Adventures in the forest

My boys love the forest.  We spend hours each week with friends or by ourselves.  The boys learn so much it has been fantastic.
Climbing a fallen tree

This week we had one of the boy's friends over for the morning.  We set off into the forest for a walk.  This time we took a bag of items that might inspire exploration.

Our forest explorers bag

Our explorers bag:
magnifying glasses
tape measures
pencil crayons

TJ investigating

As we started off into the forest the boys stopped to investigate everything!  They noticed the different texture of the bark (so we stopped to talk about how to identify different types of trees).  All the Trilliums are out so we looked at the different colour and where they grow best.  We also talked about how they are a protected flower and the flower for Ontario where we live.


The boys used lots of energy to climb tree stumps and run about.  They stopped to consider a map on the way and got to decide where we would go.

The boys on their 'island'

They chose our favourite 'pond' which is all dried up now.  Perfect for exploring.  I set down the bag and everyone looked around.  The boys pointed out interesting features like an island, fallen trees, rusty fence, etc.  I just mentioned in passing that they could use our supplies to make a map.  Apparently they were totally into the idea.

Map making

Each boy drew his own map and instantly came up with a new adventure.  They followed their new maps all over the spot we stopped at, adding more details all the time.  It was delightful to be part of the adventure.  These brave explorers met up with aliens, poisonous plants, booby-traps, fake treasure and more.  One was heading for a secret spy lab, another to treasure and I'm not sure where MJ was off to.

TJ's map, full of traps, side trails, land features and directions

Once it started to sprinkle a little we decided to head towards home.  This fit perfectly according to their maps!  We made some stops along the way to check our directions (according to their new maps).  Then magically found ourselves right near our own stick forts!  

Our friend's new fort
Our friend wanted to make his own fort so we got to work.  Everyone pitched in to help or work on improving their own forts.  Lots of negotiations, conflict resolution, and engineering were part of this building time.

TJ feeding our pet lion
Too soon it was time for our friend to head home.  We hung out a little longer and then made our way inside for a rest.  We can't wait to see what our next adventures bring...

What do you take along to explore???

This post is linked to:
Mom 2 Mom Monday Link-up
Pintastic Pining Party