Hello Friends- Below we hope you will enjoy several Educational Resources & Nature Based Activities to do with your students, children, partner, friend, yourself… Scroll to the bottom as we will continue to add new items.
**Spring and summer are coming and so are the ticks! Please read BHHT’s Tick Protocol here.
For Everyone- Kids of All Ages!
NEW! Carter Nature Preserve: Maine Geological Survey
Learn more about the geology of this beautiful BHHT trail. Thank you, Susan Guildford, for getting this project started and thank you, Robert G. Marvinney, for compiling the report!
Join In On #BillionsofFish Fun
Alewives are running in Maine, and that’s something worth celebrating. Click here to learn how YOU can be involved!!
On June 1, we’ll pick three random winners to receive a care package of goodies from Maine Coast Heritage Trust, the Downeast Salmon Federation, Maine Center for Coastal Fisheries, and Blue Hill Heritage Trust, the groups teaming up (with others) to restore the alewife run in the Bagaduce Watershed.
Open Air Arts Initiative: Furth Wildlife Sanctuary Creative Prompts on Google Maps
Example: Chipmunk midden! Regular feasting occurs around this mossy stump. Do you see the network of holes tucked between the roots along this section of the trail? What do you think this family of chipmunks chatter about during their shared meals?
This interactive map focuses on the way non-human species MOVE through the landscape. At the various stops, we explore ways to recognize then translate movement through creative acts. Bring along art supplies for visual art interpretation. Feel free to dance along the trail as you explore and SING OUT to mimic bird song along the way. Posted signs along the trail offer guidance for analog engagement. Click HERE to view map
Wild Sun Catchers Online: Plant of the month: White Pine
Landere will teach kids and families about white pine, how to identify them and a song! She will demonstrate how to make white pine tea. Claire will share nature journal prompts and show how to make natural paintbrushes. We are joined by Hannah and Colby from Way of the Earth School (https://wayoftheearth.com) and they will demonstrate how to make a pine bark basket!
The song shared is “The Pine Tree Song” by River Jones from a book called “The Children’s Forest” by Dawn Casey, Anna Richardson, and Helen d’Ascoli. Landere shares from “Braiding Sweetgrass” by Robin Wall Kimmerer.
Wild Sun Catchers Online: Plant of the month: Dandelions
Welcome to Wild Sun Catchers Online! Join Landere Naisbitt from Blue Hill Heritage Trust and Claire Malina from the Blue Hill Library for an online workshop on dandelions. Landere will teach kids and families about dandelions, how to identify and where to find them. She will share some recipes you can try at home and demonstrate how to make dandelion tea. Claire will share information about dandelions from the book “Ubiquitous : Poetry & Science About Nature’s Survivors” by Joyce Sidman and illustrated by Beckie Prange. She will demonstrate how to make a nature journal and some fun ways to decorate it.
Wild Sun Catchers is a monthly program for kids and families that celebrates the wild plants of the Blue Hill Peninsula, with focus on a different plant each month. It is a collaboration between Blue Hill Heritage Trust and the Blue Hill Library.
Wild Sun Catchers Online: Plant of the month: Wild Violets
Join Landere Naisbitt from Blue Hill Heritage Trust and Claire Malina from the Blue Hill Library for an online workshop on wild violets. Landere will teach kids and families about the natural history and folklore of wild violets, and where to find and identify them. She will also demonstrate how to make candied violets. Claire will share information about plant illustrating and a Maine botanist. Don’t miss the special puppet performance by Merrie Eley of “The Violet” by Suzanne Down. Wild Sun Catchers is a monthly program for kids and families that celebrates the wild plants of the Blue Hill Peninsula, with focus on a different plant each month.
Explore Outdoors! Nature Based Activities and Online Learning
Go to website HERE
Enjoy these outdoor activity ideas that will keep you connected to the outdoors, even during the in-doors moments! Our newest activity will appear at the top. Click on the boxes below to choose a subject you find interesting!
Choose a Sit Spot to Visit Everyday in Your Own Backyard:
A sit spot (or secret spot) is simply a favorite place in nature that you visit regularly to cultivate awareness as you expand your senses and study patterns of local plants, birds, trees, animals, etc. (naturementor.com)
Coyotes Guide to Connecting with Nature says: “find one place in your natural world that you visit all the time and get to know as your best friend. Let this be a place that you learn to sit still – alone, often, and quietly – before you playfully explore beyond. This will become your place of intimate connection with nature”
Spring Scavenger Hunts for Your BackYard or For Out on the Trails!
