Industrial revolution and consumer mentality have wreaked havoc throughout the world in general and particularly for wild life. We hear every day about dolphins and sea animals dying and washing up on the beaches. We get to know about animal species becoming extinct because of human interference in their habitats. Precious animals are getting hunted, which recklessly pose a danger to the wild life. All of this is a result of our ignorance about the eco system.
Now the questions arise:
Who can fix this situation?
Who can bring change in the society?
Who can play a crucial role in the betterment of wildlife?
And the answer of all these questions is YOU!
Yes, that’s true. You have the power to fix the situation, bring change in the society and help the wildlife by raising your kids right. By teaching them to be nice to animals and to give them the love they deserve. After all, these little kids are going to be the future of the world. The great news is that; the fortune is in your hands right now!
Purpose Of Teaching Kids About Wildlife
We must garner love for wildlife in our children – our successor, so that they can claim back whatever is left of the eco system. We should educate them about animals, their needs, their habitats, how they are beneficial for us and what hurts them. We should also inculcate a strong sense in children to never interfere needlessly in animals’ lives and their habitats.
Although this is a project that will go on for decades, but initial steps must be taken to teach kids so they can differentiate between right and wrong.
How to develop kids interest in wildlife?
Since schools are mostly closed these days, parents will have to rely on online learning to educate their kids. However, the positive aspect is that; parents and kids are spending more time together. It means this is the right time to influence their thoughts and coach them about different outlook of life, including wildlife.
You must be wondering how to do it. Well, there are certain ways to train the little brains to love animals. Here are a few:
- Take your kid for a walk and talk to them about the animals you see during your stroll. Tell them how much love they deserve being homeless and hungry.
- Another way is to make them watch different shows on animals. We all know that children love to watch TV so why can’t we use it for learning purposes? Moreover, if your kiddo love reading, then get them books with wildlife theme.
- Third way is to get a pet. It is seen that people who own pets are more compassionate towards animals (in general) than those who don’t.
- Activity-based learning is another way to infuse the love of animals in your child. Wondering how? Well, for your convenience, we have gathered a few activities for teaching your kids about animals, especially wildlife, in a fun way.
Fun activities for kids
Young minds have a very small attention span, and they lose interest in reading quickly. This is why, moms with young kids are encouraged to gather information on activity-based learning for children, who are staying at home because of COVID-19 restrictions.
Following is a list of activities that you can do with your little ones and make them learn some fun facts about wildlife and nurture love for it.
Learn about various animals’ footprints
If you have young kids to teach, you will have to find appropriate topics and make them fun. This is because younger kids can not entertain complexities. Hence, you will need to keep your topics very simple and basic. Just like this activity
- Colorful sponges
- An internet connection for research
Doing research with kids surely builds their interest to another level. You can ask for their favourite animals and research online about the kind of foot marks they leave. This will nudge your kids’ imagination. Once they have learned about the foot prints, you can ask them to cut sponges in those shapes and paste them on the cardboard. Their little brains will learn a lot with this simple activity.
Note: educate your child while he or she is doing the activity about how the particular type of feet helps these animals to survive in the jungle life.
Build animal homes/natural habitats
Whenever you are thinking of starting an activity about natural habitat; you should always start with an online research. Learning a few things before starting the activity is a must. This gives the young mind confidence to start and proceed. When they feel they know, they can find the courage to go on.
The next activity on the list is about building natural homes for animals. You can start it by building a beaver’s home because it is simple and easy.
- Dried and fresh leaves
- Play dough
Your kid will have to break some larger sticks in order to lay the foundation for beaver home. Flatten the play dough and spread the sticks (some sticks will have to stay in upright position for the weather shelter), moss, leaves and a couple of small rocks on it randomly. This is the kind of home a beaver uses for rest and survival. Through this, your child will learn about rodents and their survival instinct. Breaking sticks will help the child strengthen muscles as well.
Make a food chain with paper cups
Food chain knowledge is essential for your young kid. It teaches about the importance of eco system and how every little thing in it is dependent on the other. A simple training session with paper cups and stickers of animals can give your children invaluable learning experience. This activity is a must-try!
- Paper cups
- Animal pictures downloaded from any online source
Teach the kids about co-dependence in the eco system and help them build the pyramid. This activity is suitable for pre-schoolers, but they will need your help along the way. It is a complicated procedure, so you will have to simplify it for little ones. They will learn how nothing and no one is useless in this system. Even the tiniest organism is crucial for the eco system. The kids may struggle in the beginning, but they will learn the concepts clearly with time.
Almost every household with kids owns a huge collection of lego blocks. The best part is that; these blocks can be used for animal love inculcation too. You do not need to have any extra stuff for this training session. You can simply use the lego blocks already lying at home and start!
- A set of lego blocks
Make forest animals with the help of blocks using different colors. This activity aims to nurture love for animals in general, and it teaches kids about animals’ physical appearance. Moreover, it is great for brain development too.
Bugs’ five star accommodation
If you have a wooden box lying spare at home, then you can use it for a really fun activity. All you need to do is, create a wonderful hotel for bugs and educate your kids about natural habitats with that.
- A wooden box
- Glue for sticking
- News paper
This is surely going to be a great experience for the little ones. Tell them to first collect all of the material from outside, like leaves, sticks, stones, etc. This should be a learning procedure. Then ask them to cut/arrange these things to fit the small compartments of the box. Use glue to stick the ‘found stuff’ into several compartments for different bugs. You can now hang this hotel outside for the visitors and enjoy looking at bugs visiting it.
The young minds will learn a lot and also feel satisfied by providing shelter to these small bugs.
Note: Make sure the hotel is hung away from your house entrance because you may come under the bugs’ attack, if it is close by.
Our eco system is precious, and it is essential for our survival. The existence of our animal friends on the land and in the water is also dependent on it. We often talk about endangered species to our kids for knowledge. However, what we really need to teach them is the idea of our collective dependence on the biosphere. We need our children to know that planet Earth is our home and animals are our friends and neighbours. We must act responsibly in order to cause no damage to our friends.
These above-mentioned activities may not tell them how to act responsibly, but they will definitely help them develop love for the wildlife. This kind of learning will leave long-term impact on their minds. Eventually, young minds will know how they must act to save the animals around them from becoming extinct. Check out more about observing wildlife responsibly!