This week we have been settling back into our home ed rhythm by beginning our Exploring Nature with Children topic for the first week of September – Seeds – and after introducing the topic yesterday by reading the great book A Seed is Sleepy by Dianna Hurts Aston we went on our nature walk today to look for seeds and fruits.

In the first place we visited, we struggled to find any blackberries (what the children really wanted to find so we could make a blackberry and apple crumble), but a friendly dog walker gave us a great tip to find loads a few minutes drive away. On our way back we found lots of other seeds, like acorns, sycamore helicopters and this great sticky seed pod, which I will identify soon, so we could do our nature journal sketching tomorrow.

When we went to the recommended place, there were loads of small, and probably sour, blackberries but the children loved picking them!

There were many blackberries that had gone over and were dried up, and then all these small ones, and only a few big juicy ones within reach… but if I had been taller we could have got some really great ones… unfortunately I am not blessed with height, so we stuck with the lower ones!

As we picked the blackberries, we talked about how the seeds in them might be dispersed. We’d already talked about how the sticky burr would stick to maybe a badger’s fur and transported that way, and how a sycamore seed would be blown away in the wind. 

We talked about what animals might eat the berries, and they eventually agreed that birds would eat them (after a lengthy discussion as to why the spiders they found spinning webs on the brambles probably would prefer insects to blackberries!). I had told Addie yesterday that some seeds are dispersed when an animal eats and then poos them out and she thought that was yucky, and so when she realised that is what happens when birds eat blackberries, she was a bit grossed out!

We could have explored and picked more berries, but we decided we had plenty for our crumble and decided to leave the others to ripen and grow and bless different fruit pickers. 

As Bear was putting the lid on his Lock n Lock container, he dropped nearly all of his berries on the ground, so Addie helped him to pick them up. We all went home happy and excited to make our first crumble of the year (although the children didn’t like it too much!)