USA NPN National Phenology Network

Taking the Pulse of Our Planet

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Educators around the country are developing materials to use with Nature's Notebook.

Image credit:
Brian Powell

Nature's Notebook Curriculum & Activities

Explore Nature's Notebook materials created by the National Coordinating Office Staff and partners.

Title Description
Summarizing Observation Records by Participant

The resource walks the user through the creation of a PivotTable to determine which users in a group have submitted data, on what date, for which species. 

USA-NPN Education Publication Number: 2014-001-T

Getting Started with Nature's Notebook in the Classroom

This four page document is a guide to getting started with Nature's Notebook in your classroom. It includes tips for planning links to our webpages, directions on how to get started, and PRO TIPS for implementation. 

USA-NPN Education Publication Number: 2014-015-C

Habitat Scavenger Hunt

The following lesson can be used as an introduction to the concept of observation. Observations skills are critical to the field of science among other things! Knowing how to pay attention to what’s is going on around you is an important life skill. Taking the time to make observations is beneficial to health and wellness too.  It also introduces the concept of phenology through the observation of plants and animals in a habitat garden. The activity increases science literacy by teaching about observation skills, encourages people to pay attention to their surroundings, to spend more time outdoors and observe things they may not yet have experienced. 

USA-NPN Education Publication Number: 2014-013-C

Phenology Bingo

The following activity can be used as an introduction to the concept of phenology. The items on the phenology board are phenomena that participants have observed in nature, perhaps without even knowing their relationship to ecology, science, and climate, or their status as phenological events. Maybe they are fond childhood memories. The activity increases science literacy by teaching about life-cycle events, encouraging people to recall experiences outdoors and spend more time observing things they may not yet have experienced. It can be adapted to any grade level.

USA-NPN Education Publication Number: 2014-010-C

Observation Station

The following activity can be used as an introduction to the concept of observation. Observations skills are critical to the field of science, among other things! Knowing how to pay attention to what’s is going on around you is an important life skill. Taking the time to make observations is beneficial to health and wellness too. The activity increases science literacy by teaching about observation skills, encourages people to pay attention to their surroundings, to spend more time outdoors and observe things they may not yet have experienced. It can be adapted for any grade level.

USA-NPN Education Publication Number: 2014-012-C

The Life of Corn

The following activity can be used as an introduction to the concept of phenology. It demonstrates the life cycle of a corn plant, a plant familiar to many, putting this plant into a new perspective. The Life of Corn highlights the importance of the developmental life-cycle, something which all organisms experience in a predictable manner. The activity increases science literacy by teaching about life-cycle events, encourages people not only to recall experiences outdoors but also to spend more time outdoors and observe things they may not yet have experienced. This activity was adapted from Dandelion Life, presented by NatureBridge.  It is adapatable to all grade levels.

USA-NPN Education Publication Number: 2014-014-C

Making Basic Phenology Observations

The following activity is meant as an introduction to phenology, the study of recurring plant and animal life cycle stages. Students make scientific observations of plants and record their observations and record them for Nature's Notebook.

USA-NPN Education Publication Number: 2014-011-C

Volunteer Training Course Phenology Notes Worksheet

**Editable

This worksheet can be used in a Master Naturalist or Master Gardener course as an assignment to track phenology throughout the subject areas presented.  Students can make notes each week during lectures and presentations about how phenology informs most, or all, of the subjects presented as part of the training course. 

Because the form is editable, it can also be used in other volunteer training programs.  

Phenology Word Searches

These word searches can be used as activities in the classroom or in an informal setting.  The first, suitable for younger grades, contains six words to find and corresponding questions.  The second has a list of words to find. 

Adult Local Phenology Leader - Phenology Monitoring Program Planning Guide - with Outcomes

This worksheet has been used in teacher training workshops and in docent training courses.  The purpose is to provide some guidelines for planning a phenology monitoring program at your site.  It includes guiding information on how to develop a science question and space to plan short-medium-long term goals for a phenology monitoring program. It also offer space to brainstorm some activities that may be plugged in to achieve these programmatic outcomes.  

**NOTE: The framework for this guide is for an educator/leader-centered program and not for individual student outcomes and achievements during a short semester or academic year.  Rather, the planning should include mulitple years of phenology monitoring, ideas for collaboration with colleagues and other community organizations in support of answering a scientific reasearch question related to phenology and/or climate change.

USA-NPN Education Publication Number: 2014-007-C (2014-007-CSP - Spanish)

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