Activity Introduction

girl umbrella photoframeQuick summary: Children will visit a local park or environment and will explore a range of natural resources, such as sticks, pebbles, leaves, seed pods, rocks, bark, flowers. They will sort these materials into groups in different ways, and then use them to create patterns, drawings and sculptures.

This activity is designed to help connect children to the wonders of the natural world through sensory and play-based learning.

EYLF Learning Outcome


Outcome 1: Children are connected with and contribute to their world

2. Children develop their emerging autonomy, interdependence, resilience and sense of agency

Outcome 2: Children are connected with and contribute to their world

3. Children become socially responsible and show respect for the environment

Outcome 4: Children are involved and confident learners

1. Children develop dispositions for learning such as curiosity, cooperation, confidence, creativity, commitment, enthusiasm, persistence, imagination and reflexivity

2. Children develop a range of skills and processes such as problem solving, enquiry, experimentation, hypothesising, researching and investigating

3. Children resource their own learning through connecting with people , place, technologies, and natural and processed materials

Outcome 5: Children are effective communicators

1. Children interact verbally and non verbally with others for a range of purposes

3. Children express ideas and make meaning using a range of media

5. Children use information and communication technologies to access information, investigate ideas and represent their thinking


Please note: This activity is designed to take place in a local park, bushland area or wild space (beach, forest, creek, or bush).

Resources Required:

  • a digital camera (a smartphone will work just fine as long as you can download the photos). 
  • a collection of natural materials (you can find and collect these with the children once you arrive at your destination).

Supporting resources:

Cool Australia Presents… Biodiversity from Cool Australia on Vimeo.

Other resources:

Cool Australia would like to acknowledge the support of the Seedlings Early Years Education for Sustainability (EYEfS) program.


Teacher Worksheet

child playing in sand photoframeBackground information

Content information for educators (also suitable for parents): This activity is designed to get children out and about, exploring their local environment, a local park, nearby nature or a wild space. Younger children will experience the outdoors through all their senses. Older children will explore their local environment to gain a deeper understanding of their place and their connections to it. Children will develop fine and gross motor skills; social and emotional skills; risk assessment and critical thinking skills; and language and communication skills; readily when active in nature. They can also learn respect and care for all living things and nature play can assist children to understand the world around them.

VIDEO: Nature Play WA Inc is an incorporated not-for-profit association established to increase the time Western Australian children spend in unstructured play outdoors and in nature. (

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