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Wild Nights Out

Written by Chris Salisbury

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Wild Nights Out Review

Ecological and Environmental Interest - Non Fiction Featured Books for 11+ readers Featured Books for 7+ readers Featured Books for 9+ readers Non-Fiction People / Places The Natural World

An inspirational guide to nocturnal nature exploration packed with activities and information

The Magic of Exploring the Outdoors After Dark

Calling all outdoor adventurers who want to walk on the wild side by the light of the moon! While there’s no shortage of brilliant books to inspire and guide nature exploration in young adventurers, Chris Salisbury’s Wild Nights Out is the first nature guide to focus on night-time activities, which gives both the book and its activities a distinct and decidedly magical edge.


With a foreword by Chris Packham, this is a brilliant book for grown-ups to use with 7+-year-olds who share their passion for the great outdoors. The text addresses adults, as opposed to chattily speaking to children direct, but with a background in theatre and environmental education, and currently working as professional storyteller alongside directing the Call of the Wild Foundation programme for educators-in-training, the author is well-placed to advise on how to engage young explorers.


As for the activities, the book covers a blend of games, walks and sensory experiences, the latter of which form an excellent foundation from which to explore the world at night, with exercises designed to focus and enhance one’s sensory perceptions. Then there are practical activities covering the likes of learning to call for owls, detect bats and understand the night sky alongside immersive theatrical activities, such as hosting nocturnal animal performances and fireside storytelling. With black-and-white illustrations throughout and activities to last the entire summer holidays, this certainly shines an inspiring and informative light on night-time nature.

Joanne Owen

Other Info

Wild Nights Out Synopsis

Learn how to call for owls, walk like a fox and expand your sensory perceptions. Wild Nights Out is a wonderful new hands-on guide for those who wish to take kids (of all ages) outdoors for fun, thrilling nighttime nature adventures. Parents, grandparents, teachers and nature educators alike will discover a wealth of unique activities to explore the natural world from dusk till dawn. Alongside games, walks and exercises to expand our senses, storyteller and outdoor educator Chris Salisbury will bring this unexplored nocturnal dimension to life with lore about badgers, bats and minibeasts as well as tales of the constellations and planets to share around the campfire.

In Wild Nights Out you can expect to find:

25 fun and informative games and activities

Practical information on how to conduct night walks safely

Animal facts and stargazing stories

Beautiful black-and-white illustrations throughout

Nature has so much to offer at night, so let Wild Nights Out be your guide to the dark. It will boost the resilience and self-confidence of children and adults, and instill a lifelong love of having fun in the outdoors when the sun goes down.

Wild Nights Out Press Reviews

'So inspiring! Reading Wild Nights Out is like being given an invitation to a whole new dimension of life. Exploring and nature spotting don't need to stop when the sun goes down. For grown-ups, children, and anyone in between, this book offers guidance, ideas, challenges to try and games to play in the dusk and dark. But, more than anything else, it encourages us to cross a threshold into a new world and go on a nocturnal ramble to look and listen for where the wild things are.'- Simon Reeve, author and broadcaster

'A fantastic mix of usefulness and imagination, of practical experience and love for the living world.'- Jay Griffiths, author of Kith and Wild: An Elemental Journey

'Chris Salisbury knows of what he speaks. This storyteller has been thoroughly drubbed in nature's mood swings and come up the wiser for it. Wild Nights Out is an inventive mapping of that accumulated knowledge. Long before it was even vaguely fashionable, Chris was walking the roads of wildness and story, and this book is a lovely testament to his devotion. Both pragmatic and poetic, Wild Nights Out will be a worthy companion for anyone who yearns for a fresh and unexpected relationship to the living world. There are big, powerful energies out there in the dark, and a few have slipped into this book, chewing on its edges.'-Dr Martin Shaw, author of Smoke Hole and Courting the Wild Twin

'Wild Nights Out is a masterful guide for night walks. Chock-full of engaging games and fascinating information, this book makes leading night-time excursions a joy. Chris Salisbury has created a magnificent and comprehensive resource for anyone who loves the night.'- Joseph Bharat Cornell, author of Sharing Nature, Deep Nature Play, and Flow Learning

'Chris Salisbury is a consummate guide to the night and its chrysalis-like capacity to convert us from sailors of safe harbors to celebrants of uncharted seas - wanderers amidst nocturnal creatures (like owls, bats, and badgers) or the existential conundrums that the night sky elicits (like Why are we here?). Chris doesn't resolve the frights and riddles of the dark, but deftly draws us in, supporting us to make our own dazzling discoveries and to be shape-shifted by our night-walk odysseys. Wild Nights Out: don't go into the dark without it.'- Bill Plotkin, PhD, author of Soulcraft and The Journey of Soul Initiation

