A simple homeschool plant life nature study learning the parts of a flower. Flowers are a wonderful first nature study topic for many children, especially those flowers they find and ask about on your creative nature walks or even in your own backyard. Keep it simple and fun!
“All the names should be taught gradually by constant unemphasized use on the part of the teacher; and if the child does not learn the names naturally then do not make him do it unnaturally.”
Handbook of Nature Study, page 456
Plant Life Nature Study – Learning the Parts of a Flower
This plant life nature study is going to be helpful to all families as they strive to learn the technical names for flower parts. Make sure to read the pages in the Handbook of Nature Study and look up the link in the challenge with a printable with the flower parts labeled. Don’t make this too much of a drill or memorization assignment. As the need arises, use the proper names for the flower parts as you go through your outdoor time and find garden flowers or wildflowers to observe.
More Flower Nature Study Activities
You will also enjoy this parts of a flower printable from our friends at The Homeschool Scientist.
Our sister site, You ARE an ARTiST, has a parts of a daffodil art lesson included in the I Drew It Then I Knew It Science series with Nana.
Homeschool Nature Study Lesson Plans
If you are a member here at Homeschool Nature Study, you will find this plant life nature study flower challenge in the Garden Flower and Plant Curriculum ebook in your membership library. In the ebook you will find a custom notebook page designed for use with this particular challenge.
I’ve spent a lot of time over the past few months working on a new ebook for all of us to use in creating a backyard habitat designed to attract birds, bees, and butterflies. I’ve heard from so many of my readers that they think their backyard space is boring or nothing out of the ordinary. So this week, I’m going to challenge you all to get outside and prove yourselves wrong!
Every space has something to observe, and the list below will help you start thinking differently about whatever your outdoor space is currently looking like at the beginning of spring. As part of the process in creating a backyard habitat, the first step is to make an assessment of what you already have and then decide how you can improve it. Challenge your children to check off as many things as they can from the list below.
Flowers (garden or in a pot): petals, pollen, roots, leaves, stem, fragrance, shapes, colors, seeds
We need to train our eyes and hearts to be open to the opportunities that arise in our everyday travels.
I’m anticipating the new backyard habitat ebook to be in the Ultimate Naturalist Library for members by the end of April 2021. Exciting times coming for you and your family as you start the process of creating a backyard habitat to use for nature study and so much more!
Members have access to the Garden Flowers and Crops ebook in their library. This is also a fantastic resource for learning about gardening along with your children.
We’ll be using the Herb Nature Study ebook later this summer for our weekly Outdoor Hour Challenges. If you have access now, you can get a jump start by reading through the book and planning a few herbs to grow for your nature study time.
In this violets nature study, learn how to identify violets plus enjoy suggestions for your outdoor homeschool nature study. Follow up activities include nature journaling pages for labeling flower parts and resources for how to grow violets.
Outdoor Hour ChallengeViolets Nature Study
I love violets! In the summer, we have thousands of them that come up all over the yard. They are in the flower beds, in the lawn, and even between the pavers of our walkway! I love their happy colors and I’m anxious to see them again once the season changes.
Most of our violets are transplants from a friend that have gone wild and reseeded themselves. But, we do have one native violet that grows as a wildflower along the edges of our property. It is the goosefoot violet and it’s yellow.
I need to be careful when I’m weeding along the fence because I could easily weed them right out of the flower bed. Learning their leaf shape, a distinctive “goose print” shape, has helped me to let them be when I’m cleaning out the weeds. Plus, it helps me remember its name! The goosefoot violet is one of our spring ephemerals and signals us that spring is on its way, making it a very welcome flower when we see it starting to bloom.
I think Anna Botsford Comstock had a love for violets as well. When you read the violets nature study lesson in the Handbook of Nature Study you can hear her appreciation for their form and beauty. She does mention the fact that not all violets are fragrant. This was a surprise to me because our violets in California all had that distinctive violet perfume fragrance. The goosefoot violet has no fragrance at all. Turns out, Anna was helpful in giving us some valuable information in order to correctly identify the wild violets.
Homeschool Nature Study Members: View the original challenge in Homeschool Nature Study membership in the Winter Course.
