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Homeschool Nature Book – Birds, Nests, and Eggs

The book Birds, Nests, and Eggs is the perfect beginner’s book for homeschool nature study. It’s also a wonderful take along guide that features many of the common birds that we see in our yards and neighborhoods.

The book Birds, Nests, and Eggs is the perfect beginner’s book for many of the common birds that we see in our yards and neighborhoods.

Homeschool Nature Book – Birds, Nests, and Eggs

Birds, Nests, and Eggs – Take Along Guide

(Note the link above is an Amazon affiliate link to a book that I own and love.)

The illustrations give a wonderful look at something we don’t often see because they are hidden from sight. The nests are shown in such a way that you can see the shape and what materials are used for creating just the right container for the fragile bird eggs. The eggs are also shown in full color. This is a fun way to learn more about birds and their life cycle. In addition, you’ll find some fun bird related activities to try and to weave into your backyard bird study.

This book is one that we have in our nature book library. I know you’ll enjoy it too! Birds, Nests, and Eggs – Take Along Guide

The book Birds, Nests, and Eggs is the perfect beginner’s book for many of the common birds that we see in our yards and neighborhoods.

More Take-Along Nature Guides for Your Homeschool

When I found my first “Take-Along Guide” at a used book store, I was interested so I purchased it.  But it was later when I began really reading it that I became really interested.

I would recommend reading through your Take-Along Guide before taking off on your nature walk. Then you can put it in your bag and bring with you on your walk and use it to identify things as you go. Read more of the Take-Along Nature Guides for Homeschool.

The book Birds, Nests, and Eggs is the perfect beginner’s book for many of the common birds that we see in our yards and neighborhoods.
The book Birds, Nests, and Eggs is the perfect beginner’s book for many of the common birds that we see in our yards and neighborhoods.

Bird Resources to Use in Your Homeschool Nature Study

Examples of Nests and Eggs: This is a page on the Cornell website that shows actual nests and eggs for many common birds. Spend some time with your children clicking the images and viewing them together.

Nestwatch: This citizen science program is something your family could participate in if you have a nest in your yard. Take a look and see if it’s something you can incorporate into your nature study plans.

Learn About Birds Homeschool Nature Study membership.

Bird Nest Study in our Homeschool Nature Study Membership

You can use notebooking pages in Homeschool Nature Study Membership to complete a bird study that focuses on the nest.

You can find even more bird nature study ideas in the Learning About Birds Outdoor Hour Challenge curriculum. This ebook curriculum is available in annual Homeschool Nature Study membership.

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Prairies and Grasslands – Study and Activity

Prairie Wildlife Nature Book Club

Prairie Wildlife Study with Printables

If you live in the prairies of North America or are interested in learning more about this rich and valuable habitat, you’re going to be excited about the featured book for this month’s nature book club link-up. America’s Prairies and Grasslands-A Guide to Plants and Animals by Marianne D. Wallace describes that unique habitat with words and beautiful pictures. I’m eager to share this incredible resource on prairie wildlife that our family has used and loved.

Here’s the book I’m featuring: America’s Prairies and Grasslands.

You can look for it at your public library or it’s available from Amazon (Note that I’m an Amazon affiliate and there are affiliate links in this entry).

rabbitbrush prairie wildflowers

Using America’s Prairies and Grasslands in Your Nature Study

I love the Handbook of Nature Study by Anna Botsford Comstock but she wrote the book featuring plants and animals of her local habitat in upstate New York. Many of us live in very different habitats and to supplement our nature study we draw on other resources that talk about plants and animals we see in our neighborhoods.

Prairies and Grasslands study and printables page 1

America’s Prairies and Grasslands will appeal to many families because it helps us look deeper into things we see every day and maybe don’t appreciate.

Prairies and Grasslands study and printables page 2

This book uses maps to show where different prairies and grasslands are located in the United States. Visual spatial learners will benefit by looking at the maps or even recreating them in their nature journals. When I was homeschooling my boys, I always appreciated the opportunities to draw connections between different academic subjects and using geography alongside your nature study will make it more meaningful.

