Take a Child Outside

Nature Journals

  • Wednesday, September 30, 2020

It's Take a Child Outside week! Each day, a new activity will post on the event calendar to inspire your family with ideas and activities to get outside together.

After a week of spending time outdoors and really observing what and who is living right outside your door, your family might be interested in documenting what you're seeing. Photos are a quick way to capture what you see, but I'll encourage you to dig deeper and start a nature journal.

nature journal page example

I admit, when I hear the word journal I sometimes cringe right along with my children. You want me to draw? You want me to reflect on what I saw? The first thing I had to tell myself was it doesn't have to be art museum quality and there isn't a "wrong" way to journal. Throw the rules out the window and just have fun with it. Draw upside down or sideways in the journal. Stick figures are totally okay. And, yes sometimes all the "reflection" has to be is a single word - green.

The most important thing about a nature journal is spending time outside surrounded by nature and observing it. How you choose to record those observations will be as varied and beautiful as each of you!

If you're still hesitant about starting the journey to nature journaling, Ms. Joy has made special Take a Child Outside Get Outside journal prompts to help you. Print out your prompts and then watch the instructions on how to fold it into a journal.

Share what your family is doing this week. Use the hashtag #TakeAChildOutside and #JCRA so you can share with us what you are doing this week with your families.

Take a Child Outside, September 24–30

An initiative of The North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences and inspired by Richard Louv's book Last Child in the Woods, Take a Child Outside week was founded to help connect children with nature.

Visit the Museum's Web site to find out more about this annual week and other locations to go explore the outdoors with your children.

All Ages.
Please contact Elizabeth Overcash, children's program coordinator, at elizabeth_overcash@ncsu.edu for more information about this program.