Outdoor Secrets Companion and Buckley books

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  • Hello all,

    Just a quick question.  Would anyone like to comment on the Outdoor Secrets Companion who just has it or has used it as to what it would be like for a 4th grader who’s never done nature study (other child is 6) and for a mama who’s never done nature study either? 

    Also, has anyone used the Buckley nature books?  My second idea was to use these as a springboard for nature study and plan things myself – less desireable as I’m a novice. 

    And I guess one more question – has anyone used Barb’s stuff (she’s Harmony Art Mom or at the site called “Handbook of Nature Study”)?

    Thanks, Michelle


    We’re using the Outdoor Secrets companion guide, but for a kindy and 8yo (he’s kind of grade 2/3).  Don’t know, but it seems a little young for a 4th grader, but he/she could tag along during the stories, etc.  My 12 yo likes to listen but not as his main science course. 

    We haven’t done much nature study ourselves…I’m just not good keeping up with it.  My boys spend a lot of time outside (backyard, camping, fishing on occasion w/ dad, etc.). 

    I have tried the site you mentioned and although lots of people love it, it wasn’t for us, at least not right now.  We do have the Handbook of Nature Study book and use it as a reference tool, it’s a great book worth having. 

    I’ve never heard of the Buckley nature books, well, I don’t think I have:)  HTH


    If you are just getting started on Nature Study, it would work to help get her to start focusing on what Nature Study is.  You would probably need to do an actual science class in addtition to the Nature Study.  Charlotte said that Nature Study was to allow a child to make her own connections to the more studied science.  (Besides, I am going to use it this year to help my 3 & 5 grader understand what I want in a nature notebook… =)  )

    We are also doing 106 Days of Creation and Considering God’s World, which look to be very good.  Next year we will do either Apologia astronomy or botany, which by the way come with a jounal type workbook.  It has all kinds of things in it like copywork, etc.  I also plan on the zoology course.

    I nave never heard of the Buckley nature book either.  Sorry!

    I have seen Barb’s site and am using her year 1 guide – not because I can’t or couldn’t do it myself (I was) I just thought that a “guide” would help me to introduce my daughter who wants to be an artist to things I want to do with her, since Barb has it on a paper instead of floating around in my head…you know, that “someday” list.  =)  I planned to do Picture Study on Monday and an art project on Wednesday (acrylics, oil, pastels, etc) for the aspiring artist to get familiar with the materials.  Yikes for me…=) 

    However, Barb wants you to listen to one song ten times over the 6 weeks.  I intend to listen to the entire thing over and over.  My girls enjoy classical music…my 11 yr old goes around “singing” the Mozart.  They have always gone to sleep to quiet instrumental music.  Currently, they are listening to one of my Kenny G (saxophine) cd’s at night and we are listening to Chopin. Great suggestion from Sonya:  start the CD on different tracks every time to insure “equal” exposure.  =)

    HTH, Sheila

    Thanks both of you for your input.  I will be reading up on nature study this summer and probably just jumping in informally as I think the outdoor secrets book looks too young for us.  The Buckley books look really good for science read alouds and they’re at Yesterdays Classics if you want to take a look.  This author also wrote “The Fairy Tale of Science”.

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