Nature Notes from Common Ground

Week of May 10, 2021

Bloodroot is blooming!

Big picture


Nature activity of the week

Nature Journals

A nature journal is a place to write and draw ideas about the nautral world. Nature journals can be a great way to record observations, create art, and reflect on experiences.

What do you need for a nature journal? Simple: paper and something to write or draw with. You could purchase a fancy book, use a spiral-bound notebook, use a composition book, or staple some pieces of paper together. Whatever works best for you and that you can carry with you is ideal for a nature journal.

How do you use a nature journal? There is no one right way! Write or draw what you see. Paint a picture. Write what you're thinking about as you are out in nature. You can also print photographs you take to include in a nature journal. For some children, it can help to offer a prompt. Here are some examples:

  • pick an item (such as a tree, a rock, a leaf); draw a picture of it and describe it in as much detail as you can (remember to use multiple senses!)
  • make a leaf rubbing
  • find a feather to tape into your journal
  • paint a picture of what you see
  • write about the best part of your adventure today
  • write down all the things you smell on your walk
  • describe the weather
  • tell a story about something you see (like an animal track, or a hole in a tree)

Nature journals allow children to be authors, give them a chance to think about their time outside, and provide a record of their outdoor experience.


Weekly Video

Dandelion Fritters


Hike of the Week

Bear Mountain

Each week we share a family-friendly hike or outdoor adventure. Click here for a hike up Bear Mountain!



We can’t wait to see you at our annual Seedling Sale! As the soil warms, we’re approaching the time to plant and grow food. Growing your own food is both a pleasure and a blessing — and we’d like to help. Check out the event page here for all the details!


The great smoothie slurp celebrates local Connecticut spring fruits, vegetables, and dairy! Schools can sign up to receive activity books and stickers for students.


About this series

Our programs for children at Common Ground are place based, hands on, and focus on community, friendship, and nature-based learning and play.

In this time of virtual learning and social distancing, we seek to support teachers and families in getting outside in safe and healthy ways. We hope this series provides content and activities to help your students or your family engage in nature-based learning, whether you are learning in person or virtually.

Some of the funding we rely on to keep Nature Notes free comes from the Robert F. Schumann Foundation and The Claire C. Bennitt Watershed Fund, established by the South Central CT Regional Water Authority.