Make sure to check your local field guide to see which violets are native and then be on the lookout for some to observe in your nature study. As suggested in the challenge, look for “johnny jump ups” in your garden nursery as a substitute for wild violets.
Learn About Wildflowers in Homeschool Nature Study Membership
Annual members can download and use any of the wildflower challenges from the three sets of Wildflower curriculum available in the Member’s Library.
You will find hundreds of homeschool nature studies plus all the Outdoor Hour Challenges in our Homeschool Nature Study membership. There are 25+ continuing courses with matching Outdoor Hour curriculum that will bring the Handbook of Nature Study to life in your homeschool! In addition, there is an interactive monthly calendar with daily nature study prompt – all at your fingertips!
This is the season for planning your garden whether it’s a flower garden or a vegetable garden. Anticipating the colorful flowers, the delicious tasting fruits, and the many hours of happily tending the garden is more than half the fun in my opinion. Paging through seed catalogs or scrolling your favorite gardening sites online can fill your cold winter days with pleasant thoughts of things to come.
I’ve already started my garden planning for the year and put in my seed order to Renee’s Garden Seeds. If you’ve been following my blog for any length of time, you already know that I love this seed company. I always have great results from their products and they are my go to place to purchase seeds for the garden.
Because of our short growing season here in Central Oregon (less than 60 days), our garden is mostly flowers now and not veggies. But, I have decided to try a green bean and broccoli raab crop this year as an experiment. I will keep you posted on our results.
Chocolate Daisy – This is an old favorite that I want to try this year in our new garden box. (It does have the fragrance of chocolate!)
I am eagerly awaiting their arrival! It will be a while before I can actually plant them, but I can dream about the warm summer afternoons in the garden while I wait.
Maybe you would like to start dreaming and planning for your summer flower garden nature studies. I have completely updated my chart of garden flower topics from the Handbook of Nature Study. Each flower has an Outdoor Hour Challenge associated with it on the website and an ebook with notebook pages to use for your study. Use the links in the chart to decide on which flowers you will study this summer!
Ultimate Naturalist Library members have access to all the ebooks required. If you’d like to purchase an annual membership, click the link above and then use the discount code NATURE5 to receive $5 off your membership.
All memberships are valid for one year after your purchase. The library of ebooks, the newsletters, and all the printables will be only a few clicks away.
For those of you following the Ambleside Online nature schedule, the spring topic is garden flowers and weeds. Please feel free to combine your nature study with the Outdoor Hour Challenges found in the archives.
I received my Renee’s Garden order not too long ago and I’m getting ready to put those seeds in the ground…or in pots to transfer once the weather warms.
We’ve been in our current location for 3 years and I’m just now starting to grasp how to create a wildlife friendly habitat and garden in a Zone 2/3 climate. Originally I did the research on my Central Oregon gardening zone and the charts showed it was 5A. No way can I go by that designation! The old-timers here with successful gardens say that a more accurate designation is probably a Zone 3 but sometimes a Zone 2. This is because we have many summer nights that dip down to near or below freezing. I now make sure any plants I grow will have a fighting chance, which means looking at the plant tag to make sure it can survive at -20 or -40 degrees F.
It’s important to purchase plants, trees, and seeds that will thrive in your climate zone or you’ll be wasting your time (and money). I’m sharing all of that to help you see that I live where I won’t be able to grow a vegetable garden without the help of a greenhouse. So, I am focusing more on growing a colorful flower garden that will grow and bloom within our very short growing season.
This year I chose my Renee’s Garden seeds with a new purpose. My husband and I are rototilling about 1,200 square feet of grass area to create large garden box plots for flowers that will be attractive to bees, butterflies, and birds.
Here are the Renee’s Garden seeds we chose:
Early Blooming Beekeeper’s Mix: We grew these in our garden box last year and although it took awhile to get the seeds going, we had a beautiful display of this colorful mix of flowers.
Seeds for a Hummingbird Garden: I’m excited to give this mix a try even though I’m not sure about the results. I will share the results later this summer.
Chocolate Cherry Sunflowers: We successfully grew these gorgeous burgundy colored sunflowers last year, so they are already tucked into some pots in an attempt to get some growth before they need to go in the ground. We have them on a table that we bring into the garage at night and then drag out into the sunshine every day.
