I wanted to find a new way to extend the nature work my 3¾-year-old granddaughter, Zoey, and I have done. We’ve enjoyed nature activities such as our nature walks and nature cutting trays, Montessori nature tray with magnification work and flower arranging, life and death nature tray, flower arranging activities, Montessori nature tray with parts of the plant work, and tactile nature letters. I decided to coordinate our new nature tray with our current owl theme, add an owl nature craft, and even add an art appreciation activity.
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Fall Nature Walk in San Diego
Two parts of our owl craft couldn’t be found on our fall nature walk in our neighborhood. There aren’t pinecones where we live, but had I found pinecones in a different part of San Diego. We also don’t have oak trees. Fortunately, I had brought a bag of acorns with me when we moved to San Diego from Colorado Springs.
Zoey loved our nature walk, as usual. She was intrigued to find bottle tree seed pods. I’m not as familiar with San Diego plants as I need to be, so I had to ask on Instagram to find out what the seed pods were! Social media is so amazing!
One of Zoey’s favorite activities is cutting flowers on nature walks, so she used her cutting skills to collect some flowers along with a few colored leaves she was able to find.
(Note: In case you’re wondering, Zoey’s outfit is from Gymboree!)
Montessori Nature Tray with Owl-Themed Craft and Art Appreciation
- Multicraft Tray
- Small Glass Decanter from Montessori Services (used in pouring activites previously)
- nature items
- googly eyes for owl craft
- orange craft foam for owl craft
- hot glue gun (although there are probably craft glues that would work, too)
- Great Horned Owls by John James Audubon printed on 5×7 photo paper (Note: You can find other John James Audubon prints here.)
- The Boy Who Loved Birds: A Story of John James Audubon by Jacqueline Davies
Making a Pinecone Owl
I don’t have photos of the process of making our pinecone owls. This is something Zoey and I did together. She showed me where to place the items, and I used the hot glue gun to glue them on. Generally, our art activities are process art. But I like to do a craft every now and then to work on certain skills, follow a process, and inspire the idea that new objects can be made with other objects, especially from nature. Pinecone owls aren’t a new or original idea. I used these pinecone owl directions. Zoey loved the activity and was excited to take her pinecone owl home! One pinecone owl stayed on our nature tray.
John James Audubon Art Appreciation
I love teaching art appreciation, so it was especially fun to add one of John James Audubon’s owl illustrations to our tray along with a children’s book about his life.
Both Zoey and I absolutely love this nature tray! It’s so much fun that it’s fall themed, fits our current owl unit, and even has a craft and art appreciation activity! (Note: John James Audubon prints for a variety of birds are free to download here.)
Montessori-Inspired Owl Printables and Activities
You’ll find all my owl posts with free owl printables and Montessori-inspired owl activities in my Montessori-inspired owl unit.
Nature Trays and Nature Tables – Resources
If you’d like to know more about preparing nature trays and nature tables, I have a roundup post with lots of ideas. You’ll also find our other nature trays in this post!
I’d love to hear about your nature activities! 🙂
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