Turn Screen Time into Green Time

Green Time - Get your daily dose of nature

Due to the recent lifting of the shelter-at-home order and in an effort to slow the spread of Covid19 we have compiled resources to help everyone get a daily dose of nature while staying safe.   There are loads of online resources for our kids and families, but what do you do when you need to turn off the screen and get a few moments of fresh air?  Check out these great ideas to help us all get creative and get outside while still following safety guidelines. Please remember to stay at least 6 feet away from anyone not in your household.

You can also follow our Facebook and Instagram pages and share photos from your nature ideas.  We'll share them with our community and help each other.

Email us anytime at info@acparks.org with questions or additional resources and we will add them as space is available .

Green Time Resources


Get Your Nature On 

City Nature Challenge: The City Nature Challenge is an international effort for people to find and document plants and wildlife in cities across the globe. It’s a bioblitz-style competition where cities are in a contest against each other to see who can make the most observations of nature, find the most species, and engage the most people.

How to stay active outdoors during shelter-in-place: Read this informative San Francisco Chronicle, by Tom Stienstra, about keeping yourself safe while trying to stay active outside.


Nature Scavenger Hunt: Play ACCPF's Nature Scavenger Hunt for a chance to win cool prizes. Just download & print this PDF to keep track of your nature discoveries. Remember to keep a safe distance at all times.  

iNaturalist: Join over 1 million people to help the California Academy of Sciences and the National Geographic Society by adding nature observations to scientific data repositories.

Backyard Birding with the Audubon: Find activities, identification tools, bird feeding tips, and more.

Get outside and Garden: The Napa County Master Gardeners have a treasure trove of garden resources. Take this time to get into your backyard or out onto your patio and make things grow!

Wetlands Edge Trail: Get outside and enjoy the beauty that is the American Canyon wetlands.  Grab your binoculars and you will see thousands of amazing birds and maybe even river otters.  Click here for a map.

Newell Ope Space: In 1999, Jack and Bernice Newell donated the Newell Open Space property to the City of American Canyon. This preserve includes 620 acres due east of the City connected by a panhandle along Newell Creek. You have two routes to choose from, both climbing in elevation. Make sure to bring water, insect repellant, and maybe a walking stick.  Click here for a map.

City Parks:  Check out the city of American Canyon website for information about public parks and trails. 

Get Creative

Physically Distant Social Art: Check out this great video about what one community is doing to share art while staying safe.

Nature Art Ideas: The Artful Parent has created some wonderful nature art ideas.  Some you need to help with and some you can just point your kids at. Check them out and explore your backyard or local park, while staying safe.

Create Art with Nature: Check out this inspiring collection of process art activities created by The Craft Train's Kate.

Chalk Art: Leaves messages of connection and hope through chalk art.  Create an original piece of art on your front sidewalk or local trail for someone else to find.

101 Chalk Art Activities: The folks at What Mom's Love has created a great list of sidewalk chalk learning activities your kids can do in the backyard.


Rock Painting:  You can get your nature time in by walking the neighborhood (keeping 6 feet away from non-family members) to collect rocks.  Bring them home, wash your hands and the rocks, and get creative.  On your next walk, you can hide your creations to brighten another person's day.  This link is to jumpstart your imagination.

Education At Home

How to Make Bird Sheds and Houses for Bird-Watching   This page was recommended by local Boy Scout, Sean, and when you visit this great page you will learn about bird identification to how to attract birds to your yard.  You can even learn how to make a birdhouse and other ways to attract birds to your backyard.

A Home Gardening Guide for the Family  Boy Scout Sean also recommended this great page full of information about gardening in your backyard, in containers on your patio, or even in window boxes.  Your family will learn about nature and the natural world. 

Backyard Science Experiments: Check out Childhood 101's great page that has arranged the experiments into four handy science learning areas –biological sciences, chemical sciences, physical sciences, and earth & space sciences. Geared toward young learners.

Backyard Science for all ages: 13 outside science experiments to do with your kids or have your older kids do with siblings.  

Cincinnati Zoo Home Activities: Check out this page with great educational ideas.

Suddenly Homeschooling?:  Check out this great resource for folks trying to balance working from home and homeschooling their kids.

Six Educational Outdoor Activities: Hazel Stark, with BDN, has pulled together some family-friendly outdoor educational activities.

Birdseed Wreaths: Feed your local birds and bring them to your backyard, patio, balcony, or window. 

SWEP Snippets: Visit the Sierra Watershed Education Partnerships (SWEP) website and their virtual resources connecting teachers, students, and parents. A new interactive and educational lesson every day.

Handy Garden Experiment: Join the folks at Science Beyond to celebrate spring by growing five different seeds in one handy glove. Make a prediction about which seed will grow first, tape your garden to the window, and see what happens!

Leaf Study: The Home School Scientist has created an interesting leaf study program. 

Soil Study: The folks at The Educator's Spin On It created some pretty cool soil experiments to do with your kids at home. 

Plant Propagation: These educators have some great experiments and explanations about how plants grow.

Napa Valley Kid: has created an extensive list of educational opportunities, all online.

Visit & Learn Remotely

Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Gardens: Yes it's not outside, but it's still really cool. Join them for a Home Safari Facebook Live each weekday at 12:00 PM where they will highlight one of our amazing animals and include an activity you can do from home.

Visit Museums Around the World: Check out 12 amazing museums around the world. Learn about the ancient Mayans, Van Gogh, or even visit the Guggenheim all online.

Visit 5 National Parks:  Are you missing your outdoor adventures?  If so, follow this link to visit Kenai Fjords National Park in Alaska, Bryce Canyon National Park in Utah, and even Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park in Hawaii!

Visit Machu Picchu: You can visit the amazing site of Machu Picchu while still following the stay-at-home order.  

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