Mystery Item!

River of Words 2017
This fun activity will help you discover the interconnectedness of ecosystems, as you use observation and imagination to think about a “mystery item” in the natural world.

Recommended Grades: 3-12

You will need:

  • A mystery item
  • A pen/pencil
  • A notebook
  • Art supplies
  1. Ask your parents permission to go out into the world. You can even work together to explore your backyard, a local park, your city block, a creek, a shared public place, etc. Find an item that is unfamiliar to you or that sparks your curiosity. You don’t have to know what it is. 
  2. Observe the mystery item. Look at it closely and touch it. You can also try to draw it.
  3. What kind of environment did the mystery item come from? What does it look like? What might it do in its ecosystem, and why? What do you want to call it? Write these observations down in your notebook.
  4. Try writing a story or poem about the mystery item!
  5. If you are doing this activity with friends, you might want to try explaining your mystery items to each other, comparing and contrasting your mystery items, and/or sharing the stories and poems you wrote!
  6. You might want to start a mystery item notebook, and practice doing this regularly. This is a fun way to start keeping your eyes open in nature!