Nature Journaling #234: What Kind of Animal Would You Be?

Nature journals are a fun way to pass the time. To many Great Parks nature interpreters, they are a tool that fosters meaningful connections with the natural world.

Join us in keeping a nature journal throughout 2021. This is your journal – something to help you connect to the natural world around you and make discoveries along the way.

You can make note of certain things every day, like the temperature and weather conditions, and then work on the prompt we’ve given you. Or you can draw what you find during your nature observation time. Or a mixture of all of those things!

If the weather is too awful to go outside for your nature observation, take a peak out a window from the comfort of inside your home! If you do venture outside, you may want to take a small pocket notebook to make notes or quick sketches to work further with them when you get back inside. Also, use a pencil – ink in a pen could freeze if it is too cold! Any notebook will work for your journal.

A male northern cardinal sits on a tree branch. Its bright red feathers contrast against the gray sky in the background.
If you were a bird, would you puff out your feathers like cardinals do?

Today’s Prompt: What Kind of Animal Would You Be?

On a walk today, think about what kind of animal you would be if you could change into one. If the weather isn’t nice out for a walk, observe the animals you see outside through a window.

What would you eat if you were an animal? Where would you find shelter? How would you stay warm, grow more fur or puff out your feathers so that the air between your skin and feathers would act as an insulating blanket? Would you live with others that are like you or would you live alone?

A Few Tips for Success:

  • Work with your child’s attention span. If they aren’t enjoying an activity, allow them to choose a new one. If they are highly focused, give them plenty of time to continue the observations.
  • Allow creativity. Children often have interests that go beyond the questions we pose. Create a safe environment so they can create and explore on their terms.
  • Journal along with your child. You never know what you may discover and it’s a great way to spend some quality time together.
  • Try activities at different times of day. Observations may change with time and temperature.

Want to try your hand at different nature journaling topics? Click here for more prompts.