Van Gogh Sunflowers: These are my absolute favorite sunflowers and we had them in the garden last year (and many summers in the past when we lived back in California).
Swallowtail Fennel: We had this fennel in our garden last year and its beautiful golden color was so attractive. I want to increase the number of plants this year.
Forget-Me-Nots Azure Bluebirds: We loved these little blue beauties in our shady flower bed last summer and I’m going to expand the area again this year.
Please note that I receive some of the seeds as a promotional thank you from Renee’s Garden. I have purchased and used her seeds for many years now and I’m never disappointed.
Gardening is such a therapeutic activity during this pandemic. As our planting deadline approaches, we are working furiously to get the beds ready to give all these amazing plants a good shot at growing and thriving in our crazy short growing season.
Are you dreaming of a flower garden this year? I highly recommend clicking over to Renee’s Garden to look for your seeds. It’s not too late to order and get them going in your yard. See if your children want to pick a few seeds for their own little flower garden or even just a container garden on your porch, deck, or balcony. The magical experience of planting a seed and seeing it spring to life is something powerful to children.
Click over to my garden resources and see if you find some inspiration to get you going.
Resources in the Archives for a Garden Nature Study Plan
I don’t know about you, but I’m anxious to get my garden going this year. With so much time spent indoors sheltering in place, I’m ready to be out in the garden now that the sun is out and the temperatures are warming up.
I always looked for opportunities to involve my children in the garden and to spark some questions in relation to the activities we were doing together. Learning about seeds and plants isn’t the only thing you can include in your gardening time!
Look for birds that may come to visit, insects hiding in the garden, and perhaps even reptiles or amphibians that may be sheltering there.
If you need some ideas to get started or some printable notebook pages to fill in after your garden time, don’t forget about the resources in the Ultimate Naturalist Library.
Newsletters with Garden Themes:
July 2011 – Sunflower study and notebook page.
September 2011 – Autumn weed study grid. Weed notebook page.
August 2012 – August Garden study grid. Know Your Own Backyard – August Garden notebook page.
May 2013 – Garden Flowers study grid. Flower notebook page. Crop Plants grid study.
June 2013 – Wildflower Study notebook page. Dandelion and aster study ideas. Wildflower and Weed study grid.
October 2013 – Pumpkin Farm notebook page.
May 2014 – Gardening with children ideas. Seasonal Garden Notes notebook page. Garden flowers notebook page and grid study.
September 2014 – Fall flower study ideas. How to dissect a flower.
March 2015 – Poppy coloring page.
June 2015 – Nature study ideas for herbs. Herb Study notebook page. Herb coloring page. Salvia coloring page.
July 2015 – Geranium notebook page.
April 2016 – Garden seeds projects. Garden Seed notebook page. Garden nature study ideas.
May 2016 – Wildflower Study notebook page. Wildflower and Weed study grid.
April 2017 – Trillium notebook page. Wildflower nature study ideas.
May 2017 – 3 Seed Container project. Gardening with kids ideas.
Berry and Shrub Notebook Page Set
Farmers Market Scavenger Hunt Printable
Flowers Up Close Printable Grid and Journal
Flower Dissection Notebook Page from Handbook of Nature Study
Garden Notebook Page Set 1: morning glories, marigolds, lilacs, caterpillars, and cabbage whites.
Garden Notebook Page Set 2: cucumbers, kale, cherries, gourds, squash
If you would like access to all of the resources listed above, as well the abundance of downloadable products available, you can purchase an Ultimate Naturalist Library membership here on the Handbook of Nature Study.
Use the discount code INITTOGETHER to get $10 off the Ultimate Naturalist Library membership.
Your membership will be valid for one year from the date of purchase and will give you access to every single resource available now and those that will be added to the Library during your membership year!
It’s that time of year again! Wildflower season is upon us and it may just be the topic that your children will really enjoy as you take your summer nature walks. Who can help but notice the colors of summer when they start to bloom? Every habitat has something to offer before the season passes.
Use the ideas in the link below to take a closer look at a few of your wildflowers of summer. After you make some observations, you can create a nature journal page for each flower. Keep your study simple and fun this summer and you’ll be sure to make some fond wildflower memories for your children.
