Celebrate Earth Day with Swedish children’s character Skogsmulle.
Here you can find a story, a craft and a (city) nature walk.
The Story of Skogsmulle: A Read Aloud
It was a wonderful day in the forest. The sun was shining and the wind in the trees sounded like music. Suddenly, there was a tremendous rush of wind through the tree-tops, making the branches bend so much they almost touched the ground! At once, a dark cloud came across the sky, thunderbolts shot out of the dark and it began to rain heavily.
Just then, when nature was at its most dangerous, I was created. The rain stopped, the clouds disappeared and the sun came back out. “Kollikok! Kollikok!” could be heard
throughout the forest. The animals on the ground, the birds flying in the air, and the fishes swimming in the lakes all stopped to listen. All of the animals of the forest came together to try to figure out what made the noise “Kollikok.” That’s when they found me lying on a bed of moss. They decided to call me Skogsmulle, or Forest Mulle.
Since I didn’t have any clothes, they started working together to make me something to wear. The birds collected leaves and moss. The spiders spun webs to use as thread. And the ants brought pin needles to sew it together. Soon enough, I had a wonderful moss green suit to call my own. But the moles and mice wanted me to have a tail, which I could use to help clean the brush as I walk through the forest. The animals gnawed and gnawed, and finally made me a tail made of roots and grasses. Lastly, they me made a beautiful hat of birch bark.
A bird, who had been watching the whole time, flew over me, dropping one of her tail feathers. But just as I went to pick it up, the wind blew it into the nearby river. “Oh no,” I cried, and wiped the feather dry on a cranberry bush. Some of the cranberry juice got on the feather, coloring it a beautiful red. “Look, it is even more beautiful now. It matches my birch bark hat too!”
For days, I wandered around the forest like this. But my feet soon tired of being pricked by thorns and stones. Sten and Anna, two children that lived near the forest, often heard the noise “Kollikok! Kollikok!” One day they decided to find the source of the unusual sound. Once they saw me, and my very badly beaten feet, Anna gave away her shoes. “There,” she said. “Now you won’t get thorns in your feet.” Now fully dressed, I became excited to explore the forest even more.
Now my goal is to teach all the children I meet about nature and how important it is to take care of it!
About the Skogsmulle program-
Skogsmulle is an outdoor early childhood learning pedagogy developed in Sweden in the 1950s by Goest Frohm. The program aims to get children outside in nature to play and explore. It is estimated that over 1 million Swedish children have participated in a Skogsmulle program.
Use the included nature scavenger hunt to go on a nature walk. Check off as many items you can find. You can download the scavenger hunt here.
Collect items on your walk like sticks and leaves. Use them to create a nature collage (picture from sparkle and splatter blog).
Find some rocks outside and take them home. Never take rocks that belong to someone’s yard. Be sure to ask an adult to help you find rocks that are OK to take. Paint the rocks with colorful pictures. You can keep them as a household decoration, give them away as gifts or hide them in your neighborhood to brighten up someone’s day!