Make Your Own Home Nature Museum at Douglass Park!

We helped children and their adults get started with their own home nature museums during Douglass Park’s Earth Day celebration on April 23rd, 2022. Children could sift natural history specimens from the sandbox, select specimens from the free Home Nature Museum Shop, and spin to win even more specimens.

For those who want to add more specimens to their collections, here are some ideas:

  • You can find lots of interesting rocks and fossils on Lake Michigan beaches.Check out the Field Museum’s Beachgoer’s Guide to Lake Michigan Fossils and Rocks: https://www.fieldmuseum.org/blog/beachgoers-guide-lake-michigan-fossils-and-rocks
  • You can visit Mr. Eric’s Nature Collector’s Garden at 1003 South Elmwood in Oak Park, Illinois. The garden is open all day, every day, and includes more rock, mineral, fossil, and shell specimens like the ones you sifted from the sandbox at Douglass Park: https://www.oakpark.com/2021/01/26/a-neighbor-who-rocks/
  • You can attend the Chicagoland Gems & Minerals Association Show at Kane County Fairground during Memorial Day Weekend (May 28 and 29, 2022). Kids can make free collections of small minerals and fossils, and there are lots of rocks, minerals, gems, and fossils to purchase in every price range: https://cgmashow.com/
  • You can join the Earth Science Club of Northern Illinois, which runs ESCONI Juniors programs every month during the school year: https://www.esconi.org/
  • You can join the Chicago Rocks and Minerals Society ( https://chicagorocks.org/ ), which runs a Geo Juniors program where you can earn badges by completing a series of projects: http://geojuniors.com/
  • And, if you have some money to spend, you can visit Dave’s Down to Earth Rock Shop in Evanston, Illinois: https://davesrockshop.com/

Here are some more links that might prove useful:

And finally, here’s Mr. Eric’s recipe for homemade bubble juice, which makes pretty big bubbles on a hot summer’s day:

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