But Nature Study seemed impossible in the city. There were two trees in our backyard, both less than 3" in diameter. One produced tiny little apples that tasted so good that the children almost destroyed the tree pulling them off. Outside of every window in the house, you could see other houses. We did see birds occasionally, but our little attempt at gardening did not bear much fruit :).
So now that we are on the farm, so much Nature Study is happening naturally, and i am in a position to use the beautiful book i had asked my mom to keep an eye out for (and she found it!)
Ever since i saw an open page on Ann Voskamp's blog, i wanted this book! What makes it so attractive to me is that it is by a Canadian author. So many American or British resources assume that the seasons are all equally weighted, but we are up North, and winter comes sometimes before Halloween, and stays sometimes till the end of June. So we really have two seasons - Winter and Not Winter :).
I'm enjoying Not Winter right now!
Anyway, i have gone through this book and picked out fun activities to do with my children, and slotted them into my planner every Friday.
I did the same for the Mondays in September, but this time, planning Art lessons. First, a three part series on early Art (a la the Lascaux caves), to go with our Tapestry of Grace studies, and then two weeks of Albrecht Durer, to go with our Rosetta Stone German course (and Dad's German heritage)
Tuesdays will be Composers, and i'm planning to use Opal Wheeler's books, which i have several of, and make this a treats and tea time, with music in the background and stories.
and Wednesdays will be Saints. As a Protestant home, we don't pay a lot of attention to Saints. But there are so many beautiful stories, and so much inspiration in the history of the saints, so i am including them. I also plan to include some of the stories from Jesus Freaks, about martyrs in the past and even now in the modern era.
I'm planning this all at the same time (following lunch) every day, a little beauty and inspiration for the children before they get back to their studies in the afternoons. I've left Thursday blank, because we have fencing, violin lessons, and hopefully boy's choir that day in the afternoons and early evening.
We're also using Rosetta Stone to learn German this year - i have workbooks to print out for each child, and Daddy should be able to help with pronunciation.
I do have one last thing I'd like to fit in, but not sure if i can find an efficient way to do it - Canadian history? I kind of overdosed on Canadian history in school, and then kind of ignored it with my children, but I'd like Wyatt to finish high school with at least a little glimpse of what brought Canada to where we are now. I have a DVD set my friend Kim gave me, and i may use that a little bit...