We don't get to nature study as much as I would like, but we are trying. I simply adore the Outdoor Hour challenges from the Handbook Of Nature Study blog. The challenges utilize the book Handbook of Nature Study by Anna Botsford Comstock, which is available for free online.
We also do a lot of reading about animals found in our area. We really enjoy books by Thornton W. Burgess (The Burgess Bird Book for Children, The Burgess Animal Book for Children, and Mother West Wind's Children are favorites.)
We've been focusing this year on the Burgess Bird Book for Children, as scheduled for year 1 by Ambleside Online (more about this free online curriculum in another post, coming soon!) To go along with it, I found these awesome cards that I can't seem to find online again! lol Isn't that the way it always goes? I'll try to find them again and post them, because they are awesome. Also, from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology there is a coloring book that has some of the birds in it.
A book that we discovered at the thrift store yesterday instantly became a favorite; it is Feathers For Lunch by Lois Ehlert. We sat down a few minutes ago to read the story together and Nik said, "I can read this one!" So he did read it, and with very little help. It has illustrations of some common birds and lists their names and shows the sounds they make.
We also had an opportunity to observe some non-native birds when we pet-sat some parakeets for my cousin, a fellow homeschooler. The birds go home today, and we're very sad to see them go. Jay-Jay (the jet plane) and Twilight gave us many hours of fun and allowed us to observe birds up-close. Mom and Dad might just have to buy themselves some birds as a Christmas present to ourselves. ;-)