Friday, June 29, 2012

Beaches, Beaches, Everywhere!

The Handbook of Nature Study's Outdoor Hour Challenge was beach-themed for the month of June. Here in New England, the water is a little chilly early in June, so we have waited (until now) to entertain plunging in (despite our incredibly hot air temperatures).

Big Clyde says, "Life's a beach..."
As we are planning for our first beach trip next week, we have been going over the things we have been studying in our other homeschool studies, and realized that beaches were in all of them!

  • The Swiss Family Robinson, our summer read-aloud, is taking us into exploration of life on a tropical island. I've been looking for my Hawaii photos to help us out... We are creating a theme basket which includes books on the plant and animal life on a tropical beach.
  • An independent project on WWII has brought us to Hawaii (yet again!), for a study of the bombing of Pearl Harbor in 1941...
  • Learning about the geography of Japan has been teaching us about islands as a land form, and beaches as part of the geology cycle.


In preparation for writing about our findings, I have begun assembling a Pinterest board with all kinds of links to nature studies and notebooking resources for beach work. Did you know that, if you Google "beaches notebooking," you get over 21,500 image hits? I am having great fun checking out what other beach lovers have shared. Given the number of projects we have underway that are connected to beaches, I'm sure that we will be visiting this board, and adding to it, quite often!


Here is a nature study from last summer based on a beach trip to Ocean Beach, New London, Connecticut, and a jarful of shark's teeth mailed to us from Grandma in Florida: Beachcombing, Part I: Shark Teeth. Stay tuned for Beachcombing, Part II after our beach visit next week! (We'll be sure to take our beach pages from the OHC with us...).


Other things on our list of homeschool activities for the week (and links we're using):

Friday: Watermelon Sorbet - we're in the middle of this one right now, as a garden/nature study connection to summer, beaches, tropical weather and all things June...
Saturday: Tie-dying - we bought a kit at Wal-Mart, and I'm gathering white t-shirts today for a weekend of colorful fun
Sunday: Continued work on our Child Training Bible
Monday: Pearl Harbor videos - for our history study of Japan and WWII
Tuesday: A trip to the library for books about Japan, WWII and Hawaii
Wednesday: Cherry blossom art - this is so cool (I'll buy frames and paints this weekend). I'm not sure how we'll exhibit the art, but here are ideas: Rainbow Family Room and Jewel Tones in the Living Room
Thursday: Not sure yet, but I'll look over my Making Math Meaningful board for ideas...


One of those days (or maybe two!) will definitely be a beach day, so we'll look over Life's a Beach for ideas after the trip, and save whatever we don't do for another day.


Don't you just love summer homeschool?

----------------------------------------------------


[This blog post is featured on the June 2012 Edition of the Outdoor Hour Challenge. Come check out other posts on bees, beaches, and other summer topics -- great ideas for summer nature study and homeschool work!]

Waikiki Beach, from www.aloha.com