Friday, November 12, 2010

Nature Notebooks

When I mentioned nature books last week, Michelle asked for more information.  There is a good description of a nature notebook at Simply Charlotte Mason, but perhaps our own personal account will inspire!

When asked his favorite school subject ,Gavin never hesitates before saying, "Nature!"  He began keeping a nature notebook when he was five, but I'm sure he would have embraced the idea at age three or four if I had presented it.  (Maddie and Owen were both four when they began theirs.)  The idea is simple and easily adaptable to each child's personality and abilities. 

Each child keeps their own sketch book.  They  generally draw or color what they observe on our weekly nature walks or things they find in the yard, but they also do bark rubbings, tape feathers, paste photos, or write descriptions in their books.  I sometimes suggest things for them to draw (like the nest that fell out of the tree this afternoon), but I generally leave the creativity up to them and allow each book to represent its owner.  It is fun to see them  find ways to record what fascinates them  While Gavin's book has elaborate drawings, Maddie's is filled with flower petals and colorful feathers and Owen has a different leaf on almost every page.   Above all, each book is reflection of the handiwork of God.

Lord, our Lord
How majestic is your name in all the earth.

Psalm 8:1

Note: I am a decidedly inside girl.  Sometimes I  simply cannot convince myself to take the kids out for a walk.  It is too cold.  It is too hot.  It is too breezy. It might rain.  It doesn't take much to keep me in.  On weeks like those, the kids still add to their nature books by drawing something in the yard or even scouring the house for ideas.  Gavin has a wonderful sketch in his book of a branch from last year's Christmas tree!


  1. Oh, Kristin~

    I am *also* a decidedly inside girl. :) Love your description on that. :)

  2. THANKS for the post!! Great idea. I actually have to get a few more school supplies that we've recently run out of so I'm adding these to my list. :)

  3. We can be 'decidedly inside girls' together. I do not *heart* any kind of Science whatsoever. Maybe I can atleast get into the habit of telling the kids to look out the dining room window, and draw the crazy squirrels :)

  4. I see that I'm joining D.I.G. a little late...

    (can I be in your and Stacy's club?)

    or is it your's and Stacy's...maybe I should join a Grammar club instead!?!

  5. I am much more into grammar than science! I am the grammar police of my house. I think it is "your and Stacy's" because it is one club that we are both part of. If we each had our own club, it would be "yours and Stacy's." :-) And that, I'm sure, is all you wanted to know about grammar for today. :-)


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