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Nature's Notebook Activities
Explore Nature's Notebook materials created by the National Coordinating Office Staff and partners.
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|Needs Assessment Worksheet||
Needs assessments are an important element of developing a site-based long-term phenology monitoring program. Thinking through the reasons you wish to utilize Nature’s Notebook for natural resource management, scientific, or educational purposes will help you to develop something sustainable. Even better would be to identify researchers, land managers, educators, or outreach providers in your community to collaborate on a monitoring program. If you are a researcher or land manager, reach out to educators who can help you recruit and train people to collect the data you need to answer your questions and make better decisions. If you are an educator, find a researcher or land manager who may find data you collect with your participants of value.
For more information about the process and to share your form with the National Coordinating Staff, visit the Needs Assessment webpage.
USA-NPN Education Resource Number: 2017-002-C
|Ideas to Engage Your Volunteers||
Do you manage a group of volunteers who are regularly collecting Nature's Notebook observations for your Local Phenology Program? To keep people engaged and interested in monitoring for a period of a year or more, make sure to keep it interesting and provide them with opportunities to get together with each other, share what they are observing, and socialize. This tip sheet includes ideas for keeping your monitoring program fresh and engaging so volunteers will continue to be excited about returning to make their observations.
USA-NPN Education Resource Number: 2017-001-W
|Short Introductory Slide Decks||
This series of introductory slide decks can be edited for your use in Nature's Notebook workshops or other presentations.
Voice-over videos of the slide decks can be found here.
USA-NPN Education Resource Number: 2016-001-W
|Basic Botany & Intensity Quizzes||
This is an interactive, online series of quizzes designed to help you better identify phenophases and understand the intensity protocols contained within Nature's Notebook.
USA-NPN Education Resource Number: 2016-002-OC
|2016 UArizona Insect Festival Tabling Materials||
This activity was set up on two 6 foot tables. We utilized four stereo microscopes (dissecting microscopes; a 10x and a 30x lens on a turret) across one table. On each microscope we displayed a life cycle stage of the giant swallowtail butterfly (Papilio cresphontes): a few eggs on a citrus leaf, a live caterpillar in a petri dish with a leaf, an empty chrysalis, and a pinned adult butterfly. We also included a butterfly habitat with several live adult butterflies - a swallowtail and a few queen butterflies, and a milkweed in bloom for a nectar resource. Additionally, we had samples of citrus plants and a variety of P. cresphontes instars available for display.
The worksheet for the microscope was designed for students to record what they observed through the scope, either by drawing it or circling the life cycle stage that they viewed.
The second datasheet was for older students who were interested in reading the caterpillar phenophase definitions and circling the details exhibited by the captive caterpillars.
We also provided information about Nature's Notebook, the local Tucson Phenology Trail and sites, displayed information for teachers, including curriculum materials, and had a sign up sheet for more information.
The event was from 11 am until 4 pm. There were about 250 youth who visited our table with their parents. The average age for the visitors was 3-5 years of age, although there were elementary age youth as well (grades 1-4). To a lesser degree there were middle school age youth (grades 5-6).
|How to use the Observation Deck's Phenology Calendars||
Learn how to customize your own Phenology Calendars that appear on your Observation Deck. These calanders visually represent data you have collected and allow you to compare up to three species' phenophases at a time. They can be saved as a file, or set to automatically load each time you come to your Observation Deck.
USA-NPN Education Resource Number: 2016-004-T
|Guiding tips for setting up an outdoor Nature's Notebook site||
This tip sheet can be referenced when setting up a new Nature's Notebook observation site in the outdoors. The content is from the monitoring guidelines established by the USA-NPN, and can also be found on the Our Reports Page in the How to Observe Handbook (EE-2013-001) Resource. The content begins on page 7, Section 2a. Choose a Site through page 14, Section 2b. Choose Plant and Animal Species.
USA-NPN Education Resource Number: 2014-006a-C; 2014-006a-CSP - Spanish
|Sample Nature's Notebook Higher Education Semester-Long Program||
These are examples of Nature's Notebook semester-long program implementation plans for 3 different university level courses, in different departments, with different outcomes. Each engages students in making observations using Nature's Notebook for 4-8 weeks during the semester.
These resources were shared courtesy of Dennis Rosemartin, Assistant Professor, Department of Childhood Education and Care, Salem State University; Lisa Parce, Lecturer/Curriculum Specialist, Department of Agriculture Education, University of Arizona; and Rachel Gallery, Assistant Professor, School of Natural Resources and the Environment, University of Arizona. Questions can be directed to the USA-NPN Education Coordinator, firstname.lastname@example.org.
View other examples of activities and lessons for higher education on our Higher Education Landing page.
Interested in learning about how to set up your monitoring program to meet your course needs? Visit our Start a Local Program page for more information.
|Nature's Notebook Mobile Application Tip Sheet||
The Nature's Notebook Mobile App Module in our Observer certification course goes over the use of our mobile application for setting up your Nature's Notebook account and submitting observations from your mobile device. This module should take 20-30 to minutes to complete. This is the second module in a series of online learning modules available for Nature's Notebook, and completing all of them will earn you a "Certified Observer" status in our database.
We have released a new mobile app for using Nature’s Notebook in the field - download it from Apple App Store or the Google Play Store! Note when searching for the app in the store: the new app version's icon is blue, as pictured here, rather than the old app, which has a yellow icon.
If you downloaded a beta version for testing purposes, please uninstall it and get the newest release from the app stores.
For assistance using the app, view the step by step help document.
Once you've downloaded the app you will be promped to login using your Nature's Notebook account.
If you made changes to your account using a computer, and do not see them on your new version of the app, open the app, and from the "Review" tab, click the button at the bottom for "Sync". After a few moments, your mobile device will update with the new account information and you will have access to the changes you made on the computer from your mobile device.
If you have the older version of the app (pre-June 15, 2019), consider transitioning to using the new app. Please check that your observations have been uploaded before moving over to using the new app. We will no longer be offering support for the old app after December 16, 2019.
Happy (mobile) Observing!
|Phenology Activity Book for Children||
This activity book is designed for youth ages 4-12. It includes a variety of activites related to the study of phenology, or life cycle events of plants and animals, which can be used on their own or together. An answer key is provided as a seperate file.