Nature Study Archives

Seeing the Fruits of Our Labors

Isn’t it rewarding when you see your children taking on something that you have tried to make a part of their education but maybe never felt you did quite right? I had one of those rewarding moments a few weeks ago when we were in route to our camp site at Knoll Lake.¬† We had stopped along the Mogollon Rim to enjoy the beautiful and sweeping views. Zoe, my niece, Serenity and Audrey started collecting little bouquets of wild flowers. And then it happened. A great moment for me as a teacher. ūüôā My girl said, “The variety of flowers is so amazing,” and in her voice were the sounds of awe and amazement. What? Even though I have been unfaithful so many times to…

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I had so many¬†wonderful comments last post about our bird feeder. I loved the interaction.¬† The general consensus about our “mystery bird” seems to be that it most definitely is a grosbeak because of its beak.¬† That was people’s first clue on what family it was from.¬†¬†Then our¬†“twitchers” determined that it was a black-headed grosbeak.¬† Now to be honest, when I look in my Birds of Arizona book, the bird doesn’t look¬†quite like the one we have, but when I googled it, the black headed grosbeak images are the very same ones as my bird. Thanks so much everyone.¬†It is so exciting to learn the names of¬†the birds here in our backyard!¬† If you want to be inspired, read the comments left on that post.¬†…

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Cultivating Enjoyment of Nature

A few weeks ago I¬†purchased some bird seed for song birds at Sam’s.¬† I filled up my birdfeeder that had not been used in years and it has been so exciting to watch the many different birds come in to it. “We are all meant to be naturalists, each in his own degree, and it is inexcusable to live in a world so full of the marvels of plant and animal life and to care for none of these things.”¬† Charlotte Mason I have never purchased birdseed for songbirds before because I thought we didn’t really have those birds around.¬† I knew we had blue jays but not much else…. or so I thought.   House Finch (Carpodacus¬†mexicanus) These come in small flocks to our…

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B is for Bush

Scrub OakCyphomardra Betacea Scrub Oak, as it is commonly called, is a very resilient and tough bush. It is to be found all over our valley. It produces acorns which are not quite the same size as a large oak tree would produce. They have acorns that are bitter and have a certain amount of toxicity. So be safe when you eat acorns. Remember, “Safety first.” Picture & Entry written by Zachary (16 year old) *For the A B See Photo Meme, I’m approaching it this way: my children will use this for their nature study. Each one has their own letter from the alphabet (starting at A) and they are to find something in nature that corresponds with that letter. They take a photo…

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A is for Alligator Bark Juniper

For the A B See Photo Meme, I’m approaching it this way: my children will use this for their nature study. Each one has their own letter from the alphabet (starting at A) and they are to find something in nature that corresponds with that letter. They take a photo of it and place it in their Nature Study journal, as well as writing a few facts about it. This week’s photo was taken by Wesley, my 13 year old son. Alligator Bark Juniper Juniperus Deppeana Steud The alligator bark juniper, called so because its bark resembles alligator skin. It is only found in Arizona, New Mexico and Texas and can grow to 55′ tall. To see other ABSee photos go here. You also can…

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