Enriching Everyday: Nature Study Edition
The glories of nature amaze me still . . . even after
35 so many years! The Creator of all speaks to the created through that which He has made, designed and purposed. I love the many scriptures that speak of the LORD's creation and the beauty that makes Him evidenced in the very thing which He made. The thumbprints of God are out there, everywhere and in every living thing. The small speckled ridges in a gloriously colored conk shell. The luscious green in a small meadow full of peaceful grazing goats. The aroma of the deep wooded forest and the beautifully spun spider's web hung at the top of a tall pine tree. All of these wonders are meant to point us to Him, therefore; Nature Study is where my family will begin Enriching Everyday in our home.
"For the invisible things of Him, from the creation of the world, are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made." Romans 1:20
We began our Nature Study journals about 2 years ago, but alas, it has slipped from our long list of priorities. Mom is initiating this one. I believe it essential to my family's growth and in the development of joy in God's creation for each of my children. There is much to be gained collectedly and individually by studying nature.
Nature Study 101 - Here are some superb resources for Nature Study!
Wonderful resources on this site! There are many Free resources, but the seasonal Nature Study purchases are well worth the investment. We have bought a couple of Outdoor Hour Challenges with the Composer/Artist Study included & we loved each moment using these tools.
Practical Pages: Love Notebooking ideas and form drawing inspiration from this lovely homeschooling mother. Lots of free downloads worth peeking at.
Ambleside Online - FREE online curriculum. They have wonderful information and curriculum ideas for Nature Studies.
The Handbook of Nature Study: Essential resource for studying nature. Especially if you are using the Outdoor Hour Challenges mentioned above, it is an worth while purchase for your homeschool library. HERE is a FREE download - you can use your computer or Ereader.
The Boy Scout Field Guide: This is NOT your Boy Scout's Manual - it is different and completely separate, but wonderful! We use it frequently when just on outings to our local Nature Center. It is an excellent educational tool and contributes to almost any discussion on nature.
There are many options when studying nature. To make the most and decipher what elements are most productive for your family, experiment with a little of each study form. You can utilize Nature Journals, Nature Notebooking, Natural Science, Nature Crafts, Nature Poetry & Nature Photography. We use a combination of methods in our homeschool. The most effective means of Nature Study is always parent mentoring and involvement. This is not a huge issue for us, seeing that my husband and I both are 5 year scouting volunteers with the Boy Scouts of America and our family's most frequent recreation is camping. I promise, even if getting outdoors and hiking halfway up the mountain in not your cup of tea, Nature Study with your child is an amazing experience. Watching them discover and learn is just the beginning. I find myself constantly renewed by their sense of awe in God's creation. It's good for the spirit folks, give it a go.
Here is a great video from Milestones Academy on how to get started with Nature Studies:
* Be looking tomorrow for Part II, Enriching Everyday with Nature Study. I will be sharing our family's Nature Study plans. *