Discover small moments of joy in nature

Many of us have more time to notice the rhythms of the natural world unfolding outside our window or in our back garden. So, while you're staying safe at home, we're challenging you to experience the small moments of joy nature brings us in five different ways.

Listen to the sounds of nature. Look closely at the colours and movement in the world around you. Sit as quiet as a mouse and listen to the birds chattering, look at the clouds streaming by or notice how the tree outside your window changes as night falls.

Think about how nature feels. Can you feel the warmth of the sun or the breeze on your cheeks? Discover something new about the nature on your doorstep. Use your experiences as inspiration to get creative. Make a piece of wild art, write a poem or draw a picture. Share your creations with friends and family.

We’d love to find out what you’ve noticed about the world around you. Share your pictures, poetry and comments with us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

This is the third of our weekend challenges for members and supporters. This challenge has been designed so that it can be done in your house or garden, so please take part from the comfort of your own home.

The small moments of joy in nature guide

Download the small moments of joy in nature challenge  

We've created a downloadable PDF with lots of tips for noticing the nature and wildlife around you. You could print it out or save it on your mobile.

Children in a rose garden

Listen to the sounds of nature

Sit near an open window or find a spot at the back of your garden. Then sit very still, without making a sound for three minutes. Perhaps you could hear the wind in the trees, the chirping of a small bird or the beating wings of an insect. When the time is up, you could draw a picture or write a poem about the sounds of the world around you. Why not listen to some of our nature clips to get an idea of what you might hear?

Chaffinch at Castle Ward, Northern Ireland

Teach yourself how to recognise different birdsong

Listen to the dawn chorus wherever you are with this immersive recording of birdsong. You'll be able to hear robins, jenny wrens, song thrushes and more.

Bee on a blue cornflower

Buzzing bees

Listen to bees

Wind down with a stroll through the meadow at Charlecote Park

Hear the wind rustling

Listen to the wind rustling in the trees

Audio clips ©The British Library

Family looking out a window

Look at how nature changes 

Choose one thing to look at. This could be a tree blooming with apple blossom, the sky, a plant on your windowsill or spiderweb on the washing line. How does it look at different times of day? You could even go out after dark to see how it looks in the moonlight. Try out one of our '50 things' activities 'No.1 get to know a tree' to get you started.

" I have been enjoying the birds from my third-floor flat balcony. Being in central London they often get lost in the noise and bustle but so far I've seen woodpeckers, parakeets, starlings, thrushes, great tits and blue tits plus the usual pigeons. I have also been watching live streams of bird feeders in other places bringing other bits of nature inside."
- National Trust supporter
Children's arts and crafts

Make something inspired by nature 

Collect sticks, leaves and stones to create some wild art. Or paint your favourite animal on a pebble. If you don’t have a pebble you could draw a flower you’ve seen on the ground using chalk or paint a picture of your favourite tree. Or you could even have a go at colouring in some of our favourite spring wildlife.

Children looking at a bug

Discover something new about nature 

Do you know the name of the tree in your garden or outside your window? Perhaps you've found a leaf and want to know what kind of tree or plant it comes from. How many different birds or creepy crawlies can you spot or hear in 20 minutes? To get you in the mood, learn more about the animals, insects and birds our rangers look after.

" Just watching nature brings joy. The sycamore tree in front of the house – we comment daily on the changes, which birds are in it, when the leaves will come."
- National Trust supporter
People looking at artwork

Share

We’d love to see your poems, paintings and pictures inspired by the moments of joy nature has given you. Share your stories on our social media, and with friends and family. Can you think of someone special to send a drawing or painting to?