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:

Little Friends: Home Sweet Home: A Lift-the-Flap Book
Roger Priddy

Baby owl flies far and wide over forest, river, mountains and back to nest. Each scene has a colorful, illustrated natural habitat.

An Owl’s World
Ryan Nyberg

The author of this book wrote it at age 11. An engaging book, full of interesting facts: for example, it points out that the elf owl is so small it can perch on the end of a drinking straw.

Owl Moon
Jane Yolen, illus. John Schoenherr. Caldecott medal.

A not-to-be-missed classic mentioned here before and will be again. A little girl goes owling with her Pa on a cold, clear winter night.

For Adults:

The Enigma of the Owl: An Illustrated Natural History
Mike Unwin and David Tipling

An exploration of the diversity, beauty and ecological importance of owls.

Kids and Families
August/September 2017
Beginning Birder  |  Get Linked In

Audubon in the Library

Wildlife Wednesdays, 10:30 — 11:00 a.m. at the Freeport Library, 100 E. Douglas

Appropriate audience is two– to seven-year-olds

Ms. Juliet hosts a monthly series called Wildlife Wednesdays at the Freeport Public Library. Each month has a different theme related to nature and wildlife. She will read various books related to the theme and then show the children specimens that they can touch. There are also activities that can be done at home to continue the learning!

  • August 23: Dragonflies and Damselflies
  • September 6: Bees

Wildlife Wednesdays: Dragonflies, Damselflies, Bees

Kid’s Nature Hike

Oakdale Nature Preserve, 4433 S. Cranes Grove Rd.

Meet at the Mogle Center
Leader: Juliet Moderow

The autumn equinox is September 22. Let’s celebrate the first day of fall by being outside. We will take a hike around Oakdale and use nets and jars to collect insects along the way. Open to kids of all ages. Parents must be present with the children during the event.

Kids should dress appropriately for the weather (long pants recommended) and should wear waterproof shoes or boots that can get wet in case we look for aquatic organisms. Signups are required. Contact leader Juliet Moderow at 201-233-0946 to register and/or if weather is questionable. Meet in the parking lot near the Mogle Center by 10:00 a.m. Hike will start promptly on time.

Kid’s Nature Hike

Beginning Birder

Great Horned Owl
Bubo virginianus

Great Horned Owl “With its long, earlike tufts, intimidating yellow-eyed stare, and deep hooting voice, the Great Horned Owl is the quintessential owl of storybooks” (The Cornell Lab of Ornithology: All About Birds). This is one of our most common owls in North America and seems to be at home in lots of different places.

Fun Facts*

  • When clenched, the Great Horned Owls strong talons take a force of 28 pounds to open!
  • Do you ever hear a large group of American crows making a big noise and cawing? Take a closer look; they might be trying to mob a Great Horned Owl. They know that the owl is a one of their most dangerous predators.
  • They have lots and lots of very soft feathers which help to keep them warm in the winter but also to help them fly very quietly…almost no noise at all!
  • The large eyes of this bird have pupils that open widely in the dark and retinas with many rod cells that help them to have wonderful night vision, when they like to hunt.
  • They can swivel their heads more than 180 degrees to look in any direction. Can you do this?

* Information adapted from Cornell Lab of Ornithology site All About Birds.

Get Linked In

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

Read Owl Moon

Then go owling one night as the child and her Pa do. It’s worth breaking regular bedtime for one night – preferably on a night with no school the next day.

Celebrate the Autumnal Equinox

Have a fall-themed party, independent of football and Halloween. Just enjoy. Search the yard and neighborhood for signs of fall; notice which trees have leaves that have begun to turn. Choose some leaves that are still completely green, some that are partly green and partly colored, some that may be all colored; make a collage with these, showing the increments by which the colors begin to dominate the green.


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.


Saturday, Apr. 17, 2021
Annual Crane Count... >

Thursday, Apr. 22, 2021
Bird Walk: N. Jane Addams Trail and Orangeville Wetlands... >

Wednesday, Apr. 28, 2021
Bird Walk: Newell Tract, Oakdale Nature Preserve... >

Tuesday, May. 4, 2021
Zoom Program: Forest Park Owls: Hiding in Plain Sight... >