Monday 28 January 2013

Winter Nature Study is it Possible ?

Who are you kidding ? Taking the kids out in the blustery cold, rain or snow. Do I have to ? It's to cold to go outdoors. It's raining. Is it worth it or is there something else I could do ? .....

These are just a few of the thoughts that fly through my mind when I consider doing Nature Study in Winter.

Nature Journaling in winter is not impossible it requires some foresight and planning.

Some options to consider
    • Rug up and go for short walks with your camera, take some photo's then come home and learn about what you found on your walk. Search for anything with colour in your environment and observe it for a while. 
    • Make a bird feeder to feed the winter birds near your home and hang it near a window so you can watch the birds from the safety of your home.
    • Pick an animal a week to study and borrow books from the library and search YouTube for good information.
    • Follow the Handbook of Nature Study Website .
    • Go to your local green grocer and buy a new fruit each week. Take time to study it in depth with suplemental materials from the library and internet.
    • Make use of your zoo membership and visit a Zoo near you and choose an animal to learn about. Take your drawing things with you and draw the animal you have chosen for that week.
    • Make animal foot casts
    • Explore your own garden and search for some winter colour. I did this a couple of years ago and was surprised at just how much colour there is when I was least expecting it.
    • Find something that your family can turn into a tradition. We go to Wild Nights Zoo after Dark in winter.
    • Grow a windowsill garden and if the sill is too cold bring it further indoors and put it on a table near the window. Document the process.
    • Read beautiful living books by authors such as: Holling Clancy Holling and Sterling North

      Else where on the www

        So whether you are in the throws of planning your year ahead or in the middle of a deep snowy winter take some time and consider your options for Nature Study, create regular opportunities so that you don't miss out.

        If Nature Journaling is a new concept to you then pop on over to TT - Nature Journaling for some resources on how to start and what to do.

        Remember: Knowledge in one "subject" helps us to understand another. All the information your children are gathering in their nature study lessons, and the habits of observation they are acquiring, will form an excellent foundation for their future education. (CMC Page 259 Karen Andreola)


        This post is part of The Schoolhouse Review Crew Blog Cruise: Winter Nature Study. Take some time and pop on over and be encouraged to do Nature Study in Winter.

        This post is linking with Carnival of Homeschooling hosted over at Dave Out Loud.


        1. Thanks for all the great links!

        2. I'm not much for formal nature studies. We have done lots of observation over the years but not necessarily as a formal study and not usually in winter. Just an "isn't that cool". There are different things to observe in winter than in summer and it is good to be reminded of that!

          1. Tess I love the idea of formal Nature Studies and that is my goal but alas life happens and it's not something we engage in often. Saying that I must confess we do a fair amount of informal learning here because my husband is a passionate naturalist being a zoo keeper.
            I agree with you writting this post helped me focus on the fact that there are special things to see in winter. Happy exploring.

        3. Thanks for the encouragement to get out despite the cold. Tomorrow we just might bundle up to do a bit of chilly nature study.

          1. Would love to hear more about your adventure. Enjoy

        4. it is surprising where colour can be found in the winter, even with snow everywhere, there's reds, browns, greens, blues... so much if you just take a moment to really look.


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