Children observe wildlife in the gardens

Mill Creek MetroParks hosted a story time for young children at Fellows Riverside Gardens on June 7.

Marilyn Williams, a naturalist with the park, created the Children’s Nature Hour for the park. The program focused on listening and seeing the wildlife present in the garden.

The event began at the Kidston Pavilion in the gardens. The children had a small coloring activity to complete while other families arrived. Williams placed out mats for the children to sit on during the event.

Williams read “Quiet in the Garden” by Aliki, a story about a child who sits and listens to the animals in the garden. The child talked to animals and learned about what they eat.

After the story, the group went on their own walk through the gardens to see what they could see and hear. Williams led them through the park, and they stopped at certain spots to try and see wildlife. At a certain point, she gave the children binoculars to look for birds in the trees.

On the walk, the children saw birds, bumblebees and spiders. They sat and listened and could hear the rushing water of the creek, the songs of birds and the sounds of scurrying chipmunks.

The group headed back to the pavilion after the walk. Williams passed out plastic bird feeders and string for everyone to make their own feeders. They looped the string around the feeders, then they put beads on the string to make it personalized. The families took the crafts home with them to use in their yards.

A number of the previous Children’s Nature Hour events occurred at the Ford Nature Center in the past, but Williams scheduled future events throughout the park for the summer. The program runs the second Thursday of each month. Future events include a program on ponds at the Lily Pond and an event about bugs at the Stitt Pavilion.

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