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Hi ParentSavvy friends!

This month I've got something new to announce: Hands-on-Habitat has been freshly re-designed just for you, starting in March 2016!

While we've loved offering unstructured exploration time for you and your child in the past, we're excited to begin offering a more structured program format. This will give you and your child even better opportunity to work together as a discovery team, and learn from your Fontenelle Forest educator along the way! The new time slot will be 9:30 am – 11:00 am, and we'll all start and end together as a group. 

We are also focusing the age range – our activities will now cater to children ages three to five and their parents, but younger siblings are more than welcome to come along. 

The last big difference will be our group size; due to the nature of our activities, we are now limiting participants to 50 total individuals so that all have a great experience.

Want an idea of what we'll actually do at Hands-on-Habitat?

First, we'll start by listening to a story or two that introduce our theme of the month. We may even sing a song! Books and songs are a great way for children to make meaningful connections to science concepts. 

Next, we'll all go outside and investigate our theme. Each parent-child team will be equipped with tools and an activity or goal to work toward while walking with the group. Our outside time will only be prevented by lightning and thunder, or severely cold wind chills, so make sure both parents and children are dressed for the weather! Bring a change of clothes if you wish.

When we come back indoors, our activity will differ slightly depending on the month. Some months, everyone will have a chance to rotate through learning stations at your own pace… other times, we''ll complete a themed craft together! Art projects and simple experiments are a great way to strengthen the brain and reinforce our discoveries from outside.

And afterward, remember that your admission to Hands-on-Habitat is good for the whole day! Feel free to stay and play indoors or out as long as you like. Snacks and lunches are always welcome.

And why all the changes?

Here at the Forest, we have many settings and surroundings to choose from, and our new format will enable you to experience them all. You'll discover indoor possibilities as well as outdoor adventures. Ultimately, we hope that getting a taste of our civilized side, as well as a glimpse of our wild side, will empower you and your child to make discoveries together anywhere you find yourselves.

I can't wait to welcome you at our next Hands-on-Habitat, on March 18 from 9:30-11:00 am!  Our theme is "Baby Plants" and we'll have a simply wonderful time together. Remember to register over at to secure spots for you and your kiddos!

Lindsay Cooley

from Fontenelle Forest

Lindsay is an environmental educator at Fontenelle Forest in Bellevue. She was born and raised in Omaha, and is happy to be back after spending the past four years interning and working at various nature centers around the country. Lindsay has a background in environmental science, and is passionate about cultivating a love of the natural world in children and adults alike. When she's not cutting out craft materials or taking kids on hikes, Lindsay loves birdi ...

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