I have not purchased it in the past….because (ok….here you go), I was scared. Yep…I was completely afraid that I would fail at going on nature walks, my children wouldn’t get it…and well….it would be a waste of time and money.
OH, please please don’t get me wrong. We love being outdoors…and we love hiking around the woods (especially behind our house…we have been on some great adventures)…but, I really did not know if the children would truly enjoy sitting down and learning some of the things i had been reading about in the Handbook of Nature by Comstock. Me…I LOVE IT….the poetry, the information, the gentle way of sitting and falling in love with God’s creation…but, I did not know if they would… and…they did!
So, here is a recap of our first few weeks with our Nature Study……I hope you don’t mind me combining them….
This is a picture of one of our nature walks. Dad took a day off of work and I jumped at the opportunity for all of us to walk some trails together. That does not happen very often and there are some trails I will not walk alone….so, this was great fun! 3 miles…2 hours and lots of laughter!
On this particular walk, we did not see any chickadees, and I never could get a photo of one, but we did see a lot of them on our back patio….
The children enjoyed listening to me read Comstock’s Nature Book, our field guide, the links within the guide for listening to chickadees (this was a favorite)…and then…we pulled up the Hodgepodge website and learned how to draw chickadees with their great tutorial.
I only had my oldest fill out the information. I am working with my other two children utilizing a writing program…and had them focus on that while he completed most of the information on the chickadee. (we are working on spelling…but, I thought this was a great start…and he really enjoyed it!)
A few days later….after we finished our chickadees, we went on the nature walk in the picture above. During that walk, as you can see in the picture, Daddy took time to discuss the trees we found twigs from. The kids were a little interested, but we had to keep it short and sweet.
We returned home…and the children all sat around the table working on their ‘twig’ nature drawings Again, I only had my oldest fill in some of the information about the twigs, but the other two enjoyed watching, learning, reading and drawing.
So….we have started. I think as we become more accustomed to our nature walks and journals, we will enjoy these studies quite a bit. My only struggle is trying to find a good schedule. The nature walks were so good for our family…getting out with the children and just enjoying nature together, but also pulling them in. We found many other interesting treasures on our walks…a few winter weeds and some quartz…. We have not finished our ‘nature journals’ on those yet and hope to post that next week!
How are you doing on your nature walks? Are you joining in the Nature Challenge? It is fun and I am thankful I do not feel pressured to do all of it…and am just easing into this new journey!