Quick find

Don’t want to read all the blog posts? No bother. Decide whether you’re looking for a quick activity that’ll keep everyone occupied for half an hour or so, something that might take a morning or an afternoon, or a bigger project that might run on for several days or more, and scroll through the list of posts below. New posts will show at the top, so when you check back you’ll be easily able to find new activities.

Quick

  • Trace metals in the environment: why they matter
    Have you ever thought about trace metals and how they enter our environment? Why not read our blog today to find out!
  • Insect counts
    Contribute to the Pollinator Plan by doing a time count of pollinators on a patch of flowers by you, and submit your records to the National Biodiversity Record Centre
  • Oceans of Learning
    Info about and links to a wonderful site full of marine activities and learning resources built by the Marine Institute
  • Do one simple thing for nature today
    A printable poster with tear-off strips – each with a simple nature task
  • Ocean Acidification
    A simple experiment to show the effects of ocean acidification on shelled animals in our seas
  • 2 Minute Beach Clean
    Become an ocean hero and do a 2 minute beach clean
  • Practice Leave No Trace
    Below are seven tips to encourage the kids in your life to practice Leave No Trace.
  • Rainbow Art
    A fun way to draw in the rain!
  • Ocean Cams
    Some underwater ocean cams for you to enjoy!
  • Find your tree twin
    Go to the woods and find your Tree Twins
  • Underwater Observatories
    A downloadable on underwater observatories, including links to citizen science projects where you can get involved identify animals for scientists.
  • Wicklow Mountains National Park
    A link to the wonderful nature activities hosted on the Wicklow Mountains National Park website
  • Ocean Instrument Quiz
    Guess the Ocean Instrument! A fun picture quiz – and yes, we give you the answers, and tell you what each instrument is for
  • Ocean Eddies
    Everything you need to know about Ocean Eddies. A downloadable with links to videos and other cool stuff
  • Learn about Lakes
    Learn about lakes from a series of short videos produced by researchers
  • Waves
    How do waves form and why are they important? Read all about it from surfing to renewable energy!
  • Respect Farm Animals and Wildlife Learn the Rule of Thumb
    Learn how you can practise Leave No Trace principle of Respect Farm Animals and Wildlife.
  • How does the ocean circulate: part 3
    A follow up from previous experiments on water temperature and water saltiness, this activity explains the global ocean circulation that all our lives depend on
  • 22º Halo
    A short post on a 22 degree sun halo seen in the skies over Galway one sunny May day
  • Make a bird bath
    A really quick DIY birdbath to help all the birds through the gorgeous weather we’ve been having lately.
  • Rainy Days
    Just a couple of nice websites with puzzle and colouring things to do on a rainy day. Some animal drawing tutorials too.
  • Animal Cams
    Animal cams from around the World! Go on safari on the South Africa / Botswana border, see bears in Transylvania, or catch racoons in a South Carolina back yard. Or follow the links to the webcams in Dublin Zoo or San Diego Zoo, or watch pandas in a reserve in China
  • How does the ocean circulate: part 2
    Here’s an indoor experiment to look at how the saltiness of water causes it to move, which is part of the reason why the ocean is in constant circulation
  • Sea Eagle Web Cam
    Check out the AMAZING live webcam off the Sea Eagles in County Cork’s Glengarriff Nature Reserve. Also featuring a couple of other live nests: Ospreys in Wales and Great Grey Owls in Montana, USA.
  • Flower pressing activity
    Brief and simple instructions for how to press flowers
  • Water Cycle Board Game
    Fun but educational board game about the water cycle. An innovative take on snakes and ladders
  • Write a story
    Write a story inspired by your local woods or your favourite tree
  • Who Am I? An Animal Guessing Game
    Learn about Irish wildlife through a simple guessing game
  • How does the ocean circulate
    See how water temperature affects ocean circulation
  • Garden Birdwatching
    ID sheets for common garden birds from Birdwatch Ireland Cork
  • Nature Art
    Make pictures from leaves, flowers, stones, shells, pine cones etc.
  • Leaf Rubbing
    Leaf rubbing: a 30 min activity for all ages

