Monthly Fun Fact!

Did you know that arthropods are the most numerous and diverse animal groups which includes insects, spiders, crustaceans, and their kin?! 

More than 80% of all animal life on Earth is some type of arthropod. Arthropods vary in shape, size, and function. Due to their typical small size, and often ability to fly, they are able to inhabit even the most harsh environments. Sibley Nature Center encourages you and your family to take a step out into the garden, or along the Sibley trails, and see what types of arthropods you can spot! 

Craft of the Month

Tin Can Christmas Tree!

Here at Sibley we try to do "upcycle" crafts as much as possible. They help reduce the materials needed, and also teach an important lesson in the 3 R's: reduce, reuse, recycle!

This month's activity is "Tin Can Christmas Tree". This is a fun craft that kids can work on alone or together!

Materials: 

  • 3 empty, clean tin cans, small, medium, and large. Think tomato paste, tomato sauce, and 20 oz diced tomatoes
  • Primer Spray Paint
  • Green Spray Paint 
  • Adhesive backed Magnet Sheets
  • Scissors
  • Pom poms
  • Yarn cut into 18” pieces
  • Glittery Pipe Cleaners
  • Hot Glue
  • Toothpicks
  • Hammer and small nail

Directions:

  • Step One Spray paint your cans. Start with one coat of primer and then paint with one to two coats of green paint. I used Rust-Oleum Satin Leafy Green for a softer green touch.
  • Step Two Make a small hole in the top of the smallest can for you to insert the star. I did this last, but better to do it before gluing the cans together.
  • Step Three Hot glue your cans together into a tree shape
  • Step Four Cut your magnetic sheets into pieces. Small roughly ¼” square pieces will work best for the mini decorations.
  • Step Five Remove the paper backing from the small magnetic pieces and stick them to pom poms and yarn. For the yarn I suggest sticking a magnet every few inches so you can wrap the trees.
  • Step Six Make a star for the top. A couple options depending on what you have on hand: bend a glittery pipe cleaner into a star shape, coat a wood star/snowflake shape with glitter and let dry. When finished glue the star onto a toothpick.
  • Step Seven Put all the decorations and the empty “trees” on a table and let your kids have a ball decorating them!

Visit HERE for more information and additional photos to help create your upcycled Tin Can Christmas Tree!


Looking for something fun to do outside? Below you'll find some helpful tips for Bird watching, a list of fun activities to do outside, and more!

Go Outside & Play

Animals

Look for animal tracks in the mud
Count the number of butterflies you see
Take a walk and try to identify the birds in your area
Go to the Duck Pond and practice your best duck call
Study the bark of a tree with a magnifying glass and see what might be living inside the tree
Go outside and sit quietly, listen for animal sounds
Flip over rocks and search for lizards
Practice Backyard Birding

Art

Make nature art with things you found in your backyard
Do Sibley Nature Center's Scavenger Hunt
Find five leaves that are different colors or shapes
Make a leaf print using rocks & paint
Plant a seed and watch it grow
Play in the dirt! Make mud pies!

Outdoors

Visit the Fiddle Sticks Farms
Learn how to use a compass
Explore a local park or the Sibley Nature Center
Take a bike ride on the Sibley Nature Center Trails
Make an outdoor resort for all your toys
Play I SPY using only clues that describe nature