Monday, January 07, 2008

Learning in the Great Outdoors - January 2008 - #8

Happy New Year!
And welcome to the eighth edition of...

Learning in the Great Outdoors is intended as a trading center for those who use, or want to use, the environment as an integrating context for learning. If you are a teacher, a nature center educator or naturalist, a homeschooler who wants to use the environment in your studies, an amateur or professional botanist or zoologist or geologist or other science buff, a parent, a student --- anyone with an interest in sharing the environment with children, please join us!
As the Grand Poohbah of this carnival I’d like to start the new year with an invitation to our readers: Put in your name as a host for a future edition. I will count this effort a success when it becomes self-perpetuating. Thanks to Tricia at The Miss Rumphius Effect who hosted #5, to Julie of Pines Above Snow who hosted #7, to Silvia at Po Moyemu -- In My Opinion who will host #9 next month, and to Barb at The Heart of Harmony who is scheduled to host #11 our first anniversary edition in April. Please consider taking a turn at putting a carnival together. [Update 1-09-08: Tricia at The Miss Rumphius Effect has volunteered host the carnival again in June. Thanks, Tricia!] Just drop a note to me (Terrell) at thelimb[at]mac[dot]com. I will be happy to line you up for any available month to come. I have established a “home” for Learning in the Great Outdoors at:
Learning in the Great Outdoors

There you can learn more about our Carnival of Environmental Education and how to host it.

And now, on with this hodgepodge of a Winter Revue!

Update 1-09-08: I have fixed the links in the following paragraph.

Tricia at The Miss Rumphius Effect has started a new blog, Open Wide, Look Inside, a blog dedicated to utilizing poetry and children's literature across the curriculum. Check out her section on Connecting Science and Children's Literature.

Ms. Newburn has a good classroom website called Ms. Newburn's Math & Science Blog. Her latest entry The Story of Stuff will point you to her Ecological Footprint website.

Terrell, your host, now has way too many blogs. You can check out my classroom blog, Mr. Shaw's Virtual Classroom, the Science Fair blog, his Podcasts, and, of course, our new Learning in the Great Outdoors - Outdoors Central.

Dana presents Enjoying the raptor migration posted at Backyard Birding.
"... Each fall, millions of these magnificent birds migrate south and head through a narrow corridor in central Veracruz, Mexico. That, I am sure, is a truly amazing sight. I have read that it is like watching a river of hawks flying overhead as they make their way to their winter homes...."

Photo by Barb at The Heart of Harmony.

Barb at The Heart of Harmony suggests Heading out for a Winter Nature Walk and gives a good resource to get you ready - Keeping a Nature Journal by Clare Walker Leslie. Barb will be our host in April - by then she'll be thawed, maybe.

While we're at it let me point you to Barb's talented daughter, AmandaChristina, who has her own website, Hearts and Trees. Check out the great Winter Nature Walk Worksheet she has created.

Barb has still another blog dedicated solely to nature study -- The Handbook of Nature Study! Check it out.

Granny J is still out Walking Prescott Arizona with her camera, this week capturing Gifts of Winter.

Phil B. presents The Only Future is a Sustainable Future posted at Phil for Humanity.
"... the only viable option is for humanity to become completely self sustaining. That means all resources, such as water, food, raw materials, and fuel, must be from renewable resources for civilization to continue as is. ..."
Homeschooling mom Jacci agrees with your host that children need Long Hours Outdoors. Check her post at The Educational Life. She quotes Charlotte Mason from Home Education:
"I make a point, says a judicious mother, of sending my children out, weather permitting, for an hour in the winter, and two hours a day in the summer months. That is well; but it is not enough... "

Detail of photo by Farm School.

Becky and her charges at Farm School were undeterred when School canceled, on account of... the white stuff. It looks to me like some Learning is taking place in the Great Outdoors of Alberta, Canada! Social Studies - temporary housing of the Inuit; Science - weather unit; Math - what is optimum interior volume for a three-boy igloo, and, of course when their all holed up -- when it gets "really" cold up there -- Farm School can write about the experience. This picture, by the way, was taken at -20ยบ C on November 19 -- a month of autumn to go!

What Do Rabbits Do In Winter? asks Karen, otherwise known as Grandmother Wren.
"...You can sometimes tell that a rabbit lives nearby if you see small shrubs or tree seedlings nipped off just above the snow. You may see piles of their round, dark colored droppings. It's easy to identify a rabbit's tracks or footprints. When hopping, the hind feet land first with the front foot prints appearing inside the back feet's prints..."
The little rascals can be seen most anywhere. Your host saw a little guy at dusk in downtown Atlanta last week, hopping among the shrubs in little Centennial Park.

