Spring has officially sprung here in Texas, and now it is gone. Temperatures are beginning to rise, ever so slightly. The days are longer, and the late sunset and summer hours have allowed us to venture to undiscovered places where the night creatures lurk.
We are moving on in our NaturExplorers series from Incredible Creeks (if you missed my review you may read it here), to Flying Creatures of the Night Sky. This nature study series especially appealed to my older children. Let me tell you why . . .
"We are enjoying incorporating these studies into our Nature Walk time. It has provided inspiration and a break from the daily grind, especially and most surprisingly for my 9th graders. It has helped me realize how bogged down they have gotten with academics and is helping us realize our joy in learning together again."
~ Heather Mac (from an email to NaturExplorers author, Cindy West)Ouch! That is difficult for me to say, but essential for me to recognize. No matter how old my children get, I still need to harbor and nurture their love for learning. They still need me to bless our home education by continually providing them with a gentle learning environment. Over and over, I come back to the words of Roxanne Parks from Homeschool Moms Winter Summit 2014 . . .
Why do I mention this in a review post for NaturExplorers?"What if God intended homeschooling to sanctify you and your children, not to train them academically?"
Well it's like this, with the daily grind of homeschooling, anyone can get bogged down. Simple, rich and economical products like NatureExplorers help home educators stay the course and keep their focus. Even this seemingly creative home educator can run dry every now and again. Using products from homeschool moms who have trodden the path before you is one of the greatest resources that you have, outside of prayer.
So, join us in our re-discovery of joy in learning as we explore Flying Creatures of the Night Sky.
- Camping in the backyard to hear all the wonderful night creature sounds (and enjoy some smore's, of course)
- Night Time nature walks. I am a total chicken in the dark, but my children are surprisingly brave about this!
- Building a Bat Box (kids are still working on this one with their dad)
- Tons & Tons of excellent notebooking projects and ideas.
What we all loved:
- This study was a wonderful summer extension for our Nature Study. We began some of this study and activities in early Spring, got super busy, and restarted this summer. What a wonderful enrichment it has been. So many of the animals we wanted to study are out in full-force during the summer months. Flying Creatures of the Night Sky is a great study for early summer.
- The uniqueness of discovering in God's Creation in the darkness. During nature study we have historically "stuck to the trail" like good scouts. As day-dwellers, the night can bring fear of the unknown. We enjoyed drawing closer when strange sounds were detected, and discovering the source was usually a creature that God purposed for the night.
- The highlight of this study for the kids was discovering a ton of bats in the field behind our house. They were amazed. I was less enthusiastic. Until I considered that this might help drastically reduce the mosquito population around our home. Score!
- I discovered this time around the wonderful Pinboards by Cindy West that helped us find even more simple and resourceful ways to extend our study of Flying Creatures of the Night Sky. You can take a peek here on Pinterest.
- Once again, the price is right for this lovely 67 page, electronic book (PDF version), at only $8.95 each. With such rich resources and lessons I feel this e-book is a thrifty option for any home educator.
What I did not love:
- Again, as with last time, my gripes are not truly gripes exactly. These e-books are so rich and full of amazing ideas and exciting experiments, it feels a little overwhelming and difficult to choose. The kids, however; really enjoyed having so much to choose from, so it may just be my anal-retention and inability to make decisions.
The joyful conclusion:
God's creation is so rich and full of beauty and mystery waiting to be discovered. The harried hoomeschool schedule can bog anyone down, and make it harder to rally the troops for Nature Study. NaturExplores e-books help to keep the creativity and motivation rolling, making outdoor time more attainable.
You can purchase the title Flying Creatures of the Night Sky normally for $8.95
USE DISCOUNT CODE: JoyfulSocksMom
Receive this title for only $6.00
. . . and last but not least, Shining Dawn Books is giving away a complimentary copy of the ebook Bundle: Early Summer this week on my blog, to ONE fortunate reader. This ebook Bundle includes the titles: Flying Creatures of the Night Sky, Frogs and Toads, and Peaceful Ponds.
Want a chance to win? Complete your entry in the Rafflecopter below with a few simple steps and chances for extra entries.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Joyfully Learning with You,
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Joyfully Learning with You,