How to Use This Book for Nature Study

A great way to use this book is to go through each of the six major grasslands one at a time: tallgrass prairie, mixed-grass prairie, shortgrass prairie, Palous prairie, California Valley grassland, and semidesert grassland.

For each of the six grasslands, you can do the following steps.

  1. Read the narrative.
  2. Look at the map.
  3. Look at the two page colored illustration.
  4. Pick a plant or animal to learn more about using information in the back of the book, your own nature library, or online resources.
  5. Wrap up your study with a nature journal page (see below).

Take a week for each grassland or if you live in a particular grassland, why not stretch it to an entire school year by taking a plant or animal each week? Use the index in the back of the book to see just how many topics you find of interest to your family. Check the Handbook of Nature Study website using the tabs at the top to find any Outdoor Hour Challenges for selected topics to use alongside the America’s Prairies and Grasslands book.

Prairies and Grasslands Notebook Page Set

I’ve created this set of six notebooking pages to use with your prairies and grasslands studies.

Member’s Benefit: Members here on the Handbook of Nature Study will have unlimited access in their printable library. (See how to purchase a membership here: Ultimate Naturalist Library.)

 

Prairie Wildlife Study with Printables

Prairie Wildlife Clipart and printables

Member’s Benefit: In addition, members here on the Handbook of Nature Study have access to several notebooking pages in their printables library that will be helpful in a study of prairie wildlife. Learn more about purchasing a Ultimate Naturalist Library membership here: Join Us!

***New! Prairie Wildflowers and Animals Clipart set

***Look for the pages for bison, pronghorn, coyotes, elk, rattlesnakes, and deer.

Want to study a different habitat?

This book is one in a series of books that teach about the various habitats of the world. I own several of them and use them as references in my nature writing. Here are the other habitats you can read about: deserts, forests, mountains, seashores, and wetlands.

Handbook of Nature Study Subscribe Now 2

Make sure to subscribe to my blog to follow along with our weekly nature study activities.

 

Here are the co-hosts, their choices of books, and activities for the month:

Notebooking Pages based on The Prairie That Nature Built from Jenny at Faith and Good Works

Nature Journaling based on Wildflowers of Yellowstone & Grand Teton National Parks: A Guide to Common & Notable Species from Eva at Eva Varga

Online Nature Book Course based on The Legend of the Indian Paintbrush from Dachelle at Hide The Chocolate

Flower Suncatchers for Toddlers and Preschoolers based on Miss Lady Bird’s Wildflowers: How a First Lady Changed America from Erika at The Playful Scholar

Flower Printable Pack based on Prairie Flowers: Learning Activities and Lessons to Inspire Creativity! from Sharla of Minnesota Country Girl

Flower Paintbrushes based on The Legend of the Indian Paintbrush from Cassidy at Freshly Planted

Sunflower Decoupage Vase based on The Sunflower House from Katrina at Rule This Roost

Prairie Wildflower Identification Hike from Thaleia at Something 2 Offer

 

Past Month’s Themes:

Link Up Guidelines

    • Choose an engaging nature book, do a craft or activity, and add your post to our monthly link up.
    • The link up party goes live at 9:00 a.m. EST on the 20th of each month and stays open until the last day of the month. Hurry to add your links!
    • You can link up to 3 posts. Please do not link up advertising posts, advertise other link up parties, your store, or non-related blog posts. They will be removed.
    • By linking up with us, you agree for us to share your images and give you credit of course if we feature posts.

 

 



New Nature Club Graphic for the Year

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Seashore Observations

Nature Book Club Seashore Observations and Printable

Handbook of Nature Study

Nature Book Club – July

Seashore Observations Using One Small Square

This is the perfect time to plan a trip to the ocean and take a nature walk with your children! As part of the latest edition of the Nature Book Club Link-Up, I’m sharing a terrific book and activity to inspire a closer look at the ocean, the beach, and tide pools!

The theme of the link-up for July is BEACH, SAND, AND SHELLS so after you read my entry, you can follow the links at the bottom of this post to see what my fellow club members are offering as part of this month’s nature study encouragement.

