Nature Art – Sensory Play

Today’s focus was on Trees – colour, texture, shape, leaves, seeds…

We began down at the lake – bark rubbing

Elise is one of the special needs students I am fortunate to be working with this year. We learn together through nature play!

We then headed back up to the wooded area at the back of the garden, gathering fallen leaves along the way.

To our delight, we were welcomed by a golden carpet of pineneedles – a brand new organic canvas, gifted by nature.

Let’s go play…

Land Art

Using our hands, we created shapes on our earthy canvas. A circle emerged first and we decided to create a mandala.

Letting the student take the lead, its all about the process not the finished product.


The word Mandala (pronunciation mon- dah- lah) means “circle” and represents wholeness.

We go on a hunt for leaves, pine cones, seeds, rocks and anything else Elise wished to add to her Mandala.

Exploring textures, shapes and sizes as we hunt and gather.

Creating mandalas is a beautiful and soulful activity which you can do practically anywhere and at anytime of the year.

Our spirits dance, as we experience the wonder and awe of the natural world

The elements from which the art projects are made are of the land, the lakes, rivers and the sea; the trees, driftwood, fallen branches, pine cones and needles, shells, pebbles as example. When we gather material for our nature art we have close contact with our environment and this “intimate” relationship is reflected in our art.

These delightful creations are temporary so taking photos of the mandalas preserve the moment as you return the next day to discover how your mandala has transformed by the elements.

We then headed back up the hill…

…to create more shapes in the pine needle canvas and jumped from one shape to the next…

Here we are landing in the square!

The golden glow of the trees sang to our hearts. Wishing to capture their radiant beauty we made giant suncatchers. You can find out more in my next post…

Make Nature Play Every Day!

Elise is one of the special needs students I have the privilege of working with this year. You can follow our journey here: Nature Art Therapy. If you would like to learn more about our Nature Art Program please visit NATURE ART – we would love you to join us on this sacred journey.


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  1. Pingback: ENVIRONMENTAL ART IS INSEPARABLE FROM THE LAND - Educating the Heart with Nature Art

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