In my not-so-humble opinion, late summer and early autumn are the perfect times to get out exploring. Summer is just too hot: who wants to walk around the city looking for birds while sweating the whole time?
If you like to explore nature in the city with your kids, Jane Kirkland's Take A City Nature Walk will inspire you with some new ideas. Or if you think nature is everywhere but the city, this book will open your eyes to the possibility that you might be mistaken.
Take A City Nature Walk is organized in three sections. the first, "Get Ready!" introduces the concept of the ecosystem and helps would-be nature walkers plan an outing with tips on staying safe and suggesting plants and animals to look out for. In "Get Set!"Kirkland gives more in depth information on familiar sightings: pigeons, falcons, and trees. In "Go!" the author explains how to take field notes and takes us on a tour of the various places to search out nature: parks, waterways, and man-made structures. She also includes photo-identification of common plants, animals and other natural phenomenon.
This book would benefit from a table of contents and an index and it is somewhat limited by the fact that it speaks of cities in general, whereas the natural world of cities in different geographical locations can be quite varied. Still, it has some good ideas. I recommend seeking out a city specific guide, if you can. Otherwise, Jane Kirkland's Take A City Nature Walk is a good source of inspiration and activities for your next nature walk.
For nature activity inspiration, check out It's a Jungle Out There!: 52 Nature Adventures for City Kids.
If you live in NYC, you will enjoy Go Wild in New York City.
Take a look at the other Take a Walk books and website.
Big Kid says: Mom, we have to make a page like this for field notes.