Here is the book I’m featuring: One Small Square – Seashore

You can look for it at your public library or it’s available from Amazon (note that I’m an Amazon affiliate and there are affiliate links in this entry).

july nature book club graphic

One Small Square – Seashore

I love every single book in the One Small Square series (by author Donald Silver). The illustrations alone make them an attractive and interesting series of books for children of all ages. The straightforward suggested observations are easy to follow and give you fantastic ideas of what to look for when you visit a particular habitat.

The seashore edition will not disappoint you with its colorful pictures of clearly labeled creatures and plants you may observe during a typical trip to the ocean.  The activities are simple and use common supplies like a magnifying glass, paper, pencil, hand trowel, etc.

Seashore Observations Notebook Page Activity

Seashore Observations Activity

Use my new Seashore Observations printable activity to inspire some enthusiasm for a beach nature study. You can print the page, fold it in half, and insert it in most nature journals. I would suggest printing it ahead of time and taking it along with a pencil or pen in your beach bag. Use the prompts to encourage observations and the grid as a scavenger hunt activity. Fill in the boxes with sketches and/or words of things of interest your child found on the beach.

Download a copy here: No longer available for free download.

Only available here in this blog entry until 7/31/18.<<<<<< Members have access to this printable in their library>>>>>>>>

Keep it fun!

You can read about some of our beach nature study adventures in these entries:

Also, if you’re a member here on the Handbook of Nature Study, you’ll want to check out these archived newsletters for additional beach nature study ideas.

  • June 2012 Ocean Beach
  • June 2017 Beach and Fish

Ultimate Naturalist Library September 2017 @handbookofnaturestudy

Here’s more information on becoming a member: Join Us!

 

nature book club main graphic

Note: This post is part of a monthly series of posts I’m writing as part of a fantastic group of nature loving women who I’m linking up with on the 20th of each month. There’s a topic of the month and we’ll all share a book and activity that goes along with that theme.  You can use the links at the bottom of this post to see all of our books/activities. Use the linky tool below to share your own nature walk related links this month too.

Check out these other links for more nature walk ideas from Nature Book Club Co-Hosts!

 

Past Month’s Themes:

Link Up Guidelines

    • Choose an engaging nature book, do a craft or activity, and add your post to our monthly link up.
    • The link up party goes live at 9:00 a.m. EST on the 20th of each month and stays open until the last day of the month. Hurry to add your links!
    • You can link up to 3 posts. Please do not link up advertising posts, advertise other link up parties, your store, or non-related blog posts. They will be removed.
    • By linking up with us, you agree for us to share your images and give you credit of course if we feature posts.


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Discover Nature at Sundown

Nature Walk at Sundown @handbookofnaturestudy

Handbook of Nature Study

Nature Book Club – June

Nature Hike – At Sundown!

Welcome to the latest edition of the Nature Book Club link-up! This month the theme is NATURE HIKE and I’m going to share my favorite summer time nature hike idea that happens at sundown! It’s a truly magical time of the day to be out on the trail or just in your own backyard watching, listening, and experiencing this special time of day. You’ll find my nature book selection below, Discover Nature at Sundown, along with a fantastic idea for taking a nature walk in the evenings.

Nature Book Club Nature Hike

Take a Nature Hike at Sundown

Discover Nature at Sundown by Elizabeth P. Lawlor is a book that our family has used for many years. When my children were younger, we would pull it off the shelf every summer to use as a reference and as a source of nature study ideas. I even wrote an entire ebook that features Discover Nature at Sundown and its topics, which you can find referenced below (Summer Series of Outdoor Hour Challenges).

Discover Nature at Sundown

(Note there are affiliate links in this post)

Here are some of the main topics in this book: owls, frogs, moths, fireflies, bats, opossums, raccoons, and skunks. There’s a little something for everyone’s taste! Dissect an owl pellet, try to entice moths to your nature hike, chase a firefly, listen for crickets, or hunt for traces of raccoons and opossums.  My strategy was always to complete an entire in-depth study from this book each summer. Over time, your family will have covered a lot of interesting topics in a relaxed and enjoyable way.

Discover nature at sundown

For those of you that keep nature journals, you’ll be happy to note that the illustrations and charts are all very well done and our family would often copy them into our nature journals for future reference. The black and white line drawings are simple enough to inspire even the most reluctant nature journaler.

