Nature study is something many of us who were traditionally schooled
have never experienced, and yet it is so enriching for our students.
So how can nature phobic homeschool parents include quality nature
study in their student's curriculum? Orrin Street Press has come
to the rescue with their Nature Study and More with Rascal e-book,
retailing for only $7! By reading aloud the book, Rascal by
Sterling North, parents and students are introduced to nature study
via this e-book without even stepping outdoors!
Rascal is a delightful autobiography about Sterling North's adventures
with his pet raccoon named Rascal in the early 1900s. This e-book
nature study guide for Rascal covers animals and plants of Wisconsin,
mapping exercises for Wisconsin and Europe, exploring how people
lived at that time, drawing and sketching, enrichment activities,
The study can be adapted to multiple ages, but it includes enough
high-level thinking and activities to easily engage older students.
As the book by North is read, Socratic questions and activities
included in the e-book correspond to each chapter. Notebooking
pages that support these activities are also included, and multiple
copies can be easily printed to provide resources for all your
Although much about nature can be learned and appreciated from
simply utilizing this resource, we were delighted to discover that
our family became much more excited about exploring nature beyond
our front door as we worked through this material! We are now including
nature walks several times a week with our students on a nearby
hiking trail. It's amazing how our eyes have been opened to God's
creation around us!
The only difficulty with this study was locating the book itself, Rascal.
The Orrin Street Press website does not sell the accompanying book,
nor do they clearly state the novel's author. Although I later
discovered the author's name in the e-book text, I initially had
difficulty locating the correct book. And ultimately I had to contact
the e-book publisher to get the correct title and author information
before we could begin this nature study. It would have been helpful
to have the book and author information clearly documented on the
title page of the nature study e-book. However, once I had the
correct author information, I was delighted to find the book readily
available at our local library! The novel by Sterling North is
quite well written, and it's great that Orrin Street Press wrote
a nature study based on such excellent literature.
In all, I would recommend this study to others--especially for
families that need a little help stepping into the wonderful world
of nature study!