I have 5 kids, 6 and under, so I like to keep things simple! I am considering doing Outdoor Secrets and Companion next fall with them. I will have a 2nd grader, 1st grader, and 3 preschoolers. My question is, does doing OS count as doing nature study, or do I need to have a separate time in the week that we do nature study? We have been trying to do some of the Outdoor Hour challenges this spring, but I am afraid doing OS along with the Outdoor Hour challenges is going to be tough for me to maintain for all of them. The kids love being outside, and we definitely do informal discussions about what we see outside. Is that enough for science?
FWIW, I will also be having my older 2 reading through the CLP Nature Readers to get some extra science in there.ShannonParticipant
If it were me I would read the Outdoor Secrets book to them. I personally didn’t do much in the companion book with my children though I did like the other library books they recommended to go along with each story. And then I’d be outside as much as your family enjoys, taking time to notice the tiny details and discover the little critters in their homes. But it doesn’t have to be anything official or documented. You don’t have to do anything other than enjoy nature and marvel and discuss in a very relaxed way. I think that is plently sufficient for science for these ages.
I’d love to hear an update on how life is for you with all the kids now!
Thanks, Shannon. I think I feel this obligation to put stuff in nature notebooks even though they aren’t that enthused about it. It’s like I think if we don’t document it, they didn’t learn it (though I know that’s not true). Life is pretty crazy with all the kids, but overall we have adjusted pretty well I think. They keep each other pretty good company! Why didn’t you like the Companion book?ShannonParticipant
You’ll have plenty of time to document in say, two or three years. Right now an enjoyable experience is what will make the deepest impression on the kids, not drawing the flower or writing notes. If they wanted to do it now, of course that would be fine, but if you are the one who is pushing it, I’d say wait two years and revisit that idea. Or have them document one thing a month, or one thing a season. Take the ‘have to’ things off your plate for now. You are doing wonderful things in your family and anything that causes you stress that isn’t truly needed needs to be dropped.
As for the Companion book, I didn’t find I used the different lesson plans(what to do each lesson day) or the order suggested in the Companion. I didn’t want to do many of the activities – either they just weren’t the kinds of things we usually do or they were things we had already done.missceegeeParticipant
I highly recommend Outdoor Secrets and the Companion books and study. I’m using them with dd6 and used with ds10 at that age and they are fabulous. We’ve loved every minute. There is some nature study included.
For NS, sometimes use photos, a rubbing or a list, it need not be a drawing or dry brush painting every time. In fact it’s not necessary to put everything in a nature notebook all the time. I would make a goal of adding to it periodically and work up from there. In the meantime, go out, use your senses, discover and wonder, find something to enjoy and call it done.BenitaParticipant
I agree with missceegee. We have used it as is and enjoyed it. One older child who didn’t get the opportunity to enjoy this at a younger age has read through it on her own and narrated it to me. I think the idea of nature study is to get out there and enjoy it and not to get to hung up on the resulting product.
Thanks, ladies. I feel better about things! We started reading Seed Babies today on my tablet (and they like it) and I requested some spring time picture books. Love to see things blooming and so exciting to see them learning the names for things! I think I have a hard time with this aspect of the CM method. There isn’t much to “show” for it. I don’t want to get them caught up doing busy work. Really only my oldest does much with drawing so far. I like the goal of monthly or once per season. We already have a first day of spring tradition of a picnic and walk at the park!sherazParticipant
You can always google coloring/diagrams pages of whatever you saw and let them color it, then slip it into a journal. You will have a portfolio papertrail and they will have something that triggers some memories.BenitaParticipant
I posted on a similar question earlier today. What about taking digital photos of the nature you encounter. Even kiddos can have rather inexpensive cameras. My 6 year old has a leap pad with a decent camera. The pictures can be saved and printed later to put into a little album for them. It could be fun. And it may lead them to want to draw/paint eventually.
- The topic ‘Outdoor secrets and/or nature study?’ is closed to new replies.