Discover nature at sundown

The ideas in this book will help you use your senses during your nature study to learn more about each of the topics. These skills are so useful in all scientific study but especially so for nature study. Plus, using all your senses is lots of fun! The book will help you with ideas for honing these skills and explain how we can enhance our natural senses.

5 senses sunset walk

5 Senses at Sunset Nature Walk – A Fun Way to Work on Using Our Senses

Summer evenings are a cooler time of day for getting outside with your children. The after dinner hours are still light enough that taking a nature walk is a possibility. We often would go on a dinner picnic at a lake and then take a long walk in the evening air. There would still be plenty of things to observe, including a delightful sunset, the chirping of crickets, the song of the robin, the breeze in the treetops, and the buzz of mosquitoes.

Your nature walk doesn’t need to be a long one and you can adjust the time of day and length to fit your particular family. For a first outing, plan on 15-20 minutes and then see how it goes. If you can encourage your children to walk silently, even for just a minute, they are going to get more out of the experience. As your children are able, try to spend longer periods of silence as you listen for any signs of life during your outdoor time.

 

The notebook page is also available in the Ultimate and Journey level memberships here on the Handbook of Nature Study. Log into your account and look for it in the Misc. Topics section.

Printables for Members Button

You can click the link above to see all of the printables available in the Ultimate and Journey level memberships.

Links You May Find Helpful:

Outdoor Hour Challenge Summer Using Your Senses

You can click over to see if the Summer Nature Study – Using Your Senses Ebook is something your family would benefit from using this summer or in the future. It includes specific nature study ideas and links for all of the topics in the Discover Nature at Sundown ebook and will help you work on using your senses on every nature walk.

Ultimate Naturalist Library September 2017 @handbookofnaturestudy

You can find this ebook in the Ultimate Naturalist Library membership along with 20 other nature study ebooks that feature nature study ideas for all seasons of the year. You can click the button above to read more about the benefits of a membership here on the Handbook of Nature Study.

Handbook of Nature Study Subscribe Now 2

Make sure to subscribe to my blog to receive weekly nature study ideas right in your email inbox.

 

 

nature book club main graphic

Note: This post is part of a monthly series of posts I’m writing as part of a fantastic group of nature loving women who I’m linking up with on the 20th of each month. There’s a topic of the month and we’ll all share a book and activity that goes along with that theme.  You can use the links at the bottom of this post to see all of our books/activities. Use the linky tool below to share your own nature walk related links this month too.

Check out these other links for more nature walk ideas from Nature Book Club Co-Hosts!

 

 

Past Month’s Themes:

Nature Book Club Nature Hike

Link Up Guidelines

    • Choose an engaging nature book, do a craft or activity, and add your post to our monthly link up.
    • The link up party goes live at 9:00 a.m. EST on the 20th of each month and stays open until the last day of the month. Hurry to add your links!
    • You can link up to 3 posts. Please do not link up advertising posts, advertise other link up parties, your store, or non-related blog posts. They will be removed.
    • By linking up with us, you agree for us to share your images and give you credit of course if we feature posts.

 


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Nature Book Club – My Favorite Tree

 

 

My Favorite Tree Nature Club Printables

April Nature Book Club

My Favorite Tree

Trees Buds and Branches

I’m excited to participate again this month with the Nature Book Club group! I love trees and this month’s book selection is one that we have used in our family over the years. I still like to page through it and learn little tidbits about each of the trees.

This is an opportunity for you to join in with the club your own tree book entries by using the linky tool below to share your own tree related links this month too!

 

My Favorite Tree-Terrific Trees of North America by Diane Iverson is one of my all time favorite tree picture books for children of all ages. (Note this book is only available used on Amazon and this is my affiliate link) This book features trees native to Canada, Mexico, and the United States (including Hawaii). This is not a comprehensive field guide sort of book but it introduces a variety of trees from around North America along with interesting facts and much more.

FullSizeRender

¨ Tree Traits-excellent concise information on habitat, height, bark, leaves, flowers and seeds.

¨ Wild Companions-features a bird, mammal, or insect that makes use of the tree

¨ It’s a Fact-beyond the basic facts, this section shares fascinating historical and practical facts

¨ Hall of Fame-Location of the tallest or biggest specimen, state tree information and other “champion” information.

