25 May 2021

Field Notes: Be a caring freshairhead

Graham Watson, John Muir Award Manager for Cumbria, celebrates holidays, sunshine and the chance for locals and visitors alike to head out to explore and care for nature.

Soundcard for nature - Graham Watson

Whether you’re a fan of its mountains, woods or lakes, my office - the Lake District National Park - has something for everyone. If you’re lucky enough to visit, it’s well worth taking some time to look a little more closely at things. Here are some activities to try:

1. Find something natural and create an acrostic poem about it

Find out more on ‘The Lost Words’ – poster examples of poems about Bramble, Dandelion, Kingfisher; an Explorer’s Guide; and a Literacy and Nature Resource Guide.

2. Mud stick painting

Using just mud, a stick and an A5 piece of card paint a picture of the landscape. For double the fun, sit back-to-back with someone and get one person to describe what they are looking at while the other paints. 

3. Find colours in nature

Match colour of clothing to natural objects, or find shades of one colour and arrange them in a graded spectrum. 

4. Collage the view

Collect natural materials and use them to make a collage picture of the view. 

5. Create a sound card

Sit in silence for three minutes and draw or write what you hear across a strip of card (see photo above).

I hope you enjoy these ideas! There are loads more ideas from Muddy Faces here and from the Wildlife Trusts here.

Handle with care

Even if you can’t make it to the Lake District National Park, there are plenty of things you can do to care for nature closer to home.

It starts with treading carefully, picking up a piece of litter and leaving the place better than you found it. Caring means we need to respect both residents and visitors, something the children of Grasmere School help explain in their wonderful interpretation of the Countryside Code. Grasmere School interpretation of the Countryside Code

We can also go further, leave the car behind, walk, cycle, take a bus or lake ferry and that will make the world a better place everywhere – less congestion, less air pollution, less car park fees, more active, more views, more fresh air.

For nature here, there and everywhere, follow the Countryside Code, smile, say hello - be a freshairhead and you’ll love it!

Hand and flowers - David Lintern

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