Family Resources

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With physical distancing keeping families at home, family time is more important than ever!

The BC Wildlife Federation is here to help families of member and non-members alike to navigate these times. Here you will find  resources  and activities that you can give your kids to do on their own or do together as a family.

We update this web page WEEKLY. If you are looking of our previously featured content, they can be found at bottom of the page.

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WEEKLY JOURNAL PROMPT

Ask your family to write or draw what you think


Be sure to SHARE what you come up with by sharing it on social media and tagging us #BCWF

FEATURE ANIMAL

Townsend's Chipmunk

The Townsend’s chipmunk is part of the squirrel family and is found in coniferous forests in the southwestern region of BC. They are great climbers and seek out trees or burrows to hide from their predators. The colour of their fur blends in with the environment which also helps them camouflage from predators. During cold winters, they tend to hibernate but in more milder winters, they can survive without hibernation. Next time you are on a hike, keep an eye out for these rodents!

AT HOME ACTIVITY

DIY Nature Frame

Make a picture frame for your home!

What you need:

  • A photograph
  • 4 Sticks
  • String or yarn
  • Leaves or flowers
  • scissors

How To:

  1. Create rectangle with the 4 sticks and lay them down on a surface with the photo in the middle.
  2. Wrap the string multiple times around each corner where the sticks intersect.
  3. Wrap extra string around the sides and thread in leaves or flowers to decorate the frame.
  4. Create a loop with the string by tying two corners together. You can now place your photo in your frame and hang it up around your home!

FEATURE RESOURCES

BC Wildlife Watching

HelloBC (BC)

Get your camera ready to spot popular creatures around BC that start to emerge during the spring and summer months. HelloBC’s article will give you the inside scoop on where to find the best sightings.

Tie Your Own Knots

Wilderness Inquiry (USA)

From bow lines to clove hitches, learn how to tie knots from the comfort of your home. This skill can come in handy when camping and boating and also improves hand-eye coordination.

May 27, 2020

Journal prompt: Why do you choose to be outside?

Animal of the week: Townsend’s chipmunk

The Townsend’s chipmunk is part of the squirrel family and is found in coniferous forests in the southwestern region of BC. They are great climbers and seek out trees or burrows to hide from their predators. The colour of their fur blends in with the environment which also helps them camouflage from predators. During cold winters, they tend to hibernate but in more milder winters, they can survive without hibernation. Next time you are on a hike, keep an eye out for these rodents!

At Home Activity: Forest frame

What you need:

  • A photo
  • 4 sticks
  • String or yarn
  • leaves or flowers
  • scissors

How to:

  1. Create rectangle with the 4 sticks and lay them down on a surface with the photo in the middle.
  2. Wrap the string multiple times around each corner where the sticks intersect.
  3. Wrap extra string around the sides and thread in leaves or flowers to decorate the frame.
  4. Create a loop with the string by tying two corners together. You can now place your photo in your frame and hang it up around your home!

Other resources:

BC Wildlife Watching: Get your camera ready to spot popular creatures around BC that start to emerge during the spring and summer months. HelloBC’s article will give you the inside scoop on where to find the best sightings. https://www.hellobc.com/stories/bc-wildlife-watching-what-to-see-in-spring-and-summer/

Tie your own knots: From bow lines to clove hitches, learn how to tie knots from the comfort of your home. This skill can come in handy when camping and boating and also improves hand-eye coordination.  https://sites.google.com/wildernessinquiry.org/allaboutknots/tie-your-own

May 20, 2020

Journal prompt: What parts of your natural surroundings do you find soothing?

Animal of the week: Steller’s Jay

These birds are very common around BC’s conifer and pine-oak forests. When building their nests, they use mud to glue little pieces of tiny sticks together and place them 6 to 30 feet high in trees. They are also quite bold and clever creatures and are known to be habitual nest-robbers, similar to other jay species.

