How to Make a Nature Journal

This can be as simple as using a small notebook you already have or making one out of recycled materials.

To make a journal, use cereal box panels as covers; decorate with markers; or glue pictures from magazines or old calendars. Use plain paper or one-sided recycled paper. Punch holes in the covers and paper, and then connect together with yarn or string.

Please remember that these activities, especially for younger children, should be about the process, not the product. In other words, for young children, focus on the skills needed (using scissors, holding the crayons, etc.) instead of the final product. And most importantly, have fun!

  • Try to set aside a few minutes for your child to draw or write about something they saw in nature or questions they have about nature. This could be done after a walk around the neighborhood or after sitting on your porch or deck. 
  • Let your child decide what to draw or write about. This gives them the opportunity to start thinking and reasoning for themselves. If your younger child asks you to write a short caption to explain the drawing, always write it the way the child expressed it to you. Use the same words, grammar, and sentence structure. 
  • Periodically review what they have drawn/written in their journals. If they write in their journals after a walk, ask them how that area has changed since the last time they were there. Use the journal as a review and then talk about the differences. Spring is a great time of the year to see so many changes in nature. 

– Kelly Wehrheim
Public Programs Instructor

Leave a Reply