“All this flower has to do is to hold its banner aloft as a sign to the world, especially the insect world, that here is to be found pollen in plenty, and nectar for the probing.”
Handbook of Nature Study, page 576
Growing and then studying your own sunflowers is a great way to learn the growing cycle of a garden flower…from planting seed to harvesting seeds.
Last week, the challenge was to plant some sunflowers. This week our challenge is to make some observations once your sunflowers are blooming. If you have access to sunflowers now, either in your own garden or from a farmers market, take the opportunity to use the lesson’s suggestions to go deeper into a composite flower study.
Read the Handbook of Nature Study pages on sunflowers (pages 574-578). I can’t think of a better way to study sunflowers than to follow Anna Comstock’s lesson in this section of her book. Read the narrative and then go over the observation suggestions.
Don’t miss seeing our images and nature journal pages!
If you have access to the Garden ebook, make sure to pull out the sunflower art activity using a painting by Van Gogh.
With this challenge, we’ll be finishing our official work in the Garden Flower and Plants ebook. If you’ve been working in this book along with us for the past eight weeks, you’ll want to make sure to check if there are any nature journal pages you need to add to or finish up. See page 37 in the ebook for a list of wrap-up activities. Of course, you can continue working on your garden flower challenges and notebook pages as long as you have an interest.
If you want to join us for the summer series of nature study challenges, we’re going to be starting with the Summer Nature Study Continues ebook on May 31, 2019. If you have an Ultimate or Journey level Membership here on the Handbook of Nature Study, you have access to this ebook and the detailed plan for the summer in your account.
“The sunflower is not a single flower, but is a large number of flowers living together; and each little flower, or floret, as it is called, has its own work to do.”
Handbook of Nature Study, page 576
Growing sunflowers is one of the most satisfying long term nature study projects your family can do together. After examining the seeds and then sowing them in the dirt, you’ll be anxious for them to sprout and bloom! Put your children in charge of keeping them watered and then when they bloom they’ll have seen how from a single seed you get a beautiful garden flower.
Make sure to click the link below to the original challenge to find the pages in the Handbook of Nature Study to read with your children. Learn all about the sunflower and other composite flowers in this nature study lesson.
Don’t miss seeing our images and nature journal pages!
We’re winding down our work in the Garden Flower and Plants ebook. If you’ve been working in this book along with us for the past eight weeks, you’ll want to check if there are any nature journal pages you need to add to or finish up. We’ll be moving on in two week to the next ebook on our yearly plan.
If you want to join us for the summer series of nature study challenges, we’re going to be starting with the Nature Study Continues – Summer Sizzle ebook on May 31, 2019.
If you have an Ultimate Membership here on the Handbook of Nature Study, you have access to this ebook and the detailed plan for the summer in your account.
“Why do we call a plant a weed? Is a weed a weed wherever it grows? How did this weed plant itself where I find it growing? Of what advantage is this weed?”
Handbook of Nature Study, page 513
When Anna Botsford Comstock uses the term “weed”, she many times means what we would commonly call a “wildflower”. If you look in the Table of Contents in the Handbook of Nature Study, you will see a long list of “weeds” that are subjects of complete lessons in this nature study volume.
From my personal experience, I have this conversation every spring with my husband over whether a dandelion is a weed or a wildflower. He has given me the gift of dandelions in our yard, even though he really wants to weed them out. I love their happy color and have observed many an insect benefiting from our leaving a few dandelions at the edges of our yard. (Read about my “wild side” here: Wild Side #1
and Wild Side #2)
This week click over to read the original challenge from the Garden ebook and then pick a weed to observe, looking carefully for its seeds. This activity can be done periodically as the seeds develop during the summer season. Make it a weed and seed hunt!
We’re continuing to work through the Garden Flower and Plants ebook over the next few weeks. If you own this ebook or have access to it in your Ultimate Naturalist Library, you’ll want to get it out and read the first few pages that outline how the ten week series of garden challenges work together and can be done in any order that makes sense to your family. The ebook has planning pages as you choose, observe, and then learn more about each garden flower you study.