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Being a techie homeschool doesn’t mean we skip Nature Study. We love the outdoors. We’ve been patiently waiting for the rain to stop (because we lack rain gear, odd if you knew how much it rains here) so we can head outside. If you follow me on Pinterest you may have seen the excitement of Nature Study pins. If you’ve missed them, you can find the highlights (and extras) here. There are more to come. Be sure to follow my Nature Study board.

When I started homeschooling I thought Nature Study was a great idea. But like most things in life, I overcomplicated it. Here’s my new simplified plan.

Nature Study Handbook

There’s no way around this. A handbook is going to be your guide to the great outdoors. There are two ways to go: a general book such as Handbook of Nature Study (which is recommended by a few homeschool blogs I follow) or one local to where you live. We picked Nature Guide to the Victoria Region.

Once you’ve picked your handbook you can decide what aspect of nature you want to focus on during each study. Read the appropriate pages, and decide on what activity you want to do to reinforce learning. My go-to website for help is Handbook of Nature Study – Outdoor Hour Challenge.

Nature Study Activity #1 – Journal

This seems to be the norm. Most nature study blogs I have read have a journal which includes a place to draw what was seen and a place to write observations. This can be created from notebooking pages or by buying an art notebook (I recommend a spiral bound one) and using a scrapbooking stencil to add in borders and lines for drawings and observations.

If your kid(s) are like B, asking them to draw something specific returns a less than desired response. However, we both like taking photos. So we’ve swapped out the drawings for photos in our nature journal.

Nature Study Activity #2 – Scavenger Hunts

Years ago B and I went to an Easter event and won a deck of Scavenger Hunt cards. We’ve used these on photo walks to give us ideas of things to take pictures of and for something fun to do. This can be easily applied to Nature Study by creating your own cards (or printable).

Creating Scavenger Hunt Cards (or printable)

  1. Make a list of 10+ items to find.
  2. Look online for images.
  3. Add text to images (I prefer Canva – the free version has a lot of functionality)
  4. Print cards.
  5. Laminate for sturdiness (optional).

Don’t want to make your own? These blogs have ready-madeScavenger Hunts:

Follow my Nature Study board on Pinterest for more ideas.

Nature Study Bingo

I don’t know why, but B loves Bingo. But if playing Bingo helps him learn to identify different types of trees, leaves, flowers, butterflies or what have you, I’m in! Just like the Scavenger Hunt Nature Study Cards, Bingo sheets would be easy to make.

Creating Bingo Cards

  1. Make a list of 24+ items to find (there are 24 spots on a Bingo card but you’ll need more to vary the cards).
  2. Look online for images.
  3. Add to Bingo cards (I created a template for public use on Canva search for “Bingo Cards”, add images and change the text on each image to what it is)
  4. Print cards.
  5. Laminate to use with dry erase markers.

These blogs have free bingo printables:

Don’t forget to follow my Nature Study board on Pinterest for more ideas.

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