I’m going to let you in on a little secret: I don’t like to be outside. I love to be indoors where there’s no critters that attack you and leave you covered in itchy red bumps. I don’t like to be outside, but God gave me to boys that LOVE the outdoors. This year I committed to doing more nature studies and nature walks with my guys. The calendar may see that it’s Fall but where I live it’s still Summer. It can be too hot to be outside so I’ve started doing some nature studies with my boys indoors.
When I think of fall I think of the leaves changing and pumpkins and apples. I thought it would be fun to do a quick nature study with my boys about apples. They are one of our favorite fruits so it was fun to learn about how they grow. I started off with a short story called “How the Apple Blossom Came Back” from Outdoor Secrets. I also asked both my boys for a narration and then we headed to the table for some hands on fun!
Our short story explained to us that you can find a blossom on the inside of an apple. I never realized this because I typically cut our apples the other way. My boys were very excited to see the blossom in the center of the apple once it was sliced. The trick is to cut the apple from side to side and not top to bottom.
I had one more activity for my boys before I was going to let them eat their apples: apple stamping. This is the first year that we have been keeping nature journals and I love them. My plan was to have them stamp the apples on a page so that we could still see the blossom in the center. It didn’t work out that well but they still had a lot of fun. Also both my boys wrote short poems that I copied at the bottom of their pages.
While my boys enjoyed apples for a snack we read some books about apples and apple trees. I wish that we had an apple orchard to visit, but we grow citrus where we live. We spend some time reading books about apples, orchards and farms. I even threw in some fun picture books and stories about Johnny Appleseed. I found some pictures of apple orchards and blossoms online and we had fun looking at the beautiful pictures. Here are some of the books that we enjoyed:
- How Do Apples Grow by Betsy Maestro
- Johnny Appleseed by Reeve Lindbergh
- Apples, Apples, Apples by Nancy Elizabeth Wallace
- Life on an Apple Orchard by Judy Wolfman
- A Tree is a Plant by Clyde Robert Bulla
We have actually gone on
a few one nature walk so far this school year. But we have done several indoor nature studies. My boys found a frog by our front door and we spent some time looking up different frog species. We were able to identify our little friend and my oldest son even drew pictures of the life cycle of the frog.