Our Wonderful World by Emery Lewis Howe is a rich nature study book available for free download covering backyard neighbors, feathered friends, garden life, four-footed comrades, and the earth and its neighbors.
Written for young children, this treasure includes experiments, activities such as drawing, narrating, and writing, and related Scripture verses.
By covering one chapter a week, there are 32 weeks worth of lessons (not including this introduction). We’ve added suggestions, helps for mom, and resource recommendations that can round out the studies for older children. By adding a weekly lab, and more related, comprehensive readings (such as a biology text), you may find you have enough material to qualify as a biology credit for an older student.
For young children, simply reading the book may be enough. You know your children best, but don’t overwhelm them. Have fun!
- To get acquainted with the book, read the introduction on pages 9-12 to your children: “To the Boys and Girls Who Read This Book.”
- Throughout the book, a reference is made to the child’s notebook. You might want to use the first week to prepare a notebook for use by decorating a cover sheet, and adding a variety of different types of paper for drawing, illustrating, and writing. Donna Young has several different types of nature journal notebooking sheets available.
- Grab a copy of the Handbook of Nature Study by Anna Botsford Comstock. Originally written in 1911 by the head of the Department of Nature Study at Cornell University, this much-loved handbook shows us how to observe nature in 887 pages of detail, and makes a great reference for the go-and-observe-type activities in our study. While the paperback is still in print, the original is also available online as a free download.
- The book is divided into five parts. You’ll find review questions or narration prompts and a few activities for each part of the book in the review section at the end.