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You are here: > Land Ecosystems > Exploring Forest Ecosystems

Includes forest activity guides, DVDs, creative games, useful references and engaging children's stories. Also includes resources for studying temperate rainforests, old growth forests, redwood forests, eastern deciduous forests and the elfin forests of chaparral ecosystems. A number of creative dendrology kits are also offered along with hands-on pine needle basket making kits, papermaking kits and papermaking supplies. Plant, leaf, stem, root identification kits are also available along with tree rounds (tree cookies) and kits for learning about tree rings.

  Forest Activity Kits and Resources
Forests provide wonderful learning opportunities for children and adults alike. This section features a wide selection of forest activity guides, DVD's and games for all ages.
 
  Tree Ring Study Kits and Tree Cross-Sections
Acorn Naturalists offers a wide selection of heat-treated tree limb cross sections procured from trimmings. These quality rounds range in size from 2" to 5" across by 1/4" to 1/2" thick. The rings on these cross sections vary in size and appearance depending on variations in climatic conditions where they grow and species variations. Oak species show characteristic radial rays. Tree rounds provide an ideal hands-on resource for introducing students to botany, forestry, dendrology and methods scientists use to determine past climatic conditions. Also available is a bark beetle life cycle demonstration kit, climate change kit, monocot/dicot kit, eastern and western tree round discovery kits, and light colored tree rounds for art projects.
 
  Children's Literature on Forests
This section offers a wide range of exemplary children's books that focus on forest plants, animals and ecology.
 
  Forest Animal Model Collection
Ranging in size from 3 to 5 inches, these hand-painted North American animals are perfect for creating habitat and food chain scenes or simply for creative play.
 
  Forest Animals Trace-A-Track Templates
These reusable, durable, washable life-size templates can be used for a wide range of activities. Create customized local animal track field guides, create animal scenarios including predator/prey games, or track matching games. You can also use these to teach advanced tracking techniques. Each template features a labeled front and back animal track. Paint permanent tracks on any surface, or use with water-based paints to create washable, ever-changing track patterns in schoolyard or camp settings. Rinse template in soapy water to clean. Create fun track patterns on camper or student t-shirts by spraying fabric inks over the template. Each set contains seven different species, with templates for both front and back tracks (for a total of 14 separate templates per set).
 
  Kind Fur® Replicas (swatches)
Replica fur (Kind Fur®) is an ideal resource for educators. Designed primarily to give children the look and feel of animal fur, these replicas go well with storytelling and discovery table activities. We need to emphasize, however, that these replicas are not study skins (they lack eye holes, ears, noses, paws and tails). On the other hand, unlike real fur, these replicas do not have special storage or treatment requirements. They also do not require knowledge of complex and ever-changing regulations regarding State of Origin fur tags, permits, transfers, and associated necessary record keeping.

Most importantly, Kind Fur® does not require trapping animals better left alive in the wild. Regarding these replicas, it is important to note that in nature there is tremendous variation in fur color, even on a single specimen, let alone among the same species in different locations or seasons. These replicas are close in appearance (and feel) to animal furs, but won't match perfectly with any given real fur. Also, as can be the case with skull replicas, high-quality faux fur can sometimes cost more than real fur.

While realistic in appearance, replica fur can always be identified by looking at the backing—replica fur have cloth fabric backing, as opposed to tanned animal hide. Twenty-five years ago, Acorn Naturalists made a concerted effort to encourage people to embrace the skull replica concept to reduce demand for real skulls. Acorn Naturalists is now pioneering the concept of replacing real fur with replica fur, or Kind Fur®.

You can download a complete description of all of the Kind Fur® replicas we offer by clicking here.

KIND FUR® SWATCHES (unboxed, two-sided, sewn). Perfect for carrying in a backpack for discussions on the trail or for setting out at a discovery table. These Kind Furs® are folded in half, and then hand-sewn around the edge. Each measures approximately 8 inches x 5 inches. $24.90 each. MIX OR MATCH 10 (SWATCHES), $22.41 each.

 
  Kind Fur® Replicas (boxed)
Replica fur (Kind Fur®) is an ideal resource for educators. Designed primarily to give children the look and feel of animal fur, these replicas go well with storytelling and discovery table activities. We need to emphasize, however, that these replicas are not study skins (they lack eye holes, ears, noses, paws and tails). On the other hand, unlike real fur, these replicas do not have special storage or treatment requirements. They also do not require knowledge of complex and ever-changing regulations regarding State of Origin fur tags, permits, transfers, and associated necessary record keeping.

Most importantly, Kind Fur® does not require trapping animals better left alive in the wild. Regarding these replicas, it is important to note that in nature there is tremendous variation in fur color, even on a single specimen, let alone among the same species in different locations or seasons. These replicas are close in appearance (and feel) to animal furs, but won't match perfectly with any given real fur. Also, as can be the case with skull replicas, high-quality faux fur can sometimes cost more than real fur.

While realistic in appearance, replica fur can always be identified by looking at the backing—replica fur have cloth fabric backing, as opposed to tanned animal hide. Twenty-five years ago, Acorn Naturalists made a concerted effort to encourage people to embrace the skull replica concept to reduce demand for real skulls. Acorn Naturalists is now pioneering the concept of replacing real fur with replica fur, or Kind Fur®.

You can download a complete description of all of the Kind Fur® replicas we offer by clicking here.

KIND FUR® (boxed, one-si ded, glued). Acorn Naturalists. These Kind Furs® are securely adhered with non-toxic water-based glue to the inside of a protective 12 inches long x 9 inches wide x 2 inches deep wooden slide-top box (custom crafted in the US for Acorn Naturalists' Kind Furs®). Students can study and feel the fur, and slide the protective lid over it when done. Boxes are labeled on the back, making it easy to set them out on a table for quiz games or activities such as matching a sample with skull, track or scat replicas. $32.90 each. MIX OR MATCH 10 (BOXED), $29.61 each.

 
  Forest Animal Rubber Stamps
Science and nature-oriented rubber stamp kits, including stamps of animal tracks, insects and nature images. Also in this section are colorful, non-toxic rubber stamp ink pads.
 
  Plant ID Displays, Reference Collections and Games
Included in this section are the sort key guides to trees, leaf and seed identification games, leaf collections, tree ring dating kits, stem identification kits and root, stem and leaf models.
 
  Forest Identification Guides
This section contains a variety of field guides and specialty identification references for the plants and animals that inhabit diverse forest environments.
 
  Pine Needle Basket Kits
This section features complete kits for creating beautiful pine needle baskets.
 
  Leaf Replicas (flexible positives)
Actual imprints of leaves that have been cast in flexible vinyl for use in art projects or as a tool for plant identification. Press with various colors of stamp pads or roll on different colors of block inks to make leaf prints using a brayer. (Note: we also offer a full range of colorful block inks and brayers - simply type "block ink" or "brayer" in the search area at the top of each page). Leaf replicas range in size from 4-9”.
 
  Papermaking Kits
This section contains several different kits for making paper from a wide variety of recycled materials. Also books and supplies for papermaking.
 
  Magnifiers, Loupes, Hand Lenses and 2-Way Viewers
This section contains a wide array of high quality observation equipment including magnifiers, jeweler's loupes, tripod magnifiers, magnifying glasses, linen counters, two-way viewers, hand lenses and lucite bug boxes.
 

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