Updated: Jan 4, 2021
I love incorporating nature activities during my speech therapy sessions. I am fortunate enough that our therapy center is located in an area with lots of trees and flowers. It is also away from the main road so we can safely play and do our sessions outdoors. One nature play idea I do a lot with students is scavenger hunt. It is a very versatile activity where I can easily incorporate learning goals while having a fun outdoor experience!
I have done different versions of scavenger hunt in my sessions since I work with kids in different developmental levels.
For my younger students who cannot read yet, I did a simple list with drawings where I specify the object, colors, and quantity. All you need is a cardboard, markers, and double-sided tape!
Some of my students need a lot of movement or sensory input, so I did this giant list on the concrete floor. I asked them to hunt for the items, run back to our list, and place them in the box. This simple activity is helpful in targeting speech & language goals while also meeting my students’ sensory needs.
To target reading comprehension with one of my students, I made this written checklist that we brought with us outside. You can make the list simpler or more complex depending on your learning goals.
Aside from all the fun of doing our session outdoors, I see how my students are engaged and motivated all throughout the activity. Hands-on, play-based tasks like nature scavenger hunt makes targeting goals easier and children's learning more efficient.
What other nature play ideas do you have? Would like to hear them in the comments below!