We have been reading A Tree in the Trail by Holling C. Holling for a unit in geography over the last several weeks. We slowly read through a chapter or two and then we bring learning to life by going on an adventure in the theme of “A Tree in the Trail”!
Our latest learning adventure took place at a “Nature Playground”, a space dedicated to a natural environment with tree stumps, a dirt tunnel, flowers, and large river rocks. We encountered over 80 lizards on our outing to the nature playground! We observed rabbits hiding among the deer grass, and several colorful birds perched in the trees above us, singing the sweet song of creation.
As we continued down the path, we came across a Cottonwood Tree! The Cottonwood Tree is the “Tree” in The Tree in the Trail! This was an exciting time for my kids to get a close up look at the tree that is the center of the story that we all have come to enjoy.
This nature playground is the perfect outlet for my nature-loving children. They explored the area, discovered a variety of lizards, and build a make-shift shelter from sticks and large log pieces that doubled as stools to sit on!
Benefits of Studying Nature
Studying nature is an excellent way to encourage a love of learning and to set a foundation to understand creation, science, and develop observation skills.
Studying nature also provides a opportunity for children to discover and explore the world around them, and gives them a reference point and hands on experience when they read books about science and nature.
Studying nature encourages creativity and artistic expression. Through nature journaling and drawing, a child can express the beauty that they observed, the creature that captivated them, and the words that come easily when describing their experience out on the nature trail.
Studying nature encourages physical activity! Climbing rocks, climbing trees, running through the grass, dodging tree branches, and balancing on a log are some of the activities a child will encounter when outside exploring creation.
Studying nature encourages a love for what God has created! I am brought closer to the Lord through being out enjoying His beautiful creation. When you look at creation and see the handiwork of an Almighty God, you can’t help but be in awe of our Amazing, Mighty, and Creative God!
“Through Him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made” John 1:3