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Suggestions for a naturalist


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My 5 year old is really into animals and nature. Not sure where the bounds are exactly. I think he's had every field guide in the house read to him cover to cover as a bed time story, with Latin name and classification as well as length/height/weight details left in. He's moving on to adult non-fiction. One Wild Bird At A Time was his book which he listened to several times before he was ready to share it with the family and let the other kid hear it. Fortunately the author has several more books that can keep him busy for a while, but I was just wondering if anyone had great ideas or suggestions that we should put on the list. I honestly don't have time to pre-read or pre-listen to everything that looks like it might be somewhat interesting for him so I am taking the easy route and asking for help :) Scientific discussion of reproduction is fine, but adult humor slipped into discussions is not.


As always, I appreciate any help and am so grateful for this board.

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My Family and Other Animals is really good.


I'd also suggest a cheap digital camera (or cell phone with no SIM card) so he can start photographing and identifying (catch/release or in situ). The good news is that even urban areas have a lot of animals to add to life lists-especially if you include invertebrates. Add plants and fungi, and you can stay busy for quite awhile. Try to keep the animals out of your house as long as you can :).


Dover coloring books are really good-and not at all dumbed down. My daughter also sketches her findings (a very old-school set of skills).

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This came across my facebook feed a while back.  It's a monthly club where you get a print magazine and have challenges to complete to earn badges.  Maybe it's something he'd enjoy?  http://www.wildexplorersclub.com/


Thanks! Actually my local homeschool group has a meet up every week to work on that. I was sort of on my radar but I hadn't had a chance to look into it yet. That might be great for us. 


You might want to look through this thread.

Thank you!! Great suggestions in there, and then a few more that got added today :)  I see your kid went through a similar phase a couple years ago. We love the Among the People books too but there is a time for that and a time to branch out. 




Can I hijack my own thread for a tiny vent?  My mom is staying with us. She mostly keeps her mouth shut on homeschooling things because she and all her sisters were public school teachers. We have pretty different ideas about education. Anyway.. as I was offhandedly discussion some things I was looking at for DS5, she told me that she thinks he'd be less intense if, instead of adult books, he had more Rafi and kid appropriate things to listen to.   :banghead:   He is a super intense kid.. he just does everything BIG. I am a huge believer in fairy tales and we do have LOTS of "age appropriate" (whatever that really means) things for him. I feel like I need to justify *why* he's super intense and point out all the beautiful things his intensity brings. He has a genuinely sweet heart, a crazy maniacal laugh when he learns something new that just warms your heart and makes him a joy to talk to. And yes, he has tantrums and lots of anger, and he and his two year old brother have a really hard time together... but he's a young 5. Everyone expects so much from him. He does so much, and they still expect more and I just want to cry for him :(


tldr; just the bold.

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  • 1 month later...

My nature-loving son absolutely loved all of the Thornton Burgess books when he was young. They are fiction stories with animals as characters, but so much about the natural world/habitats was interwoven into the stories. Many of them are just short little stories, but three of them are longer: The Burgess Animal Book, Seashore Book, and Bird Book. My son read them over and over. Keeping a simple nature journal is also a really fun family activity.

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