Outdoor Art Maker

Step 1: See Step 2: Hear Step 3: Share

Badge Goal: When I’ve earned this badge, I’ll know how to look at nature like an artist and make my own outdoor art. (Daisy Outdoor Art Maker Badge Requirements)

Leaders: Plan a day at the beach with your troop. Before the trip, have the scouts decide which of the activities they want to do, then be sure to pack them on the day of your trip! Each one of these activities can be done in under an hour. Invite family members as well, so the scouts can share what they have learned with others.


Complete the steps for the Buddy Camper badge to help the scouts prepare for the trip. They will learn how to make a kaper chart, plan a simple meal, pack a bag, learn to tie a square knot and have a knot-tying contest, and take a hike.

Now, do a TAKE ACTION Project! What is a Take Action Project? It's not a community service project, like a beach cleanup. A Take Action project identifies a problem, then comes up with a solution.

  • Community service: beach cleanup day
  • Take Action Project: put more trash cans on the beach

The Outdoor Journey

Sorry, no badge for the journey. I know, right?

Badge Requirements

Step 1: See the colors of nature (choose one)

☐ Make a colorful painting outdoors.

Use the beach as your inspiration for your artwork.

Supplies: paper, paints (watercolors, etc.), a clipboard or other hard surface to paint on, water and cloths to clean up with.

  1. First, decide what type of art you wish to do. Watercolors? Acrylics? Oils? Each has it's own unique method of painting and will convey a different look.
  2. Now, pick your subject. Do you want a landscape? No, not the orientation of your paper, although that's an important concideration. A landscape is a scenic view of an area, like the entire beach, or a lake. What about a painting of an object you found on the beach? Shells, seaweed, and seagulls would each make a lovely subject to paint.
  3. Don't just limit yourself to paints - what else can you use to create your masterpiece? Maybe your painted could be on a piece of driftwood. Or, you could include some sand to decorate your landscape. Be creative! How did using items from nature change your artwork? Would you have ended up with the same result had you used regular paper?

☐ Have a color race

The colors of the coast range from soothing tans, blues, and greys of the sand and water to the bright, vibrant colors of the beachgoers. What's your favorite?

Supplies: tally sheet, pencils, timer

  1. Choose a color to wear. It can be any color - be creative!
  2. Once at the beach, pick a buddy that is wearing a different color than you are.
  3. Take a look around. What colors do you see? Make a HYPOTHESIS as to what color you think you will find the most of based upon what you just observed.
  4. Have an adult set a timer for 10 minutes . . .
  5. . . . and GO! Try to find as many items as you can that are the same color as what you or your partner are wearing. Be a good citizen and practice the Leave No Trace principles. Don't disturb creatures or plants, but do pick up (safely!) any trash.
  6. When ten minutes are up head back to your leader. Record the number of items your found for your teams colors.
  7. Which color won? Was it the color you predicted in your hypothesis? If not, why do you think it wasn’t?  Remember, in science it’s perfectly ok to be wrong!  That just means you get to try again.

Step 2: Hear the sounds of nature (choose one)

☐ Make a maraca—and dance!

Close your eyes and imagine you are at the beach. What sounds do you think you might hear? The waves crashing onto the shore? Seagulls? Harbor Seals? Which one do you like the best?

Supplies: empty water bottles (reuse those plastic ones!) with the wrapper removed and the cap on, markers/stickers/etc. to decorate the bottles, funnel (useful for pouring stuff into the bottle).

  1. Make sure the bottle you are reusing is clean and dry.
  2. Decide what you are going to put in your bottle - sand, rocks, small bits of driftwood are all good! What's not good? Living or dead plants and animals!
  3. Now, experiment!
    • Fill three bottles with different amounts of sand (1/3 full, 1/2 full, and 2/3 full), then put the caps on and SHAKE! Do they sound the same, or different?
    • Now, fill three bottles 1/2 full with sand, sand + rocks, and rocks. Put the caps back on and SHAKE! They will each sound different due to the different materials in each. Which do you like best?
    • Can you think of a different combination to try? Do it!
  • Time to get creative! Decorate your maraca any way you'd like. A beach theme is good, but it's your art so create what you want.
  • All done? Take your maracas and boogie down in the sand! Shake them in time to the waves. Sway with them in time to the wind. Dance however you'd like!

☐ Search for sounds in nature

Find a comfy spot on the beach. Close your eyes and just listen to the sounds you hear. Now, go on a sound scavenger hunt!

Supplies: Sound Scavenger Hunt worksheets, pencils

  1. Partner up with a buddy.
  2. Search for as many sounds on the worksheet as you can. Remember to not go too far and pay attention to your surroundings.
  3. Hear something not on the list? Add it in yourself.  Don’t forget to draw a picture of it!
  4. How many sounds did you find? Do you think you'd hear the same sounds in a park? Why or why not?

Step 3: Share your outdoor art (choose one)

☐ Make a “Leave No Trace” picture

"Leave No Trace" is a set of guidelines created to help protect and preserve our environment. In the Girl Scout Law we all promise to "use resources wisely" and to "make the world a better place", so following the Leave No Trace guidelines is something we should all do.

Supplies: paper, pens, paint, crayons, stickers, etc.

  1. With your leader or your parents, visit the Leave No Trace website (https://lnt.org/) to learn more about the guidelines.


    Here are some from the Girl Scouts!
    - Know before you go
    - Choose the right path
    - Trash your trash
    - Leave what you find
    - Be careful with fire
    - Respect wildlife
    - Be kind to other visitors
  2. Now, draw a picture showing how you can help the oceans and coasts by doing one of these items.
  3. Share your picture with your family, friends, classmates, or another troop! Spread the word!


☐ Perform a play outdoors

"All the world's a stage, And all the men and women merely players;" ~ William Shakespear

Art has many forms: drawing, painting, sculpting, singing, dancing, and acting are just a few. Channel your inner actor and put on a play for your friends and family!

Supplies: will largely depend on the play, but props, costumes, chairs for the audience . . .

  1. Get together with your troop and decide on what you want your play to be about. Your troop helping the ocean? Pretend to be the Flower Friends and how they use the Leave No Trace Philosophy on a trip to the beach? How about pretending to be a sea animal, wishing that people would help clean up the planet?
  2. Decide on props, costumes, etc.
  3. Practice, practice, practice!
  4. Show time!
CSULA Department of Geosciences and the Environment
Pasadena City College Department of Geology  
    © Sonjia Leyva 2018