Half day

  • Pimp my balcony
    A cheap space saving planter for your balcony, which is also suitable for anyone wanting to make a vertical wall of plants.
  • Ladybird Lodge
    A great activity from the Natural History Museum London guiding you through simple steps to make a cosy home for hibernating ladybirds
  • How to build a den: outdoor activity
    Den building is a fantastic activity for all ages. You can do it at any time of year, but also rmember to use fallen leaves and branches. by doing this your are practising the principles of Leave No Trace.
  • Rock Pooling
    A fun day out at the sea side rock pooling. A guide to what you need…
  • Learn about rocks
    This activity makes the rock cycle real for your child. Processes that take millions of years can be recreated at far lower temperatures in your kitchen. You and your child can also finally make use of all those broken crayons you have in the cupboard.
  • Herbology Hunt
    Herbology Hunt. Monthly spotter sheets from the Wild Flower Society. Particularly suitable for younger kids with easy to identify and common verge and hedgerow plants
  • Seashore Bingo
    Find a row in any direction to win the game. Can you find them all?
  • Head on a summer Stroll
    Summer is a wonderful time for a wander around the woods. Escape the heat and enjoy a walk under the dappled, cool shade of the tree canopy.
  • Texture Walk
    The simple act of taking a walk and exploring the textures of nature around you
  • Invertebrates!
    A seashore activity looking at the small creatures that live among the rocks and algae
  • Species A Day
    If you haven’t already discovered it, it’s time to hook up with #SpeciesADay, a fun initiative from the National Biodiversity Data Centre
  • Critically Endangered Invertebrate Challenge
    We challenge you to find the coolest invertebrates, and find out why they are endangered and what is needed to save them
  • Pond Dipping for Nature Detectives
    Going pond dipping is a bit like carrying out a scientific experiment! What will you discover, who will spot the biggest animal, will you find more frogs or fish…? Turn your pond dipping adventure into a scientific experiment by making some predictions about what you might find, use the attached worksheets from the Woodland Trust to help you.
  • Is your beach eroding?
    Is your local beach growing or eroding. Here’s how to find out!
  • Birdsong 2
    Birdsongs for Sparrows, Coal tits, Robins and Starlings. Can you tell them apart?
  • Wildlife Safari
    Today we join Albert Nolan on a Wildlife Safari
  • Fun in the Intertidal Zone- a Virtual Visit
    Follow Leave No Trace Trainer Mairead to the intertidal zone and learn all about the animals that live there.
  • Seaweed Pressing
    Learn to press seaweeds and make beautiful pictures
  • Design your dream park
    This is National Biodiversity week and we are inviting the children to design their own dream park
  • Get out camping – at home
    Let’s go camping – at home! You can do this in a tent on the lawn, under the stars, or sleeping out on the patio. You can even camp inside if the weather is too wet and wild. Build your own hut out of sheets and chairs.
  • Exploring your seashore virtually
    Take a virtual walk on the seashore with Mairead and learn all about the animals she meets on the rocks.
  • Live Deep-sea Dives
    Where to watch deep-sea ROV dives live. Links for RV Okeanos Explorer, RV Falkor and RV Nautilus. Who’s diving today?
  • Make a Hedgehog Cafe
    Instructions for making a simple hedgehog feeding station that’ll keep the cats and foxes at bay
  • Saving Species
    Find out more about threatened species and browse the amazing IUCN Red List website that lists most of the world’s species that are we know to be under threat, and provides loads of info about those species.
  • Make your own wildflower seed bombs
    Make a seed bomb and throw it onto areas of bare soil to provide a little pop of colour and biodiversity. A delightfully messy activity for all the family!
  • Moon Watch
    This activity explains how the moon affects the size of the tides, and all you need is 3 balls of different sizes (the moon, the earth and the sun!), paper, scissors, colours, and a mini-figure!
  • Birdsong
    Birdsongs for Great tits, blue tits, chaffinches, and blackbirds. Learn to tell them apart.
  • Observing the weather in Ireland
    The aim of the lesson plan is for the children to learn about weather observations.
  • Preparing for an Imaginary Trek
    An activity from Leave no Trace: Prepare and have an imaginary Trek! Enjoy the trek inside or out – the imaginary jungle is all around you. Plan ahead and prepare for all that could befall you!
  • Bug Hunt
    Dr Michel Dugon (aka RTEs bug hunter) tells how to make a pitfall trap to catch the bugs in your garden
  • Make Space for Bees!
    How to make bee houses for different kinds of bees
  • Mini Beast Hunt
    You can go on a minibeast hunt in your own garden. You’ll soon notice it’s teeming with wildlife!
  • Plastic Bottle Bird Feeder
    Make a plastic bottle bird feeder cheaply and easily and fill it with bird food from the supermarket

