Fun Friday: Explore Nature With Favorite Toys

Fun Friday activities are quick-and-simple ways to explore nature in your own backyard.

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THE IDEA: Play with favorite toys in an entirely new setting: the backyard, front yard or other nearby nature setting.

To say the big explorer is obsessed with Legos is an understatement. His favorites are the cars and trucks that make up the Lego City collection.

It’s not uncommon for him to spend hours playing with his vehicles in all sorts of made-up adventures inside the house.

Why not take the fun outside? Maybe even let the toys explore nature a bit?

Since the big explorer’s favorite Lego toys all happen to be trucks, he naturally wanted them to enjoy the dirt pile in our backyard.

One by one, each of the trucks was paraded out to ride over the dirt, pick up dirt, dump some out, load up rocks and more.

He built walls in the dirt for the vehicles to maneuver around, and buried others.

The fire trucks (his favorites by far) were even called upon to put out an imaginary fire that had started on the dirt hill. According to the big explorer, they had to work together ‘cause it was a seriously big fire.

By the time he was done playing, he had dreamed up all new ways to play with dirt, flower petals, sticks, rocks, leaves – even worms.

The imagination of a 5-½ year old is a terrible thing to waste.

This budget-friendly, easily adaptable activity is perfect for school days when your child wants time to play and you want him or her to spend some time outside. For best results:

  • Don’t stress about the mess. Let go of concerns that favorite toys will be permanently ruined and watch your child’s imagination take flight. Would it surprise you to know that the big explorer lovingly cleaned up all of his Legos before bringing them back inside?
  • Make a nature connection. A favorite doll or stuffed animal might enjoy a tea party with fairies while cars and trucks can blaze new trails through dirt, sand and mud.


Fall is in the air – even here in Southern California! Now is the perfect time to enjoy walks to school, bird watching or running through a pile of leaves with the kids. Here are a few more ideas for outdoor fun from around the web:

We’ll be spending some time in the big explorer’s school garden this weekend. What kind of nature fun do you have on the agenda?

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  1. says

    I love this! We have a huge pile of sand in our driveway right now (my husband&#39;s a landscaper who plows during the winter, so it&#39;s intended for sanding once the snow comes) and Shane&#39;s been having a blast playing in it with his dump trucks and other construction vehicles!<br /><br />Thank you for your kind words on one of my recent posts. It&#39;s been a difficult week, but I&#39;ve