Want to spark your child’s curiosity in the natural world? These engaging sessions are such a blast, kids won’t even realize they’re learning!
River Trail Nature Center
9:30 a.m.-noon May 2
Recommended ages: 7-12
Cost: Free, registration required
3120 Milwaukee Ave., Northbrook
Point-and-shoot cameras will be offered for attendees to learn basic techniques like how to focus, compose and record interactions with nature. “By capturing what’s meaningful to kids, we can help them reconnect to nature,” says Jerry Attere, the naturalist leading this new program for novice photographers. Snap breathtaking images of resident animal ambassadors, like this one of a stunning red fox.
Gumballs& Superballs Weekend Family Class
Chicago Botanic Garden
9:30-11 a.m. or 1-2:30 p.m. March 21 or April 12
Recommended ages: 4-10, accompanied by adult
Cost: $23 per child, registration required
1000 Lake Cook Road, Glencoe
All the fun and none of the clean up! Making gumballs and superballs can be sticky and messy, and oh so awesome! Learn and create together in these one-and-a-half hour hands-on workshops. Discover how parts of the rainforest can be used to make rubber and chewing gum, then whip up your own bouncy ball and flavored gum to take home.
Treasures from Trash
1-4 p.m. weekdays in April
Recommended ages: 2-10
Cost: Free with admission
4100 Illinois Route 53, Lisle
Instill the joy of reusing by creating new masterpieces from egg cartons, bottle caps and scrap materials. Drop in and enjoy the hands-on discovery. “Our programs are designed for parents to become their child’s partner in learning,” says Lesley Kolaya, manager of Youth and Family Programs. Allow plenty of time to stretch bodies and imaginations in the award-winning Children’s Garden.
Live Animal Feedings& Critter Connections
Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum
Daily; check website for times
Recommended for all ages
Free with museum entry
2430 N. Cannon Drive, Chicago
If you’re animal lovers, be sure to drop in to the Live Animal Feedings and Critter Connections. Guests can watch a turtle devour a crayfish or pet a snake, if they dare. It’s also a beautiful sight to see new butterflies released into the Judy Istock Butterfly Haven every after