At home activity: Bird feeders

What you need:

– Empty toilet paper roll

– 2 small sticks or straws

– Peanut butter

– Bird food

– String

 

How to:

  1. Make four equally spaced holes in one end of your roll.
  2. Make two smaller holes opposite from each other in the other end of the roll.
  3. Cover your roll in peanut butter and then roll it in bird seed.
  4. Thread the sticks through to make a cross and attach the string at the top. Your bird feeder is ready to be hung up outside!

Other resources:

How will Coronavirus change the environment? Carbon emissions have dropped during the COVID-19 pandemic, but the real question is will it last? Watch the video from BBC below to find out more.  https://www.bbc.com/future/article/20200422-how-has-coronavirus-helped-the-environment

Identify dangerous plants! Become familiar with spotting dangerous plants like poison ivy and giant hogweed through MEC’s website. Teach your kids how to stay safe when exploring nature.

Learn more here:

https://www.mec.ca/en/article/how-to-do-anything-spot-dangerous-plants?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=organic_social&utm_campaign=hike&utm_term=hike&utm_content=5_dangerous_plants&fbclid=IwAR0zSkmZ4-ocYQuPYRkrBNgSNuKHzYdKsvrz7R88xt5ch_IcqYX0yMz65LQ

May 14, 2020

Journal prompt: What will your yard look like in 5 years?

 

Animal of the week: Western Painted turtle

The Western Painted Turtle is BC’s only native freshwater turtle! They live in BC’s wetlands and can live for 20-30 years. There are fewer than 250 adult western painted turtles in the Pacific Coast population. Fun fact: BC’s western painted turtles grow faster and larger than others of the same species.

 

At Home Activity: Leaf Rubbings

Nature is full of colour! But have you noticed the shapes and textures? Leaf rubbings are a great way to observe and compare some of the texture in nature!

What you need:

  • Pencil or crayons
  • Paper
  • Leaves

How to:

 

  1. Go outside and collect leaves (don’t pick them)
  2. Focus on ones with different colors and textures!
  3. Place your leaves under your paper
  4. Use an unwrapped crayon or the side of a pencil and shade over top of the leaves
  5. Compare the shapes and textures!

 

Other Resources

Home Compost Bin
Recycle BC App

May 7, 2020

Journal Prompt: What is your favourite season? Why?

Animal of the week: Mule Deer

There are three subspecies of mule deer in BC! They live throughout most of the province and can sometimes be recognized by their white tail with black hair at the tip. The Rocky Mountain Mule deer migrate between summer and winter habitats, this trip can be as far as 120km!

At Home Activity: DIY Puzzle

Here is an easy way to use what we have around the house and create something fun for the whole family!

What you need:

  • Paper
  • Cardboard
  • Scissors
  • Ruler
  • Paint, pens, or drawing materials
  • Glue
  • Penny

How To:

  1. Paint or draw a picture on a piece of paper and let dry
  2. Paste a piece of cardboard to the back and cut to size
  3. Flip over, use a ruler to draw a grid on the back
  4. Use a penny to draw notches on each side of every square 
  5. Carefully cutout the pieces
  6. Put puzzle back together

 

Other Resources:

Eco Sense for Living  – PBS

List of Birds Local to the Greater Vancouver Area – Vancouver Bird Week

April 30, 2020

Journal Prompt: What does nature mean to you?

 

Featured Animal: Great Blue Heron

Great Blue Herons are up to a metre tall and can have wingspans that stretch over 1.5 metres! They live in wetlands along the coast and southern interior. Fun Fact: nesting occurs in colonies called heronries that may include up to 400 nests!

 

At Home Activity: Backyard Nature Surveys

If a scientist was studying a forest, would it take a LONG TIME to look at every tree?
Yes! So, scientists study smaller SAMPLE AREAS. You can use this method too!

What you need:

  • Shoelace
  • paper
  • something write with

How To:

  1. Tie shoelace ends together to form a circle
  2. Go out and place your shoelace anywhere in a green space
  3. COLLECT YOUR DATA! Write down or draw everything inside
  4. Move to another area and repeat

 

Featured Resources: