Nature's Book Nook

Many of these books can be found on PrairieCat; many are available for as little as 1 cent or 99 cents from booksellers on Amazon (with $3.99 for postage and handling).

For Kids:

For ages 3 to 7:

Tree: A Peek-Through Picture Book
Britta Teckentrup

Through a hole in the cover, an owl invites you to meet a forest tree and its inhabitants of every season.

The Tiny Seed
Eric Carle

The life cycle of a flower told through the adventures of a tiny seed. A good book as winter merges into spring and the tiny seed begins its cycle.

For Adults:

The Long, Long Life of Trees: What They Feel, How They Communicate
Fiona Stafford

A history of the interpretation of trees through art, literature, and even politics (the sycamore, for instance, was at the heart of England's first trade movement).

Kids and Families
February/March 2017
Beginning Birder  |  Get Linked In

AUDUBON IN THE LIBRARY

Wildlife Wednesdays, 10:30 — 11:00 a.m. at the Freeport Library

Appropriate audience is two– to seven-year-olds

An Audubon member hosts this monthly series at the Freeport Public Library. During the program, there is a special story time followed by an activity related to a theme.

Animal Courtship National Parks

Special National Parks Centennial Program

Friday, March 17, 3:30 to 4:30 p.m.

Freeport Public Library

Intended for older children – See the Feb./March newsletter on page 4 for more detailed information.

Celebrate the first day of spring by being outside! Juliet will provide binoculars for the kids to see which birds have returned to the area and also find resident birds. Dress for the weather. Sign-ups are encouraged – please use Facebook or call Juliet at 201-233-0946. Call if weather is questionable. Meet in the parking area of the Newell Tract, found on the west side of Cranes Grove Road.

Earth Day

Earth DaySaturday, April 22

SAVE THE DATE! … for an exciting earth day EVENT at Oakdale Nature Preserve.

More information will be provided in the next newsletter.

Beginning Birder

Golden-crowned Kinglet
Regulus satrapa

Golden-crowned Kinglet One of our tiniest birds, the golden-crowned Kinglet is able to survive in some very cold temperatures. This little bird usually nests in our northern forests but winters throughout much of the continent. It is usually found in very thick conifers, especially those of spruce, fir and hemlock. It likes pine groves like those planted in cemeteries and parks. This is a very active bird making it hard to spot high in the trees. It hops among the branches, often hanging upside down from the tips of twigs.

Cool Facts*

  • The female can lay a surprisingly large number of eggs, sometimes as many as 5 – 11!
  • The diet of these birds is mostly insects, including small beetles, gnats, caterpillars, aphids and others. It will also eat spiders and rarely feeds on fruit.
  • The adult male is a dull grayish olive above, paler whitish below and head boldly marked with yellow crown bordered broadly with Black. The orange color in center of yellow crown is visible only during display or when the bird is excited. The female does not have this yellow/orange crown.
  • One of the calls it makes sounds like a high jingling, tsii tsii tsii.
  • If you take a walk at Oakdale this winter and stand and listen for the calling, look up high in the trees and you just might be lucky enough to see this special little bird, hardly bigger than a hummingbird, flitting from branch to branch.

* Information adapted from Cornell Lab of Ornithology site animals.nationalgeographic.com and Audubon.org “Guide to North American Birds”.

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Children, Nature and You Resources to help you give the children you influence the awe and wonder that only the natural world can inspire

Freeport Park District Information on all the Freeport parks

Freeport Public Library More than books on a shelf...visit the Freeport Public Library

Freeport/Stephenson County Convention and Visitors Bureau Events located in Stephenson County, IL

Getting Kids Involved (The Cornell Lab of Ornithology) Includes bird information, tips, and more for kids and families

The Great Backyard Bird Count for Kids Sponsored by the Audubon Society and other partners

Jane Addams Recreation Trail Ride or Hike the beautiful Jane Addams Trail

Jane Goodall’s Roots and Shoots A program of the Jane Goodall Institute offering a variety of programs and resources

National Audubon website Use “Get Outside” and “Family Time” prompts

National Wildlife Federation Many family-friendly articles; Ranger Rick family magazine

Paddle the Pecatonica River Water Trail Enjoy Illinois’ “Friendliest Paddle” on the Pecatonica River

Resource Guide Supplement to Last Child in the Woods Designed for parents, teachers, and community leaders to help them encourage children’s enjoyment of the great outdoors.

Severson Dells Nature Center Located near Rockford, IL.

Sierra Club Outdoors The program's goal is to give every child in America an outdoor experience.

Family Activity

February can seem dreary, but conifers cheer us, giving us the gift of green against gray skies.

Take a walk noticing the different conifers in your yard and neighborhood. Collect some of the cones and needle clusters. Are the tops of the trees rounded or pointed? How are the needles of various conifers different? How might animals use conifers?

Kids and adults alike can hunker down with these two coloring books (or others); all that you learn in these can sharpen awareness when you then take them along on late winter walks.

Birdwatchers Coloring Book, Dover Nature Coloring Books.

A Walk in the Woods, Dover Nature Coloring Books. For all ages. The woods in all seasons are celebrated: includes the amazing life below pond ice and the early spring flowers.

Calendar

News
and Events

Check out our full calendar of activities, events, and educational opportunities. You're sure to find something to interest you. Please join us!

Events include:

  • Monthly educational programs and issues discussions
  • Local bird walks
  • Field trips
  • Preserve work days

For more details, see the current newsletter.

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Wednesday, Aug. 23, 2017
Wildlife Wednesday: Dragonflies and Damselflies... >

Tuesday, Sep. 5, 2017
NIAS Monthly Membership Meeting: History of the Upper Mississippi River... >

Wednesday, Sep. 6, 2017
Wildlife Wednesday: Bees... >

Saturday, Sep. 9, 2017
Field Trip: Amboy Marsh... >