Cloudscome at A Wrung Sponge is someone who enjoys two of my favorites, poetry and children's literature. Here are three recent posts of her nature poems - two haikus (one, two) and a sonnet.

Another nature poet is Kerrdelune at Beyond the Fields We Know. Take a look a several of her winter photographs, and two accompanying poems -- one, two, three, four...

Detail of photo from 10,000 Birds

Mike at 10,000 Birds is busy Unpacking the 2007 Year List. This is just one place to start on 10,000 Birds if you are an Avian Enthusiast. This blog is full of interesting stuff, even for those like me who are merely casual oglers of feathered folk.

Detail of photo from The DC Birding Blog.

Another lover of birds is the DC Birder at The DC Birding Blog. He has already seen A New Life Bird for the New Year, the Rough-legged Hawk, above.

Meanwhile if birding is your thing, you might want to check out this listing of the Fat Birder Top 500 Birding Websites. Our friends at 10,000 Birds and DC Birder are high on the list!

Dana at Backyard Birding offers a recipe for Our Home Made Duet as well as 6 Ways to Offer Suet to Your Birds.

There's always lots of interesting birds to see at Bird Ecology Study Group Nature Society (Singapore) -- this morning a beautiful Asian Paradise Flycatcher.

Mrs. Bluebird in For the Scientist in All of Us at Bluebird's Classroom has been to a science teachers' conference and noticed a change in the way publishing companies are handling science.

Joanne at By Sun and Candlelight has listed her homeschooling Themes and Plans for January. You may want to explore a bit more by clicking on "Watching Nature" under "What I Love" in the sidebar.

Detail of photo from Stop the Ride.

Are you ready to live off the land? Stephanie will help you make that prospect a little more tasty with her wild recipe for Grape Ketchup or her "original pink lemonade" in A Wild Fall Harvest. And if you end up with a belly ache check out her Medicinal Uses of Wild Plants. Check it all out at Stop the Ride!.

Tiffany at NatureMomsBlog has reviewed The Self-sufficiency Handbook:
"Self sufficiency is a topic near and dear to me. I don’t know why really but it has always been something that fascinated me…that and survivalism. I LOVE reading stories about families that live in octagonal houses in the middle of a nowhere, using solar power, growing their own food, and making all their home furnishings by hand. I am not quite sure if that life would be right for me but I can live vicariously right?..."
"...And at last, Preston won me over when he donned climbing gear to ascend the trees himself. The author explores alongside scientists and skilled amateur climbers an uncharted world 38 stories above the ground, a place he likens to 'coral reefs in the air.'..."

Photo by Silvia - Can you identify this guy?

Silvia at Po Moyemu -- In My Opinion has posted some pics of Nature in Our Yard and she would like someone to Help Identify This Bird!

Dana of Simple Pleasures has posted photographs of A Few of My Favorite Guests, her backyard birds.

From Ribble Cycle Diaries

Reigh Belisama at The Ribble Cycle Diaries has posted a group of pictures to celebrate Midwinter's Day on the Ribble.

Rurality has captured some southbound views of wild things with his game camera and some fine fungi.

John Peter Thompson of Invasive Notes invites you to vote on Which Presidential Candidate do you think best understands Invasive Species Issues?

GrrlScientist presents Captive Breeding Negatively Impacts Reproductive Success in the Wild posted at Living the Scientific Life, saying, "Does the same thing apply to birds and other vertebrates? If so, we need to identify precisely how captive-breeding affects these animals and their future reproductive success, and what we can do to help preserve these species."

Phil B. presents Recycle Christmas Trees « Phil for Humanity posted at Phil for Humanity.

Now there's a website dedicated to the women in the outdoors, The Wild WoodsWoman. Here she gives some pointers for an Emergency Kit in Your Vehicle.

Yellow House Homeschool in France posts a couple of gorgeous winter shots In the Bleak Midwinter.

Sarah writes of the Monarch butterfly migration in Cape May Migration posted at The Reading Zone.

"A summary of my trip to Cape May during the peak of monarch migration season. We raise monarchs in our classroom and I wish I could have brought my children with me!"

Detail of photo by Sarah .

That concludes this edition. Submit your blog article to the next edition of
Learning in the Great Outdoors
using our
carnival submission form.
Past posts and future hosts can be found on our
blog carnival index page.

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