Peta’s fun things to do at home

Hello! I have used my book, Jacob Starke Loves the Dark, as the starting-point for lots of different nature-related art and writing activities – particularly the bit when The Dark declares:

‘… Don’t you see,
All living things depend on me.’

Here is a version of an activity I’ve developed for schools:

16: How many ways can you describe a leaf*?

* or any other natural (or other) object!

This is all about thoroughly investigating a natural object and describing it in as many ways as possible. Get yourself a large piece of paper and…

  1. Write down some words that describe the leaf. Tip: think about all five senses – sight, sound, touch, smell and taste (but only if it’s edible!)
  2. See how many ways you can describe the leaf ‘visually’. You could:
  • Draw it and/or paint it
  • Print with it – using paint or ink
  • Take an impression of it with silver foil or play dough
  • Do a ‘rubbing’ of it using a crayon or chalk
  • Do a collage of it
  • Photograph it
  • Crush the leaf into the paper to leave an impression!

These are just a few ideas – I’m sure you can think of more! I’d love to see anything you do – you can email a photo to, post it on my Peta Rainford’s Facebook page @dogpigeon, or Tweet me @PetaRainford

Here’s my effort, but I’m sure you can do better!

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