We are pretty new to interest led science – this is the first year I’ve let TJ take the reins and choose her own science topics. In spite of my initial reservations, I am so glad we made the leap to interest led learning.
Interest Led Learning: Nature Study
Each term TJ chooses a new science focus and for one term, she wanted to focus on learning about plants. So we pulled out all the resources we had on our shelves, found some things online, and ordered a pile of library books.
Each day she had to read for 30 minutes from a book of her choice. Twice a week she found a section from her reading that she could outline (working on those writing skills!). She also found some projects and notebooking ideas that she wanted to work on. So she alternated between outlining, notebooking, and projects each week.
It worked very well (and makes me wish that I had loosened the reins earlier). It’s so nice just letting her loose for an hour each day (and getting a little break from teaching!) – she has done amazingly well and it’s so nice to see her blossoming independence.
Favorite interest led learning resources
We focused on plant life for one term and used just a few resources for our interest led learning sessions. Some of our favorite resources:
- The Handbook of Nature Study (this is a must-have resource for nature study)
- A good quality sketch book and colored pencils
- Field Guides (Birds & Trees)
- Nature Study with Charlotte Mason (some good tips and advice)
- Considering God’s Creation (we don’t use the full program, but it has some fun activities and printable pages that make great notebooking pages)
And a few fun extras:
- Tree Leaf Bingo
- Nature Journal Pages
- Botany Scavenger Hunt
- Flower Flip
- Leaf Cross Section
- Guided Nature Walks
I am very satisfied with our new science routine – it gives TJ some independence (and gives me a bit of a break!) and she is more engaged in learning when it’s a topic that she’s interested in knowing more about.