My guys wanted to share with you their “Nature Museum.”
Their holdings include:
1. A wild hog skull (there’s also a bull skull that’s too large for the shelf)
2. Two deer skulls
3. Various moths and butterfles (most prominent in this photo are the Black Swallowtail to the left of the “3” and to the right (above) a Polyphemous moth and (below) a Black Witch moth.
4. A snake shed
5. A Paper Wasp nest
6. Several shells including the large southern quahog, the long white “angel wing” and the (almost too dark to see) sea beans, which aren’t shells at all, but were collected from the same beach.
7. A dragonfly (you can kind of see him if you look very closely)
8. A bird skull
9. Lots of little rocks, crystals, sweet gum balls, cicada sheds, seeds, etc.
10. A Leaf Footed Bug – that’s its real name.
11. A Praying Mantis sent to us by the wonderful Maya and sons.
12. Various land snail shells – the big ones are there on the shelf, the tiny ones are in the neighboring jar.
13. A fossil, alongside flint, quartz and calcite-coated limestone.
14. Deer antler sheds – you can see one there, there are a few more around, but they often get commandeered for costumes.
15. A White Lined Sphinx Moth chrysalide (inside the film canister)
16. A plaster cast of a deer track
17. A plaster cast of a raccoon track. (just fyi – there’s some basic information about learning to notice the signs that animals leave behind and also about making casts of tracks in our current Winter Book)
18. River rocks
19. Rock collections and the beginnings of a new beetle collection.
20. Feathers (pea hen and turkey vulture feathers are the ones that you can see here)
21. You can just see the edge of the fish tank. Not far away you’d find Shelly, the Hermit Crab.
22. Deer vertebrae
23. Another Southern Quahog shell
24. A Gulf Fritillary butterfly
25. Barely visible, but there nonetheless, a very much prized acquisition from a real nature science center, an African Porcupine quill.
And just below that quill, on the very last shelf, are their nature journals. My oldest two are each within just a few pages of finishing their “first volume.” That translates into over a year of looking, looking closer, researching, discovering, documenting, measuring, experimenting, photographing, drawing.. and in the end, growing in understanding, by leaps and bounds. Their knowledge of the natural world is surprising, but more importantly, the confidence that they have in their ability to dig deeper and find answers to their questions… it’s inspiring to me. Daily.
My youngest little man just got his first journal. He’s so, SO very proud of it.
The other two are eagerly awaiting the day that they get to head to the store and each purchase their “Volume 2.”
Me, I’m on the look out for more shelving for their museum… and I’m also looking very much forward to all the neat adventures that we’ll have filling up all those new crisp white nature journal pages.
Have a wonderful weekend y’all! I hope it affords you the chance to get outside and discover.