Cultivate a Love for Nature with Charlotte Mason’s 4 Steps to Nature Journaling

by Jen

Charlotte Mason held the view that kids should spend a lot of time in the outdoors, exploring and engaging in the natural world.  She encouraged her students to keep a nature diary in which they could record their observations since she believed it was an important component of a child’s education.  

How can we teach our children to nature journal as Charlotte Mason instructed her pupils to do?  Let’s divide it into a few simple actions. 

Step 1: Gather Your Journal Materials

Gathering your supplies is the first step in nature journaling.  A notepad or sketchbook, together with some simple art materials like pencils, readers, paints and brushes, are all you need. 

To assist in identifying the flora and animals, you might also want to bring a magnifying glass and a field book, or use an identification app on your phone.  

Step 2: Spend Time in Nature

Next step is to go outside!  Children should spend at least an hour outside each day, according to Mason, and they should be encouraged to explore and take an interest in their surroundings.  

You can add outside time to your daily homeschool routine for hikes or walks.  Visit your neighborhood park, a wildlife reserve, or even just your own backyard.  

Spending time in nature and taking notice of your own plants, animals, rocks and trees can be as simple as spending time in your own backyard.  

Step 3: Observe and Record

It’s time to observe and document what your child noticed once you’re outside.  Encourage your kids to explore the outdoors using all of their senses.  How does the back of a tree feel to your touch?  What sounds do you hear?  What do you smell?

Your child can now record their finding is in a nature journal.  They can sketch, jot down thoughts or emotions they have, or even compose a poem or short tale about what they have seen.  

There is no standard way to keep a nature journal, so allow your child to get creative!

Step 4: Reflect and Share

Reflecting and sharing their nature journal with others are the final steps.  Encourage your kids to think back on what they’ve learned.  

You can encourage your children to share their journal with others.  You can put up a showcase of their work in your house or allow your kids to show off their journal with friends and family.  

Nature Journaling is really that easy!

I heartily endorse the Charlotte Mason-style nature journaling for your kids. It’s a great opportunity to interact more deeply with nature, develop observational skills and encourage a passion for learning.

It not only enables kids to respect natures beauty but also inspires them to become keen observers and record keepers.

The Charlotte Mason method gives children the freedom to experiment and express themselves while also giving them instructions on how to keep accurate and useful notes.

I think that keeping a nature journal is an excellent way for parents and teachers to inspire their kids to be imaginative, inquisitive, and curious about the world around them.

Give nature journaling a try if your searching for a fun and educational activity for your children to include in your homeschool!

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