I-Spy at Tandle Hills

I-Spy at Tandle Hills

Damian had some time off work earlier this week so the five of us headed out to Tandle Hills Country Park. It isn’t somewhere we have been to before but it is a place I have seen pop up on local home education groups so I thought it would make a nice day out.

We headed over first thing and in a bid to keep Mr D and Miss E engaged we took along a book, i-SPY Nature. If you’re like me you probably remember these books! My Dad said he recalled these too from the 60’s. They were recently relaunced and we were sent a copy to take a look at.

The park itself is a really good size with two fantastic play areas, a cafe (which was closed when we first arrived) and lots of space to run around! We also found a stream, much to the children’s delight, so we had a splash in there too.

The i-spy book went down really well. It is a pocket sized book with plenty of things to search for, split into sections like at the beach, forest, woods and hedges and rivers and ponds. Miss E took charge of this book and was delighted to find dandelions, magpies and different trees and flowers.

I spy nature book

We had great fun identifying a red campion flower and talking about why we thought that was what we had found. I can see that this book will be a permanent fixture as we head out for various walks. Once you’ve ticked off a certain amount you can send off for a certificate and badge.  We were also sent a copy of i-SPY On a train journey and Mr D is keen for us to get the train soon so we can take this book with us – so I think this will be a plan for next week.

I spy nature book red campion

We also took a couple of small tubs with us to collect leaves in and the following day we used the leaves alongside the fabulous Nature’s Day: Out and About and a twinkl worksheet to identify the trees they were from. We enjoyed doing this and it was also an opportunity to practice some letters and sounds with Mr D as we sounded out the tree names.


We then did some leaf rubbings and then got the paints out to paint a picture of out walk. It was lovely listening to them both chatter away and recall the things we had seen (the stream and the magpies mostly!).

leaf rubbings

After we had done these bits and pieces Mr H had woken up so we had a read of the Nature’s Day section on leaves and then talked about what would happen in the autumn time. We then had a read through the lovely A Journey Through Nature. We focused mainly on the pages on the woods and fields and hedges as that was most relevant to our walk, but there is so much to go through with this book and it is one we will use as the basis of a lot of out autumn and winter learning as we explore the seas, the rainforests and the wider world. The children really enjoyed the bold block colours and illustrations in this book and I caught Mr D reading through it on his own later on in the day when I was having a tidy up.

journey through nature

Tandle Hills is a lovely place to head to if you’re local to Manchester and I am sure we will be back there soon, armed with our i-spy and other nature books.



  1. 8th August 2016 / 07:52

    We have a couple of the i-SPY books, such great ways to get kids looking more at their surroundings! Thanks for sharing with #ReadWithMe

  2. 8th August 2016 / 10:11

    I loved the I Spy books as a child and my daughter now has a set of the nature books. We just keep forgetting to take them out with us!!


  3. sarahmo3w
    9th August 2016 / 04:56

    Wow, lots of lovely ways to learn! We had lots of I-Spy books when I was little and always took them on car journeys. They’re a great idea for learning and for keeping kids out of mischief!

  4. 9th August 2016 / 05:36

    I remember the i-spy books too. Such lovely learning activities too, sounds like your children were very inspired 🙂

  5. 15th August 2016 / 14:44

    Wow, blast from the past. I used to love my I Spy books. I even had one on car number plates. How sad is that!!! #readwithme

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