Project

  • Build a pond
    Build a pond. Make a tiny one by half burying an old washing up bowl, or build something more ambitious…
  • Make your own Biodiversity Trail
    Have a look at the NUI Galway Biodiversity trail, and think about how you could make one in your neighbourhood
  • Nature diary Aug-Sept
    Nature diary for Aug-Sept. Insects feature this week. What an you see?
  • Nature Diary Late August
    Nature Diary for late August. What you might see, smell and hear over the next fortnight.
  • Wildlife Art – Drawing Animals for children
    A very simple drawing activity – copying from books or other pictures
  • Nature Diary Early August
    Nature Diary for early August. What you might see, smell and hear over the next fortnight.
  • Seven Simple Strategies to get your child outside
    Kids often forget how much they enjoy being outdoors until they get there. Here’s some ideas to tempt them outside.
  • Bird Bingo
    Can you get a row, or even find the whole card? Lots to be found in gardens; more down by the river!
  • Nature Diary Late July
    Nature Diary for late July. Watch out for selfheal, dragonflies and other pollinators
  • Mammal Detective
    How to recognise the signs left behind by mammals. Can you tell who’s been in your neighbourhood?
  • Nature Diary Early July
    Nature Diary for the first fortnight in July. What you might see, smell or hear in the early part of the month
  • Create a ground beetle habitat to encourage biological pest control in your garden
    Beetle bump! Create a ground beetle habitat to encourage biological pest control in your garden
  • Square Metre Outdoor Project
    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!
  • Nature Diary – Late June
    Nature diary for the second half of June, featuring grasses, birds, moths and butterflies.
  • Nature Diary Early June
    Nature Diary! What to look for, listen for, and smell for (can I say that?) in early June.
  • Become a Seashore Explorer
    In Ireland we are surrounded by so many different types of beaches ranging from sandy to shingle shores, as well as mudflats to rocky shore lines. This makes it extremely exciting exploring all of the amazing animals, seaweeds, plants and creatures that live there.
  • 30 Days Wild
    30 Days Wild is an initiative from the Wildlife Trusts which runs all the way through June. Sign up now!
  • On the trail of the Hedgehog
    Take part in the Irish Hedgehog Survey! Find out who is visiting your garden.
  • Smell Nature
    Nature’s smells (flowers, cut grass, wild herbs) help us to feel happy, so take a deep breath, follow your nose and smell some of nature’s best scents.
  • Nature Diary May – June
    Nature Diary! What to look for in the latter half of May. Common blue butterflies, bird’s-foot-trefoil and cygnets are on the list…
  • Exploring the seashore – learn about seaweeds and other algae
    Leave No Trace Trainer Trainer Mairead takes us on a vitrtual journey as she explores the seashore and teaches some interesting facts about the seaweed and algae that you will find!
  • Corvid checklist
    Go birdwatching! Corvids, or crows, are an excellent place to start as they’re large and easy to spot. You’ve probably even got some in your garden.
  • Tree Bingo
    Play Tree Bingo! Download the board and see how quickly you can get a row. You have to see a tree on your daily walk to score it. Can you get them all?
  • Ladybirds
    Identify the ladybirds in your garden or on your daily walk and submit your records to the National Biodiversity Data Centre for the LadyBird Atlas 2025 project
  • Nature Diary mid-May
    Check out the Nature Diary for the middle of May and find out all the things to see, hear and smell over the next fortnight.
  • Make a vegetable garden Part 2
    Part 2 of Brendan Smith’s guide to growing your own food. Strawberries and Spinach in this part.
  • Plant A Sunflower
    Plant a sunflower. Tall and fast growing, sunflowers look gorgeous and can even be grown in pots. Here’s some guidance on how to go about it.
  • Reel Life Science Competition
    Join in NUI Galway’s annual science video competition Reel Life Science. Open to anyone in primary or secondary school, all you have to do is make a fun video on a science topic of your choice
  • Butterflies
    Butterfly hunt is on. With resources from Wicklow Mountains National Park, the National Biodiversity Data Centre, and Butterfly Conservation, this post has everything you need to identify the butterflies and caterpillars in your garden
  • Backyard Biodiversity
    A great initiative from the National Biodiversity Data Centre to get everyone in Ireland to record some easy to identify key species from their gardens and yards. Download their identification guide and upload your records!
  • Nature Diary Apr-May
    What to look out for April 21st to May 6th. Nature diary features spring gentians, goldfinches feeding on dandelion seeds, coconut-scented gorse and early butterflies.
  • iNaturalist
    Use the iNaturalist app to identify everything in your garden. It does plants, insects, birds, mammals, even fungi…
  • Nature Diary April
    Our Nature Diaries suggest what to look out for each fortnight as the seasons progress. Watch for the blackthorn flowering and for butterflies on the dandelions.
  • What’s in your garden?
    Identify plants using mobile apps and count your biodiversity
  • Make a vegetable garden
    A guide to planting and growing onions, lettuce and potatoes. Plant in March/April
  • Nature diary – March
    What to do outdoors in late March / Early April

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