This is a book that would be a terrific addition to your nature study library if you live in North America.

My Favorite Tree Printables button

Download your copy here:  My Favorite Tree Printable Unit and Notebook Page

I have created a printable chart that coordinates the trees in the My Favorite Tree book with the Handbook of Nature Study lessons and then the corresponding Outdoor Hour Challenge. You can use this information to help you provide a more thorough tree study for many of the trees covered in the My Favorite Tree book.

There is also a custom designed notebooking page to use with each tree you learn about from the My Favorite Tree book. You can print this out as many times as you need to create a lovely record of your tree studies.

Additional Tree Study Idea

Year+Long+Tree+Study+2008+@handbookofnaturestudy.jpg

You may wish to start a year-long tree study, viewing a tree in all four seasons. Click over and read this blog entry for some simple ideas to get you started: For the Love of Trees.

Handbook of Nature Study Subscribe Now 2

Make sure to subscribe to my blog to follow along with all of the nature study ideas offered every week.

 

 

Link Up Guidelines

          • Choose an engaging nature book, do a craft or activity, and add your post to our monthly link up.
          • The link up party goes live at 9:00 a.m. EST on the 20th of each month and stays open until the last day of the month. Hurry to add your links!
          • You can link up to 3 posts. Please do not link up advertising posts, advertise other link up parties, your store, or non-related blog posts. They will be removed.
          • By linking up with us, you agree for us to share your images and give you credit of course if we feature posts.

         

              • See all the great posts from The Nature Book Club’s co-hosts in March:


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Winter Mammal Study – Tracks, Scat, and Signs

Tracks Scats and Signs Nature Book Club

It’s another month of nature book fun here on the Handbook of Nature Study. Last month we were learning about birds using the fantastic resource, Backyard Birds. This month I’m again joining with the same group of bloggers for another fun nature topic: small mammals!  We’ll all share a book and activities that go along with that theme.  You can use the links at the bottom of this post to see all of our books/activities.

 

Nature Book Club Mammals Feb 2018

Tracks, Scats, and Signs: So many people have this book on their shelf but have never actually used it for their nature study.  (It’s part of the Fun With Nature Take Along Guide as well!) I’m hoping to help you use the fantastic information in this book to get outside and look for some signs of animals in your yard and neighborhood.  Look for the book at your local library!

(Note there are affiliate links in this post)

Simple Idea for Using Tracks, Scats and Signs for Your Nature Study

  • Read the book Tracks, Scats and Signs with your family before you go on a nature walk. Keep it light and enjoy the words and illustrations, noting any animals you may have in your local area. Each topic in this book shows an illustration of the tracks and the scat that each animal makes so you know what to look for during your outdoor time.  You will need to explain the word “scat” to younger children; expect giggles as they realize it’s just a fancy word for animal poop. Along with each selection, there’s a short description of where to look for each animal and a little bit about their behavior.

 

tracks in the snow

 

  • Take a nature walk looking for tracks, scat, and signs. We were always excited when we found animal tracks in the snow, mud, or ice!  Take photos of any animal tracks you find as you explore.  You may wish to bring along a ruler to measure the size of the animal tracks you find for future reference.  Take a few minutes to use your imagination about who made the tracks and what they were doing.
  • When you get back home, make a nature journal entry recording any observations you have from your nature walk. I have used the illustrations in the Tracks, Scats, and Signs book to help me draw the tracks and scat into my own nature journal.

elk scat

I’ve written a few Outdoor Hour Challenges that you could use along with the Tracks, Scats and Signs book.

  • Winter Mammal Tracks: Use the idea during the winter months to learn more about the animal tracks you observe during your outdoor time.
  • Signs of Mammals: We’ve found in our family that many times we don’t actually see small mammals but we observe signs of them during our outdoor time. This challenge helps you do some research about signs you find and then make a nature journal entry.

Tracks Mammal Activity

Look for these additional books at your library:  Track Finder by Dorcas Miller and   Whose Tracks are These? by Jim Nail.

