Explore the ground with a magnifier

Show kids the biodiversity of the earth beneath their feet, where growing plants and scurrying animals work together to thrive. Help them make a magnifier to explore this important microhabitat.

What you’ll need:
• Permanent marker
• Sturdy cardboard
• Scissors or craft knife
• Convex lens (e.g., from an old pair of reading glasses)
• Hot glue
• Markers, crayons, stickers, and other crafty materials

First, get kids used to the magnifier by looking through it with one eye, then the other, then both. (They should be looking through the outward curve of the lens.) Try holding the magnifier at various distances from their eyes to figure out what works best. Then encourage kids to get down on the ground to discover details they might miss by just walking around.

Use these observational prompts and activities to help children learn about biodiversity:

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