Autumn Photo Project

Autumn Photo Project

From the Ultimate Naturalist and Journey Level Memberships

It’s always fun to take on a photo challenge and this printable will be something that everyone in your family can use. There are two different photo challenge lists: one for younger children, one a little more advanced.

Autumn Photo Project

Members can print their Autumn Photo Project printable by logging into their membership, scrolling down to the printables lists, and locating the Seasonal section.  Print the page, cut the lists out, and adhere one right into your nature journal as a reminder!

If you would like to go on an autumn photo hunt and you still need to purchase a membership, do it today!

Use discount code FALLPHOTO for $5 off an Ultimate Naturalist Membership. Code expires 9/30/2020.

Join Us Ultimate Naturalist June 2020

We did the Insect Photo Hunt in August and now we are going to work on the Autumn Photo Project in September and October.

Insect Photo Hunt printable activity

Outdoor Hour Challenge: Cockroach Nature Study

This week is an insect hunt. Take time to prepare for your nature study by reading the lesson for cockroaches in the Handbook of Nature Study by Anna Botsford Comstock. You may not find a cockroach but don’t be discouraged!

Look for any insects in your yard or neighborhood. Talk about what makes an insect an insect. (Find information on this in the Handbook of Nature Study in the introduction to insects section. In my copy of the HNS it’s found on pages 294-300.)

 Outdoor Hour Challenge Insect Study Cockroach @handbookofnaturestudy

View the original challenge here: Outdoor Hour Challenge – Cockroach.

There are suggestions in this challenge for observing any insect you find during your Outdoor Hour Challenge time. Remember there are many insects listed under the Insect Tab on the website for many common insects you may encounter. Feel free to study a different insect this week if your children are interested in learning about their insect discovery. In addition, there is an Insect Photo Hunt activity printable available to everyone if you decide you want to try that challenge.

Cockroach nb page 1Cockroach nb page 2Cockroach nb page 3

There are easy to use notebook pages in the ebook for members to use after their cockroach nature study.

Sample to view: Outdoor Hour Challenge Autumn Nature Study 2015 Sample Pages

Handbook of Nature Study Autumn Nature Study 2015 Cover Image

If you don’t have a membership yet, click the graphic above and join today for immediate access to the 26 ebooks and so much more! Remember that all levels, even the Discovery level membership, include access to all of the archived newsletters!

Topics in this ebook include:

  • Swallows and swifts
  • Catfish
  • Jewelweed
  • Prickly lettuce
  • Cockroach
  • Field horsetail
  • Catbird
  • Calcite, limestone, marble
  • Chicken
  • Turkey
  • Hedgehog fungi
  • Sapsucker
  • Brooks


 Join Us Ultimate Naturalist June 2020

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Members Please Read: Changes to the Outdoor Hour Challenge

I highly recommend that members read this post for important information.

Sitting in my office looking out the window, I see the very first signs of the autumn coming. One thing about where I live in Central Oregon, summer is very short. It barely feels like we’re in the rhythm of summer and then the air turns crisp, the willows start to show color, the leaves rustling on the aspens have a different sound as they twirl in the afternoon breezes and the air just has that certain autumn feel to it if you pay close attention. It all rushes in too fast.

Unlike many of my readers, autumn is NOT my favorite season. I feel unsettled and restless.

With the turn of the calendar to September, I find myself thinking about what is to come as far as creating nature study ideas for the Outdoor Hour Challenge family of participants. 2020 has been a life changer for many of us and with those changes we sometimes see more clearly where we need to be on our personal journey. I’ve loved every minute of my work here on the Handbook of Nature Study, but I think change is in the air here as well. My thoughts are turning towards what comes next.

Don’t panic! The next year here on the blog will go on as usual but behind the scenes there will be a slowing down of writing new materials. Not a true “retirement”, but a slowing of the pace to allow room for exploring the next chapter in my life.

The Ultimate Naturalist Library

I feel like by the end of August 2021, I’ll have enough materials, printables, and activities in the Ultimate Naturalist Library to provide a complete nature study curriculum to most families for many, many years. Just think, I’ve covered the complete Handbook of Nature Study several times through with the Outdoor Hour Challenge.

Way back in 2008 when I started this project, I could’ve never imagined how much we would accomplish here with the Outdoor Hour Challenge. In addition to using the contents of the Handbook of Nature Study, there are additional topics that were of interest to my family and to participants like regional wildflowers, herbs, more birds, and different habitats. We worked our way through all of the seasons by closely observing many subjects together. The Outdoor Hour Challenge has helped families all around the world to develop a relationship with their own habitat and subjects.

Plan 1 Graphic for Changes to the Memberships

Changes to the Outdoor Hour Challenge

I plan on adding to the Ultimate Naturalist Library for the next year (September 2020-August 2021). After that, I will be keeping the website up and active with weekly challenges from the archives.

What do I plan on releasing during the year from September 2020 to August 2021? I’ll be adding new printables to the library and eventually two new nature-related ebooks (topics to be determined).

Starting in September 2021, I will no longer be adding anything new to the library. Members will still have complete access to the library of Outdoor Hour Challenges and ebooks, newsletters, and printables for the foreseeable future. Your memberships will still be rich and full of all sorts of nature study ideas by gleaning from the library topics of interest to your family.

New Ebooks Topics

New Ebooks – Writing and Releasing in the 2020-2021 School Year

During the next year, I have time blocked out to write two final ebooks. I have so many ideas swirling around in my head but I thought it might be a good idea to ask you readers what topics you would like to cover with the Outdoor Hour Challenge.

>>>>>>>>Email me your thoughts! [email protected]

Here are a few of the ideas I have and you can add additional ideas if you have them:

  • Herbs – additional herb challenges
  • Wildflowers – one last wildflower ebook
  • Gardening for Kids ebook
  • General nature study ebook with more “how to” ideas and printables
  • Nature Journal ebook with simple ideas and examples drawn from past examples
  • A particular habitat that we haven’t already studied

Planning My Future

I’m not ready for a complete retirement from writing for the Outdoor Hour Challenge yet. It still feels relevant and valuable to keep sharing my love and passion for nature. But I want to take the time to see where the next path is going to lead me. I started off as a busy homeschooling mom of teenage boys who had a love for the outdoors. Now those boys are in their mid-twenties and I’m retired from homeschooling.  We’ll be celebrating the first wedding of one of my four children. It’s a time of change.

Thanks for taking time to read my thoughts and PLEASE email me with any questions or comments. Send me your ebook ideas and then keep on going with your family’s nature study plan as we all work through the end of 2020 and face 2021, braced for what that will bring.

My email: [email protected]