Summer Trees: Nature Study Lesson Plan

We study trees all throughout the year – partly because my husband is a forester and trees are a big part of our lives (they’re like family!), but also because there’s just SO much to learn about!

So here, I present to you, our favorite resources for learning about trees.

Tree Nature Study Resources

This week we focused on dead trees, which are actually teeming with life! There are so many insects, mammals, birds, fungi, and plants that make their home among dead trees. We love searching the old cottonwoods for signs of life, and are delighted when we find them. We also used the summer trees unit from The Summer Journal (listed in my shop!)

It’s nice having these extra resources ~ like coloring pages and journaling/activity prompts ~ but feel free to just use a simple blank journal. Simply drawing or painting the trees you see in your yard and on nature walks is a great way for your little ones to study trees.

Hands-On Fun

Leaf Prints

Here’s a simple, fun way to play with leaf shapes ~ gather leaves from the trees in your yard, cover the undersides with paint (making sure to cover the veins completely), then carefully press them down on sturdy paper. You can also look up the species and label them, making your own backyard tree reference guide!

I was shocked to see how many different tree species we have in our smallish, suburban yard ~ there were several more we couldn’t fit on this sheet, so we will have to make another!

You can also press the leaves you find and your kids can add them to their nature notebooks!

symmetrical art with leaves 3

Leaf Symmetry

Here’s another fun activity to do with leaves – leaf symmetry! Just cut the leaves you collected in half and practice drawing the missing half. Read more about this activity here.

Third Grade Math Activities: How Old is That Tree?

How Old is That Tree?

Have you ever looked at a massive tree and wondered, “how many years has that tree been here?” Well, you can learn how to find out how old trees are with this free activity.

Picture Books

It Starts With a Seed

Learn more about trees in The Summer Journal, a guided nature journal and nature study curriculum with over 50 pages of illustrated field guides, journaling prompts, activities, coloring pages and more.

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