Winter Nature Study ebook @handbookofnaturestudy

I’m hoping you will consider using my Winter Nature Study ebook with your family in the future. There are many more winter nature study ideas for you to include with your outdoor time each week during the cold winter months.

NOTE: There are ebooks for each season here on the Handbook of Nature Study. You can find a complete list of the ebooks in my library here: Join Us! Right now I’m offering a $5 discount for every level of membership. Use the discount code OHC10 at checkout.

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Make sure to subscribe to my blog to follow along with those mammal-related nature study activities.

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Backyard Birds – Learning about Black and White Birds

 Nature Book Club Backyard Birds Jan 2018

 

This post is the first in a monthly series of posts I will be writing as part of a fantastic group of women who I’m linking up with on the 20th of each month. There is a topic of the month and we will all share a book and activity that goes along with that theme.  You can use the links at the bottom of this post to see all of our books/activities. Use the linky tool below to share your own bird related links this month too!

Nature Book Club January Birds

Backyard Birds!

One of my great joys in life has been observing my backyard birds. When we moved from California to Oregon, one of the first things I requested of my husband was to put up all our birdfeeders. I could hardly wait to see who would visit in this new habitat!

We started watching our own backyard birds many years ago when my children were all still homeschooling. The boys created birdfeeders to put up right outside the window so we could look for birds while we were working on our school activities. At first we didn’t know very many of the bird’s names, but using a field guide over several years we were able to correctly identify about a dozen birds. The habit of bird watching has continued even into their adult years and I like to think that starting them young was a motivating factor for their love of birds.

A Valuable Addition to Your Nature Library

(Note there are affiliate links in this post)

One of the books we had on our windowsill was the Peterson Field Guides for Young Naturalists – Backyard Birds (written by Jonathan P. Latimer ISBN 9780395922767). It was simple to page through and use as a way to familiarize ourselves with many of the most frequently seen birds in North America. The book is organized by color of bird and is beautifully illustrated. It’s a wonderful supplement to any bird nature study activity or even as an additional resource for a study of flying creatures. It has always had a special spot in our nature book library.

It’s a valuable first bird guide for your children and it will lead you right into a more thorough field guide as your skills improve and you become more engrossed in identifying every bird that visits your feeder.

Backyard Bird Activity

 

Black and White Birds Nature study @handbookofnature

Black and White Birds Nature Study Using the Backyard Birds Book

Would you like to see an idea for using this book with your own backyard birds?

Black and White Birds and Bird Feet: – Click Here!

Use this activity (see step #3 in the challenge for the reference to the Backyard Birds book) to learn more about the chickadee, nuthatch, and woodpecker. I have included lots of links and ideas for you to use with your family.

 

Learning About Birds 3D cover

I have written a whole series of bird related nature study challenges that go along with the Backyard Birds book. You will find the details here: Learning About Birds with the Outdoor Hour Challenge.

Make sure to scroll down on the page and find the link to the sample for this ebook.

You can find this book in both the Ultimate and Journey level memberships on the Handbook of Nature Study.

Handbook of Nature Study Subscribe Now 2

Please note we will be working through all of the Outdoor Hour Challenges in the Learning About Birds ebook starting on March 2, 2018. Make sure to subscribe to my blog to follow along with those bird-related nature study activities.

Link Up Guidelines

      • Choose an engaging nature book, do a craft or activity, and add your post to our monthly link up.
      • The link up party goes live at 9:00 a.m. EST on the 20th of each month and stays open until the last day of the month. Hurry to add your links!
      • You can link up to 3 posts. Please do not link up advertising posts, advertise other link up parties, your store, or non-related blog posts. They will be removed.
      • By linking up with us, you agree for us to share your images and give you credit of course if we feature posts.
The Nature Book ClubThis post is the first in a monthly series of posts I will be writing as part of a fantastic group of women who I’m linking up with on the 20th of each month. There is a topic of the month and we will all share a book and activity that goes along with that theme.  You can use the link below to see all of our posts and you’ll be able to add your links as well.


The Nature Book Club is brought to you by the nature loving bloggers and your cohosts! Be sure to follow them.

Here are the bloggers, their choices of books, and activities for the month.

The Nature Book Club 2018 Topics