Begin Nature Journaling Today


I know many of you would like to start nature journaling. It’s really very simple; go for a walk, or look out of your window, and simply begin to sketch. Sometimes though, it is good to have a little more direction, so here are some ideas to get you going:

  • Begin a plant study, observe it for an entire year and record its changes. This could be a wildflower, tree, shrub, or plant growing in your garden.
  • Study the sky, the movement of the sun, sunrise and sunset times, and the hours of daylight, the position of the stars, and cycle of the moon.
  • Keep a nature journal all about your garden. Record what grows when, plan your dream vegetable patch, include layouts, sketches of plants, photographs. This will be a useful resource and a great treasure.
  • Spend 15 minutes a day watching your bird feeder. Record who visits and when. Follow up with studies on the individual birds.
  • Begin a Calendar of Firsts to record local phenology.
  • Record the weather. Cloud shapes, precipitation, wind direction and speed.

I hope this helps to give you some ideas. If you would like a regular nature study companion, you may find my book Exploring Nature With Children to be useful. A complete, year-long curriculum designed to guide you, step by step, through an entire calendar year of nature study. Completely self-contained, this book has all the information you need to make nature study happen regularly for your family.

Happy exploring!


2 thoughts on “Begin Nature Journaling Today

  1. Great ideas! I especially like the plant study and the garden ideas. Thank you. I was skimming through John Muir Laws’ book The Laws Guide to Nature Drawing and Journaling tonight, and he had another idea I thought was a good one: “Pick a letter of the alphabet (let’s say B). Think of things that start with the letter B that could become the focus of a little investigation: birds, beetles, berries, things that are blue, etc.” I was thinking this would be a fun exercise to do with kids!

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