Looking at our world through a window book

by Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. on April 11, 2012

in Children's Books, In My World, Nature Window Book, Science and Nature

One way to get kids to take a closer look at items in their world is to put it in window book. Something about being able to see through the window book makes the process quite interesting….

As part of our continued study to explore Earth Day, we read the book “In My World” by Lois Ehlert.  This is a very interesting book filled with all sorts of items from our world for the children to see. To take a closer look at our world, the children took a walk with their window books…

Our nature window books are simply made from two rectangular pieces of plexiglass (purchased from Lowes) with clear packing tape along one edge to hold the two pieces together…

After talking to the children about how to care for our window books and setting any rules that I felt might be necessary (like no running with the books), the children set off on a nature hike to find items to collect for their books…

Before heading out on their walk, I also talked with the children about what kinds of things would fit nicely in their window books (like leaves) and what kinds of things would not work well in the books (like rocks)…

Once the children had collected several items in their window books, we brought the window books back inside to take a closer look at what they had collected with magnifying glasses…

Oh, and that little blue thing in the middle of the table is actually a camera which I will share more about soon…

The children were able to take a close up look through their window books at the seeds from the flowers and we also found a spider that somehow happened to get caught in one of the window books as well – not sure where the spider ended up! Yikes…

After the children finished their exploration with window books, we cleaned out all the items, wiped down the window books, and saved our window books for another day…

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1 Shane April 11, 2012 at 8:14 pm

Those window books look pretty fun! My son and I haven’t explored down to the magnifying glass level yet… sounds like a good idea for this summer!

2 Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. April 11, 2012 at 11:39 pm

Would be great fun in the summer! We didn’t have too many flowers to choose from yet:)

3 Aimee April 11, 2012 at 9:55 pm

I did something similar with my class.
Instead of plexiglass I used the laminator we have at school to make sheets. So far all the plants have lasted 2 weeks with only a little color loss! Great to use on top of our light table. My kids love it and are always looking for more things outside to bring to me!

4 Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. April 11, 2012 at 11:39 pm

What a terrfic idea Aimee!! I love how the flowers hold most of their color too!

5 School Sparks Renee April 11, 2012 at 11:33 pm

Great idea. Did you make the window books or purchase them? Renee

6 Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. April 11, 2012 at 11:40 pm

Hi Renee,
I bought the plexiglass and then taped the edges of two pieces together to make a book using clear packing tape…

7 crystal@growingajeweledrose April 11, 2012 at 11:35 pm

I have never seen anything like this before. I love this idea!

8 Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. April 11, 2012 at 11:41 pm

Thank you Crystal:)

9 Mansi @Experimenting-mom April 12, 2012 at 6:51 am

Dear Deborah
These are wonderful. I was thinking of using the regular plastic jackets/ a jacket file for the same. But using flexiglass is a wonderful idea. These can also act as flower press by just putting a heavy book over it. or just framed for a wonderful nature display.
I am doing this for sure. Thanks for the better alternative!

10 Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. April 14, 2012 at 4:53 pm

I am so glad you liked the idea and have your own vision for all the possibilities!

11 Gina April 12, 2012 at 7:27 am

What a great idea! I love that they are able to really take the time and get an in depth look at everything that they collected. Sharing this on my facebook page! :)

12 Christie-Childhood 101 April 12, 2012 at 9:11 am

I love the window book idea, simply ingenious!

13 Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. April 14, 2012 at 4:49 pm

Thank you Christie:)

14 Scott April 12, 2012 at 1:32 pm

I don’t think I’ve mentioned it lately…you are one of my teaching heroes. Your continued inspiration makes me yearn to be in the classroom more. Thanks for sharing these awesome ideas.

15 Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. April 14, 2012 at 4:47 pm

Thank you Scott. That means a lot coming from you.

16 Amber April 12, 2012 at 2:16 pm

Very cool! I could see things being used in so many different ways…even for school agers.

17 Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. April 14, 2012 at 4:44 pm

I agree! School-agers would lOve this too!

18 Rebekah @ The Golden Gleam April 12, 2012 at 4:13 pm

This is an amazing idea, Deborah. I love how portable the arrangements can be. It reminds me of a Waldorf idea of taking empty picture frames outside to make temporary arrangements.

19 Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. April 14, 2012 at 4:42 pm

Yes, it is very much the same process only in a book type form.

20 Joyce @Childhood Beckons April 12, 2012 at 4:27 pm

Oh this is such a fantastic idea! I can’t tell you how excited I am about this. My little boy absolutely loves nature hikes and he will adore this activity. Thanks so much for sharing!

21 Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. April 14, 2012 at 4:41 pm

I am so glad you will share this process with your son:)

22 Jo April 12, 2012 at 5:07 pm

Love this idea!!! Thanks so much for sharing :)

23 Jennifer April 12, 2012 at 10:42 pm

This is a great way to enhance kids’ appreciation towards art and beauty. I would consider making one myself. I can imagine how excited the kids will be, knowing we are going to explore the park together and collect beautiful things.

24 Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. April 14, 2012 at 4:40 pm

Hi Jennifer!
The windows create a special interest in nature. Great for lots of outdoor exploration and discussion!

25 Little Feet Child Care April 13, 2012 at 2:58 am

Love this idea! Thanks for your time. I’ll be following your blog.

Little Feet Child Care

26 Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. April 14, 2012 at 4:37 pm

Thanks for following along!

27 Amanda April 13, