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Sunday, March 18, 2012

Bike Safari

Spring is around the corner and the weather has been warming up (at least here in the southern California desert). Family bike rides are a great way to spend time outdoors together. Now is the time to plan a bike safari with your child(ren) as an afternoon activity.

Here’s how:
  • Before you go, you must plan your route. Make sure all members of your family can finish the route comfortably.
  • Do a practice run, writing down clues for things to find along the route.
  • Print out the clue list for each family member to take with them during the ride.
  • During the ride, help the little ones by telling them one clue at a time so they can concentrate on riding safely while searching for their clue (not carrying a list).
Clues can be ambiguous to encourage individual interpretations and might include things like, “something that can spray water” (interpretations might include a hose, fire hydrant, sprinklers, etc.), or something specific, “a blue gate.”

Include things that guide thinking beyond just the human presence in the neighborhood like, “material for a bird’s nest,” “food for a bee,” “purple blossoms,” or “something just beginning to grow.”

Take pictures of your finds or simply point them out to each other as you go. Below is a list of ideas for clues.

Clue ideas:

  • A plant you can eat
  • A found face
  • A pollinator
  • Dripping water
  • Something sparkly
  • Something you can hear but can’t see
  • A bird’s nest
  • Food for a hummingbird
  • A (color) door
  • A flag
  • The silliest mailbox
  • A fragrant flower
  • Something you can see through
  • A rainbow bouquet (a red flower, orange flower, yellow flower, green, blue, (indigo), purple flowers—found throughout the ride)
  • The smallest tree
Enjoy your adventure!