It doesn’t matter how old I get, the summer still brings with it a yearning to return to my old stomping grounds – the pond. As kids, some of my fondest memories are of mucking about in the pond. My brother, Petey, and I even had ‘frogging birthdays’. Rather fitting really that summer brings with it childhood memoirs of time spent at the pond, as ponds are the old stomping grounds for many critters in the spring & summer. A pond is in fact a ‘creature nursery’. I’ve got some great instructions for you on how to build your own pond scope and a temporary treasures aquarium. Often, when out on set teaching in BC, we have found ourselves schooling in an outdoor classroom on location. This is a great inspiration to give the child a break, take a nature walk and get some science based learning in!
Here are a few of my favourite childhood pond nursery pals:
And a few that spend their lives in the pond:
Pond waters teeming with life, you just have to slow down to see it. Heres two ways that I’ve done this:
Building a Pond Scope
- yohgurt / ice cream container
- saran wrap
- elastic band
- exacto knife
- Get an adult to help you cut out the bottom of the container.
- Cover new opening with saran wrap and fasten it to the container with an elastic band.
- Stick the saran wrap side of the container in pond water, hold still and and watch to see what swims by. It works just like a pair off goggles. Be patient and try not to stir up the water.
Creating a Temporary Treasures Aquarium
- pond water
- pond dipping nets
- clear glass container
- door screen
- Fill glass container with pond water.
- Use a dip net and run it over the vegetation in the pond. Empty the contents of the net into the aquarium.
- Cover the opening of the container with door screen and place in the shade.
- Let the water settle and watch the critters inside that you didn’t even realize were there.
- Many of the critters are babies and leave the water as adults, so don’t keep the critters more than a couple of days before returning them to where you found them.
Have fun and remember to be respectful of the critters and the pond. Your visiting their home.
For more science fun, check out my science camp this summer.