I find the above quote to be most appropriate. We don't need any special expensive curriculum or textbooks in order for our children to learn about nature. They are naturally curious and if we were to force them indoors with a textbook to learn about such things, they would resist.
This could be done once or twice a week - again depending on what your kids can handle.
As your child creates new entries in his journal, he is creating a keepsake. Something that he should be able to look back through for years to come.
Finally, your own back yard can lend itself to the study of nature. Currently, our family lives in a neighborhood where we have 1/5 of an acre and we find plenty to observe here. We have a bird box attached to our deck that is visited by birds each year. We are able to lift the lid to look in at the eggs and watch as the birds hatch and grow. In the past, I have taken pictures of the birds in the nest every couple of days. We took the pictures and lined them up to see the changes that happened in such a short period of time. We also have tulip bulbs in our yard as well as Black-Eyed Suzies and maple trees.
For your flower of the month, it may be possible to find seeds of the flower to put in a baggie to tape on your page.
Other indoor nature studies could include animal studies.
You don't have to study owls. You can study just about any animal you wish.
- Handbook of Nature Study by Anna Comstock
- The Beginning Naturalist by Gale Lawrence
- The Burgess Bird Book for Children by Thorton Burgess (free download)
- Parables from Nature by Margaret Gatty (free download)
Other resources for nature study:
- Check out Harmony Art Mom's Outdoor Hour Challenges.
- Tanglewood Curriculum has a very inexpensive Nature Notebook download that I have used for years.
- Check your local state parks for summer classes. In Pennsylvania, your local park may develop a class if you call and request one. Codorus State Park has done this for us in the past.