Home School Life Journal From Preschool to High School

Home School Life Journal ........... Ceramics by Katie Bergenholtz
"Let us strive to make each moment beautiful."
Saint Francis DeSales

Taking a Nature Walk

When we go out for a nature walk, I let them loose be wild and free for awhile before asking them to attend to something.

"Our wise mother, arrived, first sends the children to let off their spirits in a wild scamper, with cry, hallo, and hullaballo, and any extravagance that comes into their young heads."Charlotte Mason, Vol 1, II, Out-Of-Door Life For The Children, p.45

Then they find what interests them on that day. If they don't notice anything after a while, I will point out something, but I do like to go with their own interests as much as possible because then it has real meaning to them.

"The child, though under supervision, should be left much to himself--both that he may go to work in his own way on the ideas that he receives, and also that he may be the more open to natural influences."
(Vol 1, Part V Lessons As Instruments Of Education, p.178)

Today's interest was the dogs down the street from us. They loved stopping and petting them and spent quite awhile at it.

Some might not realize that this too can be nature study, if they are paying close attention to them.

You can ask some simple questions or make small comments to direct their attention to the dog's temperament or physical features, but is not always necessary.
It also fosters a respect and love for other creatures.
"Be sure that your children each day have something to love, something to do and something to think about."
-Charlotte Mason

Some things, like the flower, won't last but most things can be kept for quite awhile.

We also have a dish in which we keep the finds of the day. This encourages them to gather what they fancy on any particular day.
Sometimes these finds turn into a more serious collection, but meanwhile it is enjoyed by all.


  1. We keep a collection place too. I used to try and keep them up and kind of preserve them, but it's much more fun to keep them accessible, where they can get at them and look and touch.

    I like how you used the CM quotes, I've just read over this part again recently and did a whole bunch of marking up. I underlined those same quotes :)

    amy in peru

  2. Visiting from the CM carnival...I just realized my grandmother was quoting Charlotte Mason when she told me "Be sure that your children each day have something to love, something to do and something to think about."

    This is wonderful. Such freedoms!

    P.S. Your comment on the tree pastels made my day! And Nana's too :) Can't wait to see your results.

  3. Tricia - The tree pastels are already up. They are at the end of this post-

  4. Anonymous15.10.10

    Lovely Post Phyllis, we used to have a nature table, but it ended up being a bit neglected. You have inspired me to find a little space for our nature treasures.


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