Home School Life Journal

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

Outdoor Hour:Beginning a Tree Focus

“Natural is our love for trees!"
-Anna Comstock, Handbook of Nature Study, page 618

We combined this challenge with the suggestions from Take a Child Outside. First we walked outside into our backyard and asked questions: How many trees do you see? Are they all the same? What is different about them? Compare the leaves, bark, flowers, buds — everything you notice.
I divided them into pairs and blindfolded one of them and asked the other child in the pair to gently lead his partner to a tree in our backyard. The leader then encouraged the blindfolded partner to get to know the tree through touch and smell. Encouraged them to feel the bark, find branches, smell the bark and estimate how big around the tree is by hugging the trunk.

Katie even felt the roots of the tree with her feet.


What things made that tree unique?

They then switched places and the leader then became the lead.

Then they all gathered to lie on their backs on a blanket under a tree.

I had them look into the branches and asked them questions: Can you see the top branch?

What patterns do you see?

What other things are present? What animals can you find moving around in the tree?

Close your eyes and listen to the leaves move in the wind. What other sounds do you hear? Feel the air on your face, arms and hands.

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