ACTIVITIES

  • Merlin App – Take a walk outside and see many different bird species you are able to identify with this avian ID app.
  • Fizzy Pots – Not just for St. Patrick’s Day, this easy baking soda and vinegar experiment is sure to keep the kids entertained.
  • Crystal Snowflakes – Learn a fun lesson about the formation of crystals while making your own snowflake.  The end product is sure to dazzle and you’ll have a sweet keepsake to remember your time spent together.
  • How Do Leaves Breathe? – Now that Spring has officially sprung and there is plenty of greenery available, step outside and learn a lesson about plant respiration and photosynthesis.  Waiting for the results will have the little ones entertained for hours. 
  • iNaturalist App – ID all things natural in your own yard using this comprehensive app.  The Woodland Slamander pictured above was found in Rome, GA and identified using the iNaturalist app.  Simple take a picture, plug in the location of where you found it, and share it with scientists and enthusiast all over the globe.  A web-based version is also available. 
  • Spring Mosaic – Use only what is growing in your own yard to create a spring mosaic.  You can take the lesson a step further by using the iNaturalist app to identify the different plants you used.
  • Measure the Age of a Tree – Learn how to estimate the age of a tree by measuring it’s circumference.  Take the lesson one step further by doing the math to find out what year the tree sprouted and research historical highlights from that year.  This is a fun and easy activity that gets the kids outside and incorporates math, nature, and history.  If you want to make the lesson more challenging for older kids, you can incorporate pi into your equation for more accuracy.  
  • Mud Pies! –  With the chance of rain happening later this week, take this opportunity to throw it back to your childhood with a good old fashioned mud pie! Pack your mud into any dish you can find laying around and adorn your pie with foliage!
  • Wormery – Build your own little ecosystem in a jar then add worms!  Leave your wormery in a shaded place and check back in to see how the worms have changed your ecosystem over time.  Then you can explore how worms are beneficial to soil and in turn beneficial to plant growth.
  • Nature Prints – Do you wish you could look at a flower forever?  This easy and fun activity comes close to making that a possibility.  You’ll just need a few materials and this one will definitely require some adult supervision but the creative opportunities are endless.
  • Sea Urchin Sponges –  Used as either a water-soaked refresher for outdoor fun or as a way to spice up chore time, these “sea urchin sponges” are sure to be a hit.  Make it educational with a short lesson on the salt water organism! Fun fact: Many sea urchins live to be 30 years old!
  • Build A Boat That Floats– There are many ways to build a boat and many mediums with which to build one with.  No matter your method, this can be a great lesson on the science of bouyancy.
  • Shell Memory – Incorporate math and memory with this fun numbers and pattern recognition game.  You know all of those shells that your kids insisted you bring home from your last beach trip? Let’s put them to use!
  • Jellyfish Fun – Make a jellyfish using materials you have lying around your house while you learn all about the boneless sea creature.
  • Ice Fishing –  By using salt, ice cubes, and string, we are able to see in real time how salt lowers the freezing temperature of the ice. The cold water surrounding the ice cubes causes the ice to quickly refreeze, allowing you successfully fish for ice
  • Let’s Make Ice Cream– Making ice cream in a bag teaches the same lesson about the effect salt has on ice, but in a delicious and edible way
  • Build a Polar Bear Habitat – Learn all about the mighty polar bear and its natural habitat and then build your own polar bear den/habitat using things like cardboard, styrofoam and cotton balls!
  • How Do Arctic Animals Stay Warm? – Using Butter or Crisco, learn how blubber/fat allows mammals living in polar regions to stay warm.  You can also grab other materials lying around your house and determine which work better than others at retaining heat.
