Apr 18, 2009

Outdoor Hour - Autumn tree study

For this week's Outdoor Hour we continued with the studies in the order they were written - meaning we're up to #3 (starting to draw) - and we took Barb's advice and incorporated study #36 - the seasonal tree study.

Miss5 chose the ornamental cherry tree that we can see from our living room window. This is a great tree for climbing, and is also where we hang the bird feeders in winter, so is one of the girls' favourite trees. The aim is to follow the tree through the year and note how it responds to the changing seasons.

It was a beautiful Autumn day, and we spent most of the morning outside soaking up the warm (but not hot) sun, and using all of our senses to study the tree and its surrounds.
Miss5 even drew a picture of the tree in our nature book! Usually she refuses to draw, as her perfectionism rears its head, and she wants to colour in an outline that I have drawn. Which is completely fine - we all do new things when we feel confident enough to try. I usually make some comment about it being her drawing, and not to worry too much if it isn't quite how she wants it to look in her head - which she usually completely ignores and simply re-states her position that I should draw it and she should colour it in. Which is what we usually do, since I don't want it to turn into a big "issue" - it's hardly the end of the world if she doesn't draw things free-hand! As Anna Botsford Comstock says, no child should be compelled to keep a nature journal.

So I was pleasantly surprised when she decided to draw her own picture of the tree this week. If I recall correctly (it was some days ago now), she said something along the lines of "everyone is bad at something when they first start learning, aren't they Mum?", which I gently reassured her was correct - and that the important thing was to enjoy what you're doing, and the more often you do it the better you become.

1 comment:

Barb-Harmony Art Mom said...

What a successful start to your tree study! I am really happy to hear about the breakthrough for your daughter and her tree drawing.

Journals are something that become special to our children and as long as you stress that nature journals are a place to record your time in nature, it seems to take the pressure off. Remind your daughter that when you draw in your nature journal that it isn't the same as an art lesson. There are no wrong answers. :)

Your family looks like they are really enjoying their outdoor time.

Thanks for the link,
Barb-Harmony Art Mom

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