## Math in Nature

### Take a Nature Walk

You might not think going for a walk in nature could lead to math, but it’s true. Math and Nature are very close friends. If you know nature well, patterns, shapes, and numbers can help you pass on what you know about the world around us.

 Go for a walk in the forest or by the water, or in a park or your backyard. Even as you walk your kids to school you will see patterns in nature. Help your child notice numbers, shapes, and sizes. As your kids get older, longer walks are possible. Go for a walk with someone who knows nature—an elder, a fisherman, a hunter, or a park naturalist. Some leaves have 3 parts, some only 1, some have many. They all seem to be odd numbers. I wonder why? Make a collection of leaves of different shapes. When you get home, sort the leaves in many ways—by shape, by size, by colour, or in any way you see. Look at the tracks animals leave. How can counting help you figure out what animal left each track? What shapes do you see in the tracks? Draw the tracks. Listen to the sounds that birds make. What patterns do you hear? How can the patterns help you figure out what bird is calling, even if you can’t see it? Count the legs as you see the creatures: 0 legs, 2 legs, 4 legs, 6 legs, 8 legs, 100 legs, 1,000 legs. They all seem to be even numbers! I wonder why? If you live by the ocean, keep track of the tides