Try to get outside with the whole family at least once each week. Give every family member a nature notebook in which to record their observations. Their entries could include pencil sketches, descriptions, watercolor paintings, or chalk drawings. Instruct children to draw what they see, not what they think something should look like. Be sure they label each entry with its name, location, and date observed. Use field guides to help identify children’s findings.
Resources for Nature Study
- Nature study lays the foundation for science lessons. Our nature notebook, Journaling a Year in Nature, will give you gentle seasonal prompts for each week of the year, inspiring quotes and tips, plus plenty of room to write, sketch, or paint your findings.
- Many of our elementary science courses have nature study ideas written into the lesson plans.
- The Handbook of Nature Study website provides 15-minute challenges on several aspects of nature: Garden, Insects, Trees, Mammals, Birds, and Seasonal.
- Our Charlotte Mason nature study handbook, Hours in the Out-of-Doors, will give you all of Charlotte’s tips and comments on how to enjoy this weekly time.
- If you would like some encouragement and ideas from a living book written for parents that has nature study woven into the plot line, read and enjoy Pocketful of Pinecones.
- Another excellent resource is Nature’s Notes: Bite-Sized Learning & Projects for All Ages.