Skip to main content

Posts

40 Nature Study Ideas

Spending time in nature has a plethora of proven health benefits. Nature is soothing to the soul. It's also a great way to incorporate more science into your homeschool day. Time spent outdoors, surrounded by nature, encourages children to learn about and care for the natural world, and it's fun too!






Here are some simple nature study ideas to try:


-Catch a caterpillar and observe the process of metamorphosis.

-Build a compost bin and learn about soil.

-Go bird watching.

-Learn about avian eggs.





-Collect fall leaves and compare their different shapes, sizes, and colors. 

-Collect some pond water and look at it under a microscope.

-Dissect an insect.

-Photograph spider webs.

-Make nature art.






-Collect pine cones and compare the different types that you find.

-Start an ant or earthworm farm.

-Photograph spring wildflowers.

-Build a shelter out of natural items that could protect you from the elements.

-Build a backyard weather station.






-Plant a garden.

-Learn about local edible and medicinal plan…
Recent posts

Birth Story: Barefoot Baby #3

My 3rd little girl made her way Earth side last week, right at 40 weeks. While it was another very healthy and uneventful pregnancy, I was far more uncomfortable in the final few weeks than I was with my first two. I'm a firm believer in waiting for babies to come when they're ready, but waiting this time was tough. My hips and my lower stomach muscles were in constant pain.  I'm glad I held out though, and didn't take my midwife's offer to sweep my membranes in an attempt to jump start things, the week before. Natural deliveries are an intensely beautiful experience, and I am so thankful I got to have another one. Here is our story:

I woke up Thursday morning, the day before my estimated due date, to very regular but fairly mild contractions. I spent about a half hour timing them on my phone. They were already coming every 5-7 minutes, but didn't feel very strong yet, so I knew we likely had plenty of time. Then I tried to distract myself by going about our nor…

The Phases Of The Moon: Activities and Resources

If you pay attention to the moon you've probably noticed that it doesn't look the same from night to night. The moon goes through a monthly cycle, starting with a new moon, and appearing to slowly grow in size to a full moon, and then shrink back down to a new moon. The moon doesn't actually grow and shrink though, and the moon doesn't actually emit light either. The moon reflects the sun's light and appears to grow and shrink based on what part of the moon is facing the Earth at a given point in time. Here are some fun activities and resources for learning more about the phases of the moon and how it all works:






Resources For Learning About The Phases Of The Moon:

Videos

YouTube has lots of great videos for kids about the phases of the moon. Here are a couple of our favorites:

-Why Does The Moon Change from SciShow Kids

-Phases Of The Moon: Astronomy And Space For Kids from FreeSchool


Websites

Here are a few websites with good information about the moon's phases for k…

Homeschooling On The Go

We all have days that are busy and full of errands and appointments, but that doesn't have to get in the way of your kid's lessons. Learning can happen anywhere, even on days when there are lots of errands to run or appointments to get to. In this post I share lots of ways our family takes our learning on the go.







Math:

Grocery Store Math- The grocery store is a great place to practice math skills. Teach your kids to weigh produce and have them help you calculate the price of various produce items. Have them read and compare prices. Ask which brand is cheapest, which is most expensive. 

Mileage Calculations- Teach your kids to read your vehicle's odometer and to understand prices at the gas station. Record your starting and ending odometer reading for the day and have your kids calculate how many miles you drove and how much you spent on gasoline for the day's errands.

Counting Cars- For preschool aged kids, assign a color and have them count how many cars of that color the…

Heart Fish Valentine's Day Craft

Valentine's Day is one of our favorite holidays. There's tons of great crafts to do and we always do some sort of fun baking project too. My daughter's favorite Valentine's Day craft every year is making construction paper heart animals.  We've made a lot of different heart animals over the years, but I think these heart fish are by far my favorite, and they're pretty simple to make.






Heart Fish Valentine's Day Craft:

For this craft you will need:

-2 pieces of different colored construction paper

-A pen

-Scissors

-A glue stick or school glue

-Markers or glitter pens

-Craft eyes (optional)

Start by folding one piece of paper in half and cutting two medium sized hearts out of it.





Trace one of the hearts onto the other piece of construction paper and draw a long cone coming off one side, like in the pictures below:





Then cut it out:


Glue one of the medium sized hearts on one side as your fish face and the other medium sized heart on the other side as your fish's tail.  …

The Benefits Of Student Led Learning

Most modern classrooms are teacher and state standard led, meaning that the teacher and the state decide what and how the students learn. One of my favorite things about homeschooling is that we're free to change things up a bit and let our children have more say in what and how they learn. This is often called student led learning and there are many benefits that come along with it.






Higher Student Interest And Cooperation 

When children get to be involved in deciding what they learn about and how they do it, they become much more willing participants. Nobody enjoys being bossed around and told how and what to think, and kids are no exception to this. A lack of control over one's life creates frustration and often leads to children resenting school. 

Children who get to play an active roll in their education are often eager to learn because they are truly interested in the topics they are studying. Everyone retains information better when it's something they'er interested…

5 Reasons To Read Aloud To Your Kids Even After They Become Proficient Readers

My kids love our daily family read aloud time. They have really come to enjoy this nice quiet family activity we do together and I really enjoy it too!  I know most parents read aloud to their kids when they are young, but read aloud time doesn't have to stop after your kids learn to read for themselves. Here are several reasons to continue reading to your kids aloud, even after they become proficient readers themselves.







Quality Time

Reading aloud to you kids is a great family activity and an awesome way to squeeze in a little extra quality time together. Like I mentioned before, it's one of my kid's favorite times of our day. They often beg me to read to them more even after we've already done our daily read together. I love having such calm quiet time with my kids, especially since so much of our days end up being busy and kind of crazy. 


Introduce Them To A Wide Variety Of Literature 

Reading aloud to your kids can be an awesome opportunity to introduce them to literatu…