Nature activities for children

Looking for some activities to keep the kids busy? Browse our guide to nature activities for children for inspiration.

Girl playing with fairy toys garden. © Getty

Need some ideas for kids activities whilst staying at home during the coronavirus pandemic? Here are some great nature-themed projects for them to get stuck into.

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Keep this page bookmarked as we’ll keep adding more ideas.

Also check out our guide to enjoying nature and staying positive during the coronavirus pandemic.

We’ve split these ideas into the following categories:


Activities for the garden

How to make a small pond for wildlife

Ornithologist, presenter and author Dan Rouse provides a step-by-step guide to creating a small pond by adapting items such as washing-up bowls, large plant pots or old sinks.

Girl and boy crouched on lawn with the equipment for building a small pond in a container and a wheelbarrow. © DK Images
Girl and boy crouched on lawn with the equipment for building a small pond in a container and a wheelbarrow. © DK Images

How to monitor your garden wildlife

Watching your garden wildlife is not only enjoyable; recording your observations will contribute to important national data.

Tadpoles. © Pauline Lewis/Getty
Tadpoles. © Pauline Lewis/Getty

How to make an orange birdfeeder

Help the birds in your garden stay full with this fruity feeder.

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How to make a pine cone birdfeeder

Encourage hungry birds into your garden with this simple feeding station.

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How to make a bird splash 

A simple project to help your garden birds keep properly watered

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How to make a bird bath

Fresh water is essential for birds, and a bird bath is a simple way to provide it.

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How to make a pooter

A pooter enables you to observe tiny insects without touching them and is an essential tool for any young wildlife enthusiast.

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How to make a pitfall trap

Set up a pitfall trap to carry out a small-scale survey of the insects in your garden.

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How to make a reptile rockery

A simple project to provide a hiding place and basking spot for lizards.

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How to make a footprint trap

Use a footprint trap to find out which mammals visit your garden during the night.

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How to make a kite, from BBC Countryfile Magazine

There are few joys as simple and exhilarating as flying a brightly coloured kite in the breeze. For great family fun, build your own kite with this easy step-by-step guide.

Kite illustration. © Liam O’Farrell
Kite illustration. © Liam O’Farrell

How to make leaf-pressed coasters, from BBC Countryfile Magazine 

Capture the beauty of leaves in clay and display them in a pretty and practical way around your home, giving your coffee table a natural uplift.

Coasters. © Enya Todd
Coasters. © Enya Todd

How to draw feathers, from BBC Countryfile Magazine

One of the best ways to appreciate the splendour of a feather is by drawing it – follow these simple steps.

Drawing feathers. © Emma Mitchell
Drawing feathers. © Emma Mitchell

How to make a sea glass and driftwood mobile, from BBC Countryfile Magazine

Look out for driftwood and sea glass on your next beach trip to create this natural hanging decoration.

Driftwood and seaglass mobile.
Driftwood and seaglass mobile.

10 gardening projects for kids, from BBC Gardener’s World Magazine

These simple garden projects are a great way to get the kids outside, entertained and away from the TV or computer screen. Little ones will need a bit of extra help and guidance, while the more grown up can be given planning and decision-making responsibilities, and the use of tools such as hand drills and shears.

Girl playing with fairy toys garden. © Getty
Girl playing with fairy toys garden. © Getty

Get baking!

Our sister magazine, BBC Good Food, has loads of recipes for delicious food. Here are some inspired by wildlife:

Hedgehog rolls

hedgehog-bread-roll

Perky penguins

penguins

Spider biscuits

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Spooky spider cakes

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Chocolate spider cookies

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Bunny cupcakes

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White rabbit biscuits

white-rabbit-cookies

Chocolate bat biscuits

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Polar bear peppermint creams

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Discover beautiful wildlife-inspired cakes created by BBC Wildlife readers.


Learn how to identify wildlife

Our wildlife ID guides will help you identify a range of wildlife – both in the garden and further afield. Here are some garden species to look out for:

How to identify trees in winter

Use our illustrated expert guide to learn how to identify British tree species in winter. You could also try how to identify a tree by its bark, and have a go at making a bark rubbing.

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How to identify wildlife in a winter woodland

Strolling through a woodland in winter can be a revelation – welcome to a world of fungi, ferns and delicate mosses. Use our guide to identify 12 species you might see in a winter woodland.

winter woodland scene, mousehold heath, norwich, norfolk, england

How to tell the difference between a common frog and a common toad

Have you seen a frog or a toad? Pat Morris explains how you can tell them apart.

Common frog © Mike Lane / Getty
Common frog. © Mike Lane/Getty

How to identify pond wildlife

12 species for you to look for on your next pond-dipping adventure.

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Pond skater. © Felicity Rose Cole

Books about activities for children

Read our recent reviews of books for younger readers.

365 Days Wild, by Lucy McRobert

365 Days Wild

The Bumper Book of Nature, by Stephen Moss

Bumper book

RSPB: Born To Be Wild, by Hattie Garlick

Born to be wild

National Trust: Go Wild In The Woods, by Goldie Hawk (author) and Rachael Saunders (illustrator)

go wild in the woods

The Stick Book: Loads of things you can make or do with a stick, by Fiona Danks and Jo Schofield 

stick book

101 Things For Kids To Do Outside, by Dawn Isaac

101 things

More ideas for connecting with nature whilst inside

Play some games 

Read BBC Wildlife Magazine‘s reviews of wildlife games, including a bird-themed Monopoly, matching butterfly wings cards, and an augmented reality mobile app.

Playing a board game. © Sean Justice/Corbis/VCG
Playing a board game. © Sean Justice/Corbis/VCG

Watch wildlife live around the world

There is a huge variety of animal livestreams available online – pandas, puppies, kittens, donkeys, sheep and more. We have focussed on wild animals (including wildlife rehabilitation) in our comprehensive list of wildlife webcams to livestream around the world.

Lance-tailed manakins. © Cornell Lab Bird Cams
Lance-tailed manakins. © Cornell Lab Bird Cams

Watch wildlife documentaries

Find the best nature documentaries of all time to stream from the comfort of home with our ultimate TV guide.

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Sir David Attenborough pictured in the Maasai Mara in Kenya while filming David Attenborough: A Life on Our Planet. © Keith Scholey/Silverback Films
Sir David Attenborough pictured in the Maasai Mara in Kenya while filming David Attenborough: A Life on Our Planet. © Keith Scholey/Silverback Films

More online resources