Sunday, September 8, 2013

Fun with Naturalists and Docents

All the kids I’ve hung out with have taken to the outdoors like they were born to it. (Weird, I know.) They look at things, as questions, and think. 

But even though they love the outdoors, they do get something more out of it by knowing stuff they hadn’t thought to ask. Enter professional and volunteer natural world educators: rangers, naturalists, and docents. (There may be more names that I don’t know, but you know what I’m talking about.)

These people know stuff about an area that we, as visitors, don’t. They often have a table, booth, or class to attract interest. They generally enjoy interacting with the public. And even if your little angels are acting more like little devils, kids are less likely to be horrible to strangers. 

Victor the Corn Snake
Getting face time with a snake. Boo loves the snakes.

Wild Ginger
A chance encounter on the trail during the Earth Day festival resulted in smelling wild ginger and tasting invasive garlic mustard.

Tree ID
A kids tree ID hike.

Discussing Snakes
Discussing rattle snakes and other natural hazards in San Diego.

I enjoy the outdoors more when I am more informed about the interesting things where I am. Turns out kids do, too. I highly recommend finding one.

Do you take advantage of naturalists and docents?

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