Is your backgarden a jungle? We have a terrific way to explore nature in your own backgarden with the one square metre outdoor STEM project! This is a super easy to set up nature science activity that you can do in any season and just about any setting. In fact, we encourage you to explore lots of locations throughout the year!
This square-metre outdoor STEM project is a great activity for parents, teachers, or older kids to get involved with too especially if you need to supervise the use of scissors. Help your kids measure and cut the amount of string needed to create your backgarden jungle project.
Decide how you want to set it up and whether you want to simply place the string on the ground or if you want to try out some creative engineering!
Get down! Yes, you need to get down on your belly to really see what’s down there. Grab a magnifying glass and check it all out. You can push the grass aside if necessary to see what’s below the surface.
Set up your Square Metre
Before you can even begin your exploration of your area, you have to set it up! You will need to measure out one square metre worth of string. This will include using a measuring tape and some basic math skills to determine the correct length. Children may need to learn about theses measurements before you can cut the string needed.
Once you have the correct length of string, you need to set up or engineer your frame around your square metre of land. You can do this as simple as laying down the string you have cut and made sure that it is in fact positioned as a one-metre square.
OBSERVE AND RECORD DATA
Use a notebook or design your own sheets to record data, take notes, and draw pictures of everything you can see and find from leaves to moss, to grass, to dirt and water. Take notes on the bugs and insects that might be crawling around or take note of any footprints or droppings that are left behind. Are there any birds visiting? Remember to follow the Leave No Trace Principles and respect wildlife – do not get up close to the birds, observe from a distance.
Draw pictures of your area, document the weather conditions, time of day, season, or anything else that can help you learn more about your one square metre!
A backgarden jungle or one square metre outdoor STEM project is something you can set up on a nature hike, on a camping trip, at the beach, or in a jungle! Make a point to explore different outdoor locations.
Of course, it’s also fun to explore your own backgarden and learn more about what is living on the piece of land with you. You can try this for each season and note any differences or similarities you find. You can set it up in the same spot each time for a great experiment.
Or you can pick different spots around the garden to see if there is anything different to find. Maybe you see a footprint in the mud and you want to set up your nature science activity to include it!