General Information - Ladybug Nature Walks
- Nature educators guide children in small groups to notice plants and animals. We move slowly and stop often. Walks are child-directed and open-ended. Children learn through questions, observation, stories, and play. Adults enjoy discovering new parks and connecting with other caregivers.
- Each child gets to borrow a small ladybug backpack for the walk containing a few simple tools for exploring.
- Walks take place rain or shine.We are outside 100% of the time.
- Walks last one hour.
- Content is geared for children ages 15 months-6 years. (Younger siblings under 15 months are welcome. Please give us their names and ages when prompted during registration.)
- We ask that preschool groups, classrooms, and organizations with more than five children schedule a customized group Ladybug Walk. Find information about customized group Ladybug Walks here.
Upcoming Walks: Times, dates, and locations
|Tues||September 19||10:00-11:00am||Midland Park (E Portland)||Sign up here!|
|Tues||September 26||10:00-11:00am||Council Crest Park (SW Portland)||Sign up here!|
|Tues||October 3||10:00-11:00am||Columbia Children's Arboretum (NE)||Sign up here!|
|Tues||October 10||10:00-11:00am||Sellwood Riverfront Park (SE)||Sign up here!|
|Tues||October 17||10:00-11:00am||Argay Park (NE)||Sign up here!|
|Tues||October 24||10:00-11:00am||Kennilworth Park (SE)||Sign up here!|
|Tues||October 31||10:00-11:00am||Halloween at Northgate Park (N)||Sign up here!|
|Tues||November 7||10:00-11:00am||Alberta Park (NE)||Sign up here!|
|Tues||November 14||10:00-11:00am||Berrydale Park (E)||Sign up here!|
|Tues||November 21||10:00-11:00am||Mt. Tabor Park (SE)||Sign up here!|
|Tues||November 28||10:00-11:00am||Riverview Natural Area (SW)||Sign up here!|
"Access Pass" pricing
Ladybug Walk fees are charged using an "Access Pass" pricing model. Walks are listed as $5 per child. Children 15-24 months need to register but attend for free. With resources from the Parks Local Option Levy (Parks Levy), we can offer new payment options for City of Portland residents that allow you to choose payment levels based on your needs. Register for a free Access Pass to receive an ongoing discount of 25, 50, 75, or 90%. No proof of income is required.
When prompted during registration, please list the following information:
- First and last name and phone number of the adult attending with the child(ren)
- First and last name and phone number of any additional adults attending
- First name of any siblings joining the walk who are younger than 15 months old
Adults coming on the walk - we need your help!
When families arrive on site they will be assigned to walk in a group of 5-10 children (and the adults attending with those children). Each group is led by one of our preschool nature educators. This will be your traveling group for the entire program.
Here are ways we hope you can support us as we guide the group:
- Plan to be engaged the whole time. (Put aside your phone and mental to-do list. Explore along with your child.)
- Dress for the weather! Plan for rain. Add a layer. Arrive with footwear that can walk through wet grass or along a muddy trail.
- Get curious along with your child. Slow down, get down on the ground, and look around.
- Slow your pace. What a gift to have this time to explore together. Take advantage of it.
- Let go of having answers. Instead of trying to fill your child's head with facts or things that you think are interesting, follow their lead. Young children are more interested in the process of exploring than caring about names and nature facts.
Meet the Educators
While exploring with a nature educator, children borrow a small Ladybug backpack containing a few tools that are easy to clean:
- Magnifying lens
- Small plastic tub with a lid for collecting
- Metal Spoon for digging
- Laminated color wheel for matching
- Plastic Bug box for looking closely at creatures
- Plastic paintbrush
- Small toy insect for imaginative play