Thursday, March 13, 2008

Green Hour Challenge week 4...follow up

Earlier this week I posted about our in-depth focus for the next coming weeks. Since I love birds and the boys are interested in them as well, that's our choice. You can read more about it in this post. I also listed some resources that are available if you are interested in studying birds too.

I got a lot out of our reading assi
gnment (pg. 10-11 HNS...Handbook of Nature Study) about the uses of scientific names. Page 11 says this..."If the teacher says, 'I have a pink hepatica. Can anyone find me a blue one?' the children, who naturally like grownup words (yep, I have those kids!), will soon be calling these flowers hepaticas. But if the teacher says, 'These flowers are called hepaticas. Now please everyone remember the name. Write it in your books as I write it on the blackboard, and in half an hour I shall ask you again what it is,' the pupils naturally look upon the exercise as a word lesson and its real significance is lost."

Also on page 11..."The child should never be required to learn th
e name of anything in the nature study work; but the name should be used so often and so naturally in his presence that he will learn it without being conscious of the process."

The above is so true and we have experienced that. I made a conscious effort when the boys were young to call things by their "proper" names (including body parts!). When we go to the zoo, I say, "Look at the White-Handed Gibbon", not "Loo
k at the monkey". In fact, I think parents are selling their kids short to call animals monkey, kitty (when referring to a ferocious tiger), bird. As Anne (remember, first name basis here now) mentions "the name should be used so often and so naturally in his presence that he will learn it without being conscious of the process."

Magnus was just a little tyke when we were at the zoo one time. He overheard a dad say to his child, "Look at the cow, son." Magnus turned to him and said, "It's a Bongo". Now, the fact that my child corrected an adult is not the issue. The fact that I never referred to it as a cow, but as a Bongo is the point. Magnus knows it's correct name.

As far as our Nature Walk/Study this week, again, it was somewhat "Magnus lead". You can read about it here, and I encourage you to do so. It proves that this, Nature Study, is working and developing observation skills and a love of the things God created. Even though our in-depth study is on birds, I took the excitement of the discovery of the bee and we looked into that further. I love not being held in bondage to a specific curriculum and topic, but to be able to learn more about the things that interest us.

Also this week, I implemented tea time. I have chosen t
o read from the Burgess Bird Book for Children during this time two days a week. The boys have become familiar with
the Wren
and the English Sparrow.Not quite sure how to record what we are learning from the book yet. I don't know if I should have them draw the birds in their nature journals or just use them (nature journals) as a means to record actual observations. I've thought about notebooking and have found some pages for them to color. Maybe I can print pictures off the internet and we can make our own bird guide. I am just unsure right now.

Thanks again for following us on this journey. Check back next week! Oh, and I will probably be posting more at my nature blog...Dancing with Dandelions...so be sure to check over there periodically. See you next week! Until then, try to get outside and listen to the birds. Tweet, tweet!
(No pictures this week due to Collin having my camera...boo hoo.)

8 comments:

LisaWA said...

Again... love the idea of tea time... thats so cool... way to go...

you crack me up... I giggled a lot reading your post. It was very enjoyable.

Great job once again...

Lisa

Barb-Harmony Art Mom said...

Isn't the Handbook of Nature Study great? I keep thinking how simple everything else and how many things I've been doing "right" all along. Just like you with using the proper names for things, sometimes we naturally get it "right". :)

Great examples in this post. I appreciate your taking the time to write it for all of us to enjoy.

Barb-Harmony Art Mom

Tina said...

I love the idea of tea time too.

Isn't this fun! I love the possiblities we are now imagining, thinking of, creating. There is so much you can do, or not do, and have a wonderful time learning... and this is important... with the kids. :o)

Wonderful post my friend!

~Tina

LisaWA said...

Hi Brittney! *Ü*

I emailed Linda Fay (I think I mispelled her name) here is her blog

http://crammed-with-heaven.blogspot.com/2007/04/join-online-nature-journal-blogroll.html

Here is her email

ankaraacademy@yahoo.com

Once you send her an email with your blog link, she will send you a code to place on your side bar.... once she sees that you have done that... she adds you to the blog roll. *Ü* She tends to take a little bit to get back, but she will...

Night friend! Im off to watch Lost!!!

Makita said...

We are doing birds as well (specifically song birds). Thank you for the list of resources! :D

mamasmurf said...

I enjoyed reading your post - have to agree Barb (above comment), some things the book tells us we should be doing we have already been doing - just plain, old, common sense!
We're enjoying this a lot too,
~Chrissy

Lori Carr said...

love the idea of making your own bird field guide! That would be so much fun!

School for Us said...

I really enjoyed reading your post, too. And, I love your quotes and thoughts about using "real" names for things! I love that my daughter and I are learning to identify birds and wildflowers by their name instead of "that black bird", etc. And, I love that you call the author of HONS, "Anne!"

Now, I want a trip to the zoo! :-)