Chipper Adventures: Miwok Trail Nature Exploration

Celebrate Take it Outside Week with Chipper! THIS WEEK, October 14-20, and every third week of every October marks a time to celebrate the natural world and encourage educators, families and caregivers to make time outdoors an important part of young children’s daily lives. Let’s Go Chipper with Head Start Body Start and get into the great outdoors this week!

Miwok trail with kids

Ms. pollack enlightening us about Laurel Trees

Last week we had a Chipper Adventure with Ms. Janet Pollack from the Neil Cummins Elementary School in Corte Madera, CA. Ms. Pollack teaches 3rd Grade and was the science specialist at her school for 12 years. This is her third year using JASON, a non-profit organization that connects students to real science and exploration to inspire and motivate them to study and pursue careers in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) fields. She often incorporates nature in the classroom and taught her current 3rd grade class all about the Miwoks, Native Americans who once lived along the coast that is now Marin, last week.

Using reeds for boats and making rope

Ms. Pollack teaching the kids about the uses of reeds!

The kids had a ton of fun learning about the local flora and fauna while walking along the Miwok Trail.  Chipper made sure to teach everyone this phrase before they headed outside: Tail on the Trail and Leave No Trace! The class explored all their senses as they familiarized themselves with the Laurel trees and how Bay nuts smell and taste just like pepper! While studying the Miwok’s environment, the children searched for acorns and learned to track and hunt deer just like the first indigenous peoples did. During hands-on workshop, everyone sang some Miwok Songs and learned one can make rope–or small boats–using reeds! They also created hand made pump drills, designed the same way it’s been used for hundreds of years, and practiced how to use them.

finding acorns


Taking the classroom outside makes learning so much fun! Nature is so important to a child’s mental, physical and spiritual development and “pushing our kids out the door may be the best way to save the planet.”- David Suzuki

Watch our video of the days events and get inspired:


Let’s Go Chipper and take the class outside!