'If you once wished the days to never end, with Chris's glorious and concise re-enchantment of the night, you too will soon become a nocturnal convert, willing your children to stay up and out as late as possible. Wild Nights Out isn't so much about conquering the fear of the dark but redeeming this realm through ancient and intrepid means of befriending it, inspiring wonderful ways to play beyond the reach of electricity's falsifying security.'-Sam Lee, folk singer, Radio 4 presenter, and Mercury Prize-nominated artist

'This book has been a long time coming in the nature education field, and finally Chris Salisbury has put down in words something that should be in every nature/environmental educator's pocket and on their shelf of well-thumbed pages. Wild Nights Out is neatly book ended with the question why is it dark? and takes the practitioner on a journey exploring this and many other questions about the shady side of the planet. It is not just Chris's inimitable poetry that make this such a great read, it is the enticing experiences and journeys into the night that Chris takes us on that we can easily replicate, adapt and conduct with our groups of learners which will help relate to and answer those questions of the night. This book is packed full of activities for immersing learners in the world of dusk to dawn that can be adapted for any age and gives the all-important health and safety tips to help people feel comfortable and yet still feel the nervous anticipation, excitement and beauty of the darkened hours. There are poems and stories, ways to use stories around the campfire, lots of natural history and 'tuning in' activities and titbits, journeys into different habitats - from the river to the seashore, and of course ways of magically interacting with the night sky. We miss out on this most important aspect of nature learning in a big way in our industrially lit world. This book will help the educator - and the learners they guide - fill in the gaps of our experiences, revelling in what is a magical kingdom, helping us see the night as a constant companion and explore those deeper questions about what it means to live on this beautiful planet and its 'dark side'. It is a must for all nature educators around the planet.'- Jon Cree, founding chair, Forest School Association; author of The Essential Guide to Forest School and Nature Pedagogy; veteran educator and nature connection trainer

'In his wonderful book, Wild Nights Out, Chris Salisbury reminds us of so many things forgotten. The night is truly fully half of our lives. Yet today we live as if we only experience the day. Through his wonderful stories, lore, science and accessible activities, Chris helps us remember that we are, as humans, at least half darkness. Through the journey of Wild Nights Out, we are remembering the part of us that has been hidden in recent times, and it's like meeting a long-lost relative that we truly love.'-Jon Young, author of Coyote's Guide to Connecting with Nature and What the Robin Knows

'Chris Salisbury is without doubt one of the world's foremost outdoor ecological educators, as I have seen myself over and over again at Schumacher College. In this marvellously well-written book, Chris shares his decades of wisdom and experience about how to bring children into the presence of the night as a living being, with her sounds, sights, smells, depths and imaginings. Even if you don't use this book with children specifically in mind, like me, you'll be enchanted from start to finish by its capacity to introduce you and people of all ages to the wonders of the night. You'll feel a powerful urge to go out into the night yourself with Chris and his book as guides to wake up your forgotten child's vivid perceptions of nature. Obey that urge and discover Gaia. Chris's book is a masterpiece - an important landmark in the growing literature on ecological education.'- Dr Stephan Harding, Deep Ecology Research Fellow, Senior Lecturer in Holistic Science, Schumacher College, Dartington, UK

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All versions of this book

ISBN: 9781603589932
Publication date: 03/06/2021
Publisher: Chelsea Green Publishing Co
Format: Paperback

Book Information

ISBN: 9781603589932
Publication date: 3rd June 2021
Author: Chris Salisbury
Publisher: Chelsea Green Publishing Co
Format: Paperback
Pagination: 224 pages
Suitable for: 11+ readers, 7+ readers, 9+ readers
Genres: Ecological and Environmental, Non-Fiction, People / Places, The Natural World
Collections: Brilliant Children's Books to Read this Summer, A Summer of Adventure - 50 Books to Inspire!, Spring has Sprung - 30 Eggcellent Easter Reads!,

About Chris Salisbury

Chris Salisbury founded WildWise in 1999 after many years working as an education officer for Devon Wildlife Trust. With a background in the theatre, a training in therapy and a career in environmental education, he uses every creative means at his disposal to encourage people to enjoy and value the natural world. Chris directs the acclaimed Call of the Wild Foundation programme for educators-in-training as well as Where the Wild Things Are, a rewilding adventure based at Embercombe in Devon. He is also a professional storyteller (aka 'Spindle Wayfarer') and is the co-founder and artistic director for the Westcountry and Oxford ...

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