The Big Book of Nature Activities: A Year-Round Guide to Outdoor Learning

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9780865718029: The Big Book of Nature Activities: A Year-Round Guide to Outdoor Learning
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The average child can identify over one thousand corporate logos, but only ten native plants or animals—a telling indictment of our modern disconnection from nature. Soaring levels of obesity, high rates of ADHD, feelings of stress and social awkwardness, and "Nature Deficit Disorder" are further unintended consequences of a childhood spent primarily indoors.

The Big Book of Nature Activities is a comprehensive guide for parents and educators to help youth of all ages explore, appreciate and connect with the natural world. This rich, fully illustrated compendium features:

Nature-based skills and activities such as species identification, photography, journaling, and the judicious use of digital technology Ideas, games, and activities grounded in what's happening in nature each season Core concepts that promote environmental literacy, such as climate change and the mechanisms and wonder of evolution, explained using a child-friendly, engaging approach Lists of key species and happenings to observe throughout the year across most of North America

Perfect for families, educators, and youth leaders , The Big Book of Nature Activities is packed with crafts, stories, information and inspiration to make outdoor learning fun.

Jacob Rodenburg is the Executive Director of the Camp Kawartha summer camp and outdoor education centre. As well as publishing numerous articles on children, nature and the environment, he has worked in the field of outdoor education for twenty-five years.

Drew Monkman is an award-winning environmental advocate, naturalist, and retired teacher. In addition to his weekly nature column, Drew is the author of two season-based nature guides, including Nature's Year.

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From the Back Cover:


Go outside and play!


A seasonal guide to activities, information, stories, and games to take learning outside


These are the understandings humans have passed down over hundreds of generations; now we need to make a conscious effort to ensure our kids can understand and enjoy the gorgeous world around them ― Bill McKibben, author, Long Distance and Eaarth


The Big Book of Nature Activities is a welcome book that should be a bible for all adults and children eager to rediscover the very source of our health, joy, and spiritual connection. ― David Suzuki, science broadcaster and environmental activist

The average North American child can identify over 300 corporate logos, but only 10 native plants or animals―a telling indictment of our modern disconnection from nature. The Big Book of Nature Activities is a comprehensive guide for parents, grandparents, caregivers, and teachers to help youth of all ages explore, appreciate, and connect with the natural world. This rich, fully illustrated compendium features:


  • Nature-based skills and activities such as species identification, photography, journaling, and the judicious use of digital technology
  • Ideas, games, and activities grounded in what’s happening in nature each season
  • Core concepts that promote environmental literacy, such as climate change and the mechanisms and wonder of evolution, explained using a child-friendly, engaging approach
  • Lists of key species and happenings in nature to observe throughout the year across most of North America.


    Perfect for families, educators, and youth leaders, The Big Book of Nature Activities is packed with crafts, stories, information, and inspiration to make outdoor learning fun.

    This book provides a wealth of ideas for adults to engage children and themselves in the wonders of the natural world with suggested activities for all seasons. Nature is magic. And nature is free.
    ― Robert Bateman, artist


    The Big Book of Nature Activities will be a great resource for all of us who work with children.
    ― Jackie Ostfeld, Nearby Nature Director, Sierra Club

  • About the Author:

    Jacob Rodenburg is the Executive Director of Camp Kawartha, an award winning summer camp and outdoor education centre which uses music, drama, hands-on exploration, games and activities to inspire awe and wonder for the local environment. He teaches part time at Trent University, where he spearheaded the development of an Eco Mentor” certificate program for teacher candidates which was subsequently adopted by several other universities. As well as publishing numerous articles on children, nature and the environment, Jacob has worked in the field of outdoor education for 25 years and recently received the Ontario Society of Environmental Educators Award for Leadership in Environmental Education”.

    Drew Monkman is an award-winning environmental advocate, and former board member of the Camp Kawartha summer camp and outdoor education centre. A retired elementary school teacher, Drew’s interest in integrating nature activities and environmental education into all areas of the curriculum led him to oversee the development of an outdoor classroom which went on to become a model for many similar projects throughout North America. In addition to writing a weekly nature column, Drew is the author of several almanac-style environmental books including Nature’s Year and Nature’s Year in the Kawarthas. (www.drewmonkman.com)

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