  • How Do Penguins Stay Dry? – Using crayons and a very cute printout, let your kids see first hand how the waxy covering on a Penguin’s feathers help keep them warm and dry.  Why not go ahead and learn a few more facts about penguins while you’re at it?
  • Composting –  When biodegradable materials are left in a landfill, they begin to emit greenhouse gases (methane).  An easy way to support a healthy ozone is to compost! Learn why composting is important and how to get your own compost started at home.
  • Make Art Out of Recycling– Once you’ve learned all about the three R’s (see below), dig into your home recycling and see what you can make.  What an easy practice of the 2nd R – reuse.
  • Make a Reusable Bag – Now that you’ve started your Spring cleaning and you have a nice stack of old t-shirts – let’s put them to use!  Instead of throwing them out, you can upcycle them by turning them into reusable bags.
  • Cheese Powder Pollination –  Grab those cheesy snacks for a pollination simulation.  Your child will have the opportunity to play the part of a pollinator while seeing how bees benefit from the flower and how the bee’s fuzzy abdomen carries pollen.
  • Anatomy of a Flower– Get the kids engaged in the garden this week by dissecting a flower to learn all about the different parts of a flower and the role each part plays. Pull up a video lesson to follow along with!
  • Toilet Paper Roll Bat – Make your own bat using a toilet paper roll!  Did you know that over 300 species of fruit depend on bats for pollination, including the agave plant? For more batty activites and fun facts, click here!
  • Butterfly Life Cycle – Make tonight a pasta night while learning about the different stages of the lifecycle of a butterfly!
  • Wetland Word Search –  First up, let’s learn about the different animals that you might find living in a wetland ecosystem with a word search
  • Snake Painting– Did you know that wetlands are home to a variety of snake species? A snake commonly found in the wetlands of North Carolina and Virginia is the Cotton Mouth.  Using wet noodles and some paint, you can make your own “snake” painting.
  • Build Your Own Wetland – A wetland is an environment that occurs where a body of water meets the land.  One of the many benefits of a wetland ecosystem is it’s ability to filter.  This attribute helps keep the water clean and clear! You can see for yourself by building your own model wetland.
  • Coloring Book – Sit back and relax while learning about some of the many creatures that can be found in our wetland ecosystems! Whether its virtual or paper bound, coloring books can be a great educational resource.
  • Alligator Puppet – Teach your kids some fun alligator facts straight from the mouth of their own alligator puppet!
  • Catch the Critter –  Play a matching game to learn about the different macroinvertebrates that can be found in our local streams
  • Macro Mayhem– This would be a great game to play with the neighborhood kids!  Every person is assigned the part of a different macroinvertebrate to understand their different adaptations and how each one impacts the stream differently.  
  • Make your own Kick Seine – You can collect macros with a household strainer, but if you want to get really creative and look like a professional, you can make your own kick seine!
  • Macro Sampling – It’s time to put all of this learning to good use and go catch and identify some macros for yourself!  The weather is perfect to get out on the water so go macro sampling and let us know what you catch.
  • Design a Fish– Let the kiddos get creative and design a fish that they think they might find in our local rivers.  What would it look like?  What would it act like?
  • Georgia Natives –  Learn about and be able to identify some of the many fish species that are native to Georgia.
  • Fish Prints – All you’ll need is some flip flops, paint, and a little creativiity to make your very own fish prints.  Try incorporating some designs of freshwater fish that are native to your area!
  • Salmon Lifecycle – Learn about the life cycle of a salmon while also learning color recognition, reading and writing!