Stories and Curricular Connections:
(find at there end of the live stream)
(to see a blog post about storytelling click HERE)
Each March, when the snow in the small, grassy openings in the woods has thawed, we can hear two strange sounds around dusk. They are the sounds of the male woodcock trying to prove to the female that he’d be a good choice as the father of her chicks. He struts around on the ground making a funny meep, meep sound then rockets into the air, flying in big circles while his wing feathers make a high pitched chip, chip, chip sound. He comes back to the ground and begins strutting and meeping again. It is wondrous to watch and to hear as a sign that spring if coming and our woods are about to burst with life again after a quiet winter.
Online Story Telling from our friends at local libraries!
On the Trail Activities:
Hundred Acre Woods Story Trail: The Secret Pool by Kimberly Ridley and Rebekah Raye
This project is a collaboration between Blue Hill Heritage Trust and the Blue Hill Public Library. The Story Trail can be found at Hundred Acre Woods in Brooklin. There is a gorgeous noisy vernal pool to the left at the first fork, and this is where the story begins! Follow the trail over lichen covered bedrock and red pine forests to discover a spring miracle happening once more.
We invite you to look and listen to the amphibians in the vernal pools on BHHT property. Please no handling to keep animals safe. They have fragile porous skin that can easily be damaged!
Spring Poetry Trail At Peter’s Brook
Famous authors like Edna St. Vincent Millay, Emily Dickinson, and Mary Oliver, remind us through their poems that warm weather is coming, winter is receding fast, and
"...each day sees the restoration of another animal, a sparrow, just now a sleepy wasp; and, at twilight, the skunk pokes out of the den, anxious for mates and meals..." (Jane Kenyon).
Thank you, Hannah Cyrus, from Blue Hill Public Library for sharing some of your favorite spring poems with us for this trail.
Story Hour Trail at Patten Stream
Walk the south loop along the stream at the Patten Stream Preserve and read a wonderful story about alwives swimming home. In the next couple of weeks keep an eye out for the alewives themselves! Stop by one of the waterfalls and look closely.
Phenology Trail and Citizen Science Opportunity
Hundred Acre Woods is a part of the Downeast Phenology Trail, a research project with the Schoodic Institute. Participate in this fun Citizen Science project through the Nature’s Notebook App, which can be downloaded onto your smart phone or device. Click here for instructions: Nature’s Notebook Instructions.
A fun way to connect with the Land and with the changing seasons is to observe phenology: the study of seasonal plant and animal life cycles.
Buds, at this time of year offer a great starting point to watch a plant’s rhythms unfold. There are so many complex and beautiful differences among plant species. Long and sticky, stout and furry, scarlet red, small and bumpy. Go for a scavenger hunt for buds this season and along the way learn how to identify plants without their leaves or flowers, connect with plant life cycles, and revel in the mystery of every delicate beginning of life.
- Nanny Berry Viburnum lentago
- Balsam Poplar Populus balsamifera
- American Beech Fagus grandifolia
- Lilac Syringa vulgar
- Northern Bayberry Myrica pensylvanica
Fantastical Fungi: The Magic Beneath Us
WATCH HERE (costs $4.99 to rent)
When so many are struggling for connection, inspiration and hope, Fantastic Fungi brings us together as interconnected creators of our world. Directed by Louie Schwartzberg.
Outdoor Essays from BHHT Staff
Forestry Highlights Spring 2020 by Sandy Walczyk, BHHT Forester
A Collection of Essays by Hans Carlson, BHHT Executive Director
For the Adults!
Written Seminar on the Schoodic to Schoodic (S2S) ecological corridor, taught by Ben Emory- Four written pieces on the Schoodic to Schoodic (S2S) ecological corridor, will be distributed weekly through April. These substitute for the Acadia Senior College course I was to teach this month at the Wendell Gilley Museum in Southwest Harbor and, hopefully, will be interesting, enrich, and distract during a difficult spring. Although now circulated to a wider audience, these, nonetheless, are tailored to the Acadia Senior College community — older people living in Hancock County, Maine, with varied backgrounds, interests, and levels of knowledge about conservation topics.
The final two pages of document #1 present a short article already distributed to registrants for the original course and to some others. Now that this will circulate more widely, some readers will not have seen the article I wrote three years ago for Northern Woodlands magazine (a favorite of mine!). If you have not already read my piece on Schoodic to Schoodic in Northern Woodlands, you may find turning to it first a helpful introduction.
Comments, questions, and corrections of any errors are welcome. For those who don’t know me, my bio is on page 10. I am honored by your interest in these written pieces, and I salute Acadia Senior College for all it does to enrich lives in our part of Maine.
Ben Emory (To ask Ben questions about these “classes” you can email him here: email@example.com.)
“Transforming Crisis”- A self-directed course from Dianna Emory based upon current writing and her earlier book, “Bonding with Nature.”
Thru Hike Webinar with Carey Kish, writer for the Portland Press Herald