Screen Wise Cambridge’s Snow Day Challenge: February 2, 2015

Make something using these items only: 5-7 cylindrical household objects like cardboard tubes or water bottles 5-7 rubber bands (hair bands are ok), and 5-7 crayons or pencils. Your creation can be a building, a human or animal figure, an abstract sculpture, a machine, a tool, a poem or story, in fact anything at all! Use the above items only.Continue reading “Screen Wise Cambridge’s Snow Day Challenge: February 2, 2015”

Participatory Budgeting

The City of Cambridge has launched a Participatory Budgeting Project earmarking $500,000 for citizen-proposed public works. A number of the proposals that have emerged from the process are playground additions or improvements; quite a few suggest traffic-calming and pro-biking infrastructure improvements. I’ve suggested that maximum benefit to the greatest number of children would be the creation ofContinue reading “Participatory Budgeting”

Of Petals and Stems

Helianthus strumosus. Have you seen these tall flowers,  yellow at center and yellow on the petals?  They’re not the Yellow Coneflowers that feature brown centers and yellow petals. These sunflowers are abundant at Fresh Pond Reservation.  Thin-Leaved Sunflower (Helianthus strumosus) is our best working guess as to what they are. We’ll have some good headgear to loan out to plucky Cambridge citizens and kids who wantContinue reading “Of Petals and Stems”

Name that handhold!

Here’s a preview of my annual Greater Boston guessing game for kids during Screen-Free Week. Yes, you’re looking at a screen right now. But consider printing it or, if you’re on your smartphone to “scavenge” these secret places, think of all the adventures without a screen these clues will lead you to! Each of these imagesContinue reading “Name that handhold!”

August Update: Nature Programs &Etc in Cambridge

  Saturday AUGUST 10 Dave Brown Wildlife Walk 1-3 p.m. Join Tracker-naturalist David Brown, who conducted a pair of wildlife surveys in the park a decade ago,on a wildlife walk on the North trail of the Alewife Reservation.  No Cost, All Ages welcome. Getting Ready to Honk! 3–5 p.m. Join Ranger Jean Rogers and Julie CrostonContinue reading “August Update: Nature Programs &Etc in Cambridge”

Easier to “Get Kids Outside” in Spring? Think Again

My daughter seemed  interested in coming outside with me this morning to check out the neighborhood owl. It has a regular shift at the entry to its nest, but that happens to coincide with the chaos of getting to school (not) on time. “But mommy,” she said, “I need a new bike helmet.” While thisContinue reading “Easier to “Get Kids Outside” in Spring? Think Again”

Mother Nature’s Child to Play in Somerville

Somerville Climate Action, Rep. Denise Provost and The Growing Center present a free film: MOTHER NATURE’S CHILD Mother Nature’s Child explores nature’s powerful role in children’s health and development through the experience of children of all ages. The film marks a moment in time when a living generation can still recall a childhood of freeContinue reading “Mother Nature’s Child to Play in Somerville”

Fire Up Your Engines: Screen-Free Week Starts April 29th

Screen-Free Week (April 29–May 5, 2013) gets a lot of flak, not to mention wolf-crying from some parties. Is it a slippery slope towards the denial of digital citizenship if we suggest kids should spend less time on computers, tablets, and e-readers? There are many good arguments for children to be educated in technology andContinue reading “Fire Up Your Engines: Screen-Free Week Starts April 29th”

Park[ing] Day

Enormous, lumpy, bright green spheres—walnuts sporting their whole husk—are littering the byways of Fresh Pond Reservation like a shell midden in the middle of nowhere. Asters are in full flush. A vole was so busy with fall it didn’t bother to hide itself, scuttling right in front of my feet across a wood chip path.Continue reading “Park[ing] Day”