FILMS

  • Frozen 2 – Available on Disney+.  Join Elsa, Ana, and Olaf as they learn about the magic of water and set out on a mission to destroy a dam that is choking the river.  After the movie, teach your kiddos some basic water lessons! Such as, what are dams used for? What problems do dams create? How does water travel (water cycle)? Can water be created or destroyed?  
  • American Bald Eagle Webcam – We often see Eagles and Osprey flying high above the Etowah River on our guided paddle trips.  Thanks to webcams, we can now get a more up close and personal view of the Bald Eagle in it’s habitat.
  • Aurora Borealis – See one of nature’s most incredible shows, the Northern Lights, for yourself!  This is a wonderful opportunity to experience a wonder that few are lucky enough to see.
  • #Savewithstories – Do you want a break from the story time? Follow “Savewithstories” on Instagram to have your kid’s favorite celebrities read them their favorite bedtime stories.  
  • Popeye the Sailor Man – Did you know that Popeye the Sailor Man himself had origins on our own Coosa River?  The characters from the popular comic were based on real people who worked on the Leota steamboat, transporting building materials for dams and towing dredges.  You can enjoy an old classic while teaching your kids or grandkids about the historical connection to the Coosa River.
  • Rivering – Go on a river adventure with some extreme kayakers.  This film includes stunning imagery, good times, and thrill-seeking fun!
  • Drain the Oceans – Available on Disney+.  Using science and technology, we can finally learn the answers to some of the greatest unsolved mysteries that have been lying at the bottom of our oceans.  Available on Disney+
  • Our Planet: High Seas – This episode explores the depths of our oceans that few people have had the chance to experience first hand.  Available on Disney+
  • Hostile Planet, Episode 6: Polar – Available on Disney+.  Explore the unique challenges that face wildlife living in the coldest regions of our planet.  
  • Live Orca Cam – Check out this live cam to see if you’re lucky enough to spot Orcas swimming off the coast of Canada!
  • Big Miracle – Available on Netflix.  This movie is based off the true story of an epic scramble to save 3 Gray Whales trapped in the thick Alaskan ice.  Watch as people from all over the world come together and put aside their differences for a common cause.
  • River Magic – Our friend Liz wrote a blog post detailing the special place that rivers have taken up in her heart.  She also talks about how difficult it has been to see our rivers blighted with trash and debris.  
  • Earth Day Live- This year marked the 50th Anniversary of Earth Day.  On April 22, 1970, 10% of the US population (at the time) took to the streets to protest environmental injustice and to demand change.  Let’s celebrate Earth Day all year long.  To learn more about the history and how you can get involved, click here.
  • The Three R’s– You’ve heard of Reduce, Reuse, Recycle?  But do you know what each one really means and what makes them different?  Do you think one is considered better than the others?  Let’s find out!
  • America’s National Parks –  Available on Disney +.  You can now take a virtual journey through some of the most wild and heavily protected areas of the United States – our National Parks.  
  • Vitamin Bee – How does pollination work?  Which crops depend on which pollinators for survival? Your questions will be answered by our pal Vitamin Bee
  • Bee’s Tea- Need a good laugh?  Check out Nicole Richie as her alter rap ego Nikki Fresh, giving us the low down on the importance of bees.
  • Bee Movie– Available on Netflix.  Barry the Bee takes on a journey to get justice for beekind after he discovers that the humans have been stealing their honey.
  • Bee House –  Learn how you can build your own bee house to keep the bees safe and their numbers up!
  • Life Cycle of a Frog – Frogs are one of the more commonly recognized wetland inhabitants.  Did you know that they also have a very unique life cycle?
  • Wetlands Rap- If you want a catchy lesson that is sure to get stuck in your child’s head (and let’s be honest, yours too), look no further than this wetlands rap.  Maybe you could even come up with your own tiktok dance (if you do, please share it).  This site also offers a lot of other fun facts and activities.
  • Fast Facts– For more information on the different types of wetland envionments and the creatures that inhabit them, click here.  For more information on swamps, click here.
  • The Rescuers – Available on Disney+.  The kids won’t believe that Evinrude began as a dragonfly nymph!
  • Sunfish – See the colorful sunfish in it’s natural habitat as it defends it’s nest.
  • How Do Fish Breathe? – Humans can’t live underwater because we need oxygen, but what about fish?  Do fish even need to breathe?
  • Do Fish Drink Water? – One of the many differences between freshwater fish and salt water fish is the way they regulate their internal water content.  

Tune in next week for Amphibian Week!!

Here at Coosa River Basin Initiative, we are continuing to work hard for the health and safety of our rivers in the upper Coosa River basin. If you have a water related issue or concern, please let us know about it. We are currently out of the office but can still be reached by email at jesse@coosa.org or aray@coosa.org, by phone at 706-232-2724, or on social media. We want to stay connected with you!