Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Walk Accomplished!

We made it out again today for a little walk before starting a sort of trial school day.  (We're officially beginning on Monday, but I need a few dress rehearsals to remind what I still need to do!)  Since we had luck with the flower garden in a neighbor's front yard last week, we ambled over there again today.  We also visited yesterday, but as it was raining, there was no wildlife to spot.

A cursory glance did not reveal any butterflies, but suddenly I noticed something bigger!  A small, bright yellow bird perched on a flower and nibbling at it!  I hushed the kids and tried to point it out quickly.  A few moments later it was gone.  Maggie (6 years) had seen it, Susannah (4 tomorrow) had not.  I promised I'd go home a look up a photo online.

I discovered many photos that looked like this little fellow:

From on the American Goldfinch page.
Then I wondered what the American Goldfinch sounded like and at the above website (, I found a place to listen to birdsong!  Lovely.

Now, maybe I was imagining it or just so unfamiliar with different birds' songs that I can't tell the difference, but a song that was quite similar to the American Goldfinch's kept wafting in the open window as we were sitting in our school room doing our math....

I'm really enjoying Charlotte Mason's focus on nature and especially becoming familiar with the plants and animals in your particular area.  How useful!  I feel so much more connected to my surrroundings just knowing a tiny bit about them.  That's a Maple, this is Queen Anne's Lace, we just saw a Red Admiral and an American Goldfinch!  The internet makes it so easy to identify the wildlife you see on a brief walk.  And of course Anna Botsford Comstock had something to say about it too.  And then there's plenty of fodder for the Nature Journal, which is just the first step into Science.

Oh, and for fun, I was going to add this video, too.  For some reason, this bird comes to this family's window every day and knocks!

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