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Nature-Themed Advent Calendar 6th December

Nature Advent Calendar

Today’s Reading

Luke 1: 36-38 ESV

 The angel continued “And behold, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son, and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren. For nothing will be impossible with God.” And Mary said, “Behold, I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her.

Today’s Activity

Make time today to sketch the sunset. Observe the glowing colours in the western sky; sunsets tend to be slightly warmer and more intense than sunrises, which, generally speaking are softer, paler, and less intense. So crack out your paints, crayons, or coloured pencils in warm, bold oranges, pinks, yellows, and purples, and paint what you see, being sure to sketch along with your child!

See you tomorrow for more advent fun.

Nature-Themed Advent Calendar 5th December

Nature Advent Calendar

Today’s Reading

Luke 1:32-35 ESV

The angel continued “He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.”

And Mary said to the angel, “How will this be, since I am a virgin?”

And the angel answered her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be called holy—the Son of God.

Today’s Activity

Today, use the last of your woodland gatherings to make a wreath for your home.

Simply take your garden wire and form a rough circle shape, two or three times, entwining the wire as you go.

Once you have your basic wreath shape, simply tuck in short sprigs of evergreen, such as holly, pine, yew, box and so forth. Attach them well with lengths of twine. Also add in berries, fir cones, seed pods, rose hips, ivy, or whatever else takes your fancy!

This will be a truly special decoration for your home, made with love, and representative of your family’s own special nature spot.

Display with pride!

Have you made a few entries into your mother’s advent journal? This is a treasure in the making.

See you tomorrow for more advent fun.

Nature-Themed Advent Calendar 4th December

Nature Advent Calendar

Today’s Reading

Luke 1:29-31 ESV

But Mary was greatly troubled at the Angel’s saying, and tried to discern what sort of greeting this might be. And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus.

Today’s Activity

Today we are going to take some of the lovely nature finds that you brought home from your walk, and give them a little Christmas sparkle. You will also need to save some for tomorrow’s activity.

You will need:

  • Old newspapers
  • A bowl of glue for each person
  • Small paintbrushes (ones that you do not mind using with glue; the glue will spoil them somewhat.)
  • Nature treasures
  • Bowls of glitter; all one colour is very sophisticated, or you could go wild with lots of different colours! Here is a biodegradable glitter
  • Cotton thread

Cover your table with old newspapers to protect the surface, and lay out your treasures. All sorts of items will work with this activity:

  • Holly boughs
  • Pine branches
  • Dried seed heads
  • Pinecones

Give everyone their own bowl of PVA glue and a small paintbrush, then add little ‘highlights’ of glue to each nature treasure.

Take each treasure and carefully dunk it into the bowl of glitter (or take pinches of glitter and sprinkle them over the treasure if it is too large for the bowl.)

Place the treasures carefully on the newspaper & allow them to dry.

If you would like to hang your treasures on your Christmas tree, allow your treasures to dry, then take the cotton thread and tie little loops onto your glittery treasures.

Ta da!

See you tomorrow for more advent fun.

Nature-Themed Advent Calendar 3rd December

Nature Advent Calendar

Today’s Reading

Luke 1:26-28 ESV

In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. And the virgin’s name was Mary. And he came to her and said, “Greetings, O favored one, the Lord is with you!”

Today’s Activity

This week Exploring Nature With Children is all about Christmas plants, so take some time today for a woodland walk. Look around for traditional Christmas plants to bring into your home to decorate for advent, such as pine and holly branches, lovely long strands of ivy, pinecones, and so forth. Dress up in weather appropriate clothing and take a pair of secateurs or robust scissors. Be sure to take small amounts from each individual plant, never over prune. We will be using your treasures over the next few days to decorate your home.

Once you return home, listen to some Christmas carols whilst enjoying well-deserved mugs of hot-chocolate, and enjoy your treasures.

See you tomorrow for more advent fun.

Christmas Plants Week | Exploring Nature With Children

Christmas Plants.jpg

This week in Exploring Nature With Children is ‘Christmas Plants Week’.

Here are some helpful links to get you going:

Happy exploring!

Nature-Themed Advent Calendar 2nd December

Nature Advent Calendar

Today’s Reading

Isaiah 7:14 ESV

Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.

Today’s Activity

Today is Christmas tree day!

Take the family off to choose your Christmas tree; make it the central part of the day and get all the family involved in choosing just the right one. Once home, have a tree decorating party. In our home we listen to Christmas music, drink hot chocolate with candy cane stirrers, and eat special Christmas sweets as we get to work decorating our tree.

If your family has an artificial tree, take it out of storage and join in the fun today.

See you tomorrow for more advent fun.

