Wednesday, July 31st, 2013: Leonora Curtin Preserve

Today we played tree tag at the Children’s Museum and then had a circle where we talked about how trees are used by people. We examined various products to show how trees are used in so many different ways.

Our adventure today was to the Leonora Curtin Nature Preserve, a 35-acre property owned by Santa Fe Botanical Gardens. It is located on the I-25 frontage road south of Santa Fe. We had a wonderful tour guide named Susan who showed us around and pointed out various flowers and trees including Lemon Verbena, Cat tails, Cottonwoods, Russian Olives, and Yerba Mansa.

We did pastel drawings of flowers and plants that we liked, we read books about trees, and we went on a beautiful hike to a pond. At the pond there were dozens (literally dozens) of frogs! Since this was so exciting for the kids, we played games like Frog Detective and What Time is it Mr. Frog? It was such a treat to be there and to see the wetlands.  Thank you to Susan and the Santa Fe Botanical Gardens for showing us around this beautiful treasure!

Tuesday, July 30th, 2013: Ski Basin

Mountain Kids went to the Ski Basin today for the theme of ‘seeing and being aware.’ We spent much of our time at the river. Throughout the day we also paid particular attention to safety, learning and practicing the acronym S.A.F.E.R. which is about how to stay safe on a hike (Stop and stay put if you get lost, Tell and Adult where you are going, go with a Friend, bring an Equipment kit, make sure you Rest).

We played different games that focused on observation and awareness. We tried to remember what our friends were wearing as a practice for observing our surroundings, and a great tool in case someone gets lost.  We focused on staying still in order to observe all the tiny creatures that we can find in nature, such as spiders and caterpillars. We also worked on paying attention to where we put our feet so we do not accidentally hurt our little friends!

We did a group activity called Build a Tree where we learned all the parts of a tree and how they work – from their hearts to their roots.

Of course, we had much stomping about in the cool stream waters. It was a very fun day of learning and playing in the mountains!

Tuesday July 16: Tsankawi

The weather was perfect today! It was not too warm and perfect for our adventure on the top of a beautiful mesa. We began the day talking about flint and steel and how to put out a fire safely. We also spoke about why we cannot use fire in New Mexico because it is too dry and too dangerous. Both groups did a lot of hiking. The Bobcats did the whole loop, stopping for lunch on the trail and time to play in the caves. The Otters went up a few of the ladders and visiting the ancient pueblo ruins. Lastly (and for you to practice at home if you want), we learned an acronym about what to do if we are lost. It is SAFER:

S: stop and stay put

A tell an adult (where you are going)

F: go with a friend (never alone)

E: bring an equipment kit

R: make sure you rest

This first slideshow is of the OTTERS:

The slideshow below is of the Bobcats. Enjoy!

Monday, July 15th: Beaver Ponds and Children’s Museum

We had a lovely day. Unexpectedly, we canceled our trip to the mountains due to rain (YAY for rain!!) and cold. The Bobcats (7-11) went to the Beaver Ponds. They went for a short hike until they saw that the lightning was getting closer and decided to head back to the museum for snack and games and stories. We learned about the water, the four directions, and how to stay safe with too much sun,  rain, or lighting. The Otters (5-7) stayed at the museum for the day. We did coloring activities, played games, read stories, and had a really nice, mellow day. It was great to have so much time for the group to get to know each other. The kids did activities with their buddies and had time to really socialize.  We built a great foundation for our big hike and adventure tomorrow. Apologies for the lack of Otter (and Bobcat!) pictures. We will make up for that tomorrow! 🙂