Nature-Themed Advent Calendar 1st December

Nature Advent Calendar

Thank you for joining me for the first day of our nature-themed advent calendar!

Today’s Reading

Isaiah 9:6-7 ESV

For to us a child is born,

    to us a son is given;

and the government shall be upon his shoulder,

    and his name shall be called

Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,

    Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

 Of the increase of his government and of peace

    there will be no end.

Today’s Activity

Next week in Exploring Nature With Children is all about Christmas plants, so take some time today to enjoy some nature-themed Christmas carols with your child. (The links open to YouTube)

The Holly And The Ivy

The holly and the ivy,
When they are both full grown,
Of all trees that are in the wood,
The holly bears the crown
O, the rising of the sun,
And the running of the deer
The playing of the merry organ,
Sweet singing in the choir.

The holly bears a blossom,
As white as lily flow’r,
And Mary bore sweet Jesus Christ,
To be our dear Saviour
O, the rising of the sun,
And the running of the deer
The playing of the merry organ,
Sweet singing in the choir.

The holly bears a berry,
As red as any blood,
And Mary bore sweet Jesus Christ,
To do poor sinners good
O, the rising of the sun,
And the running of the deer
The playing of the merry organ,
Sweet singing in the choir.

The holly bears a prickle,
As sharp as any thorn,
And Mary bore sweet Jesus Christ,
On Christmas Day in the morn
O, the rising of the sun,
And the running of the deer
The playing of the merry organ,
Sweet singing in the choir.

The holly bears a bark,
As bitter as the gall,
And Mary bore sweet Jesus Christ,
For to redeem us all
O, the rising of the sun,
And the running of the deer
The playing of the merry organ,
Sweet singing in the choir.

The holly and the ivy,
When they are both full grown,
Of all trees that are in the wood,
The holly bears the crown
O, the rising of the sun,
And the running of the deer
The playing of the merry organ,
Sweet singing in the choir.

O Christmas Tree

O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree!
Thy leaves are so unchanging
O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree,
Thy leaves are so unchanging

Not only green when summer’s here,
But also when it’s cold and drear.
O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree,
Thy leaves are so unchanging!

O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree,
Such pleasure do you bring me!
O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree,
Such pleasure do you bring me!

For every year this Christmas tree,
Brings to us such joy and glee.
O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree,
Such pleasure do you bring me!

O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree,
You’ll ever be unchanging!
A symbol of goodwill and love
You’ll ever be unchanging

Each shining light
Each silver bell
No one alive spreads cheer so well

O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree,
You’ll ever be unchanging

Deck The Halls

Deck the halls with boughs of holly,
Fa la la la la, la la la la.
Tis’ the season to be jolly,
Fa la la la la, la la la la.

Don we now our gay apparel,
Fa la la, la la la, la la la.,
Troll the ancient Christmas Carol,
Fa la la la la, la la la la.

See the blazing Yule before us,
Fa la la la la, la la la la.
Strike the harp and join the chorus,
Fa la la la la, la la la la.

Follow me in merry measure
Fa la la la la, la la la la.
While I tell of Yuletide treasure,
Fa la la la la, la la la la.

Fast away the old year passes,
Fa la la la la, la la la la.
Hail the new, ye lads and lasses,
Fa la la la la, la la la la.

Sing we joyous, all together,
Fa la la la la, la la la la.
Heedless of the wind and weather,
Fa la la la la, la la la la la la la la

I would also like to make a gentle suggestion to all reading this today; why not begin an Advent journal to record the precious moments of advent? It need not be a fancy affair, indeed a simple lined spiral bound book can easily be carried around with you and does not have that off-putting tone that expensive, purpose-made journals have, with their pristine and perfect pages! Just take a moment each day to record a memory. I promise this will become a treasure in years to come.

See you tomorrow for more advent fun.

On Sale: The Phenology Wheel Guide

Here are our Phenology Wheels from last year. A phenology wheel is a visual representation of what is happening month by month, in the natural world around you.

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A super quick and easy way to incorporate nature study into your home education, keeping a phenology wheel is a smashing way for you and your family to connect both with nature and each other. A way for all the family to gather together to spend time nature journaling; it’s perfect for families who have children of different ages and stages. Everyone can work together, but at their own level.
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If you’d like to find out more, the Raising Little Shoots Phenology Wheel Guide is a 33 page, photograph heavy guide, to help you step by step, set up your own phenology wheels for the year.
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It’s currently on sale at $6, no code needed. You can purchase here.

WEATHER WEEK | EXPLORING NATURE WITH CHILDREN

Weather Week.jpg

This week in Exploring Nature With Children is ‘Weather Week’.

Here are some helpful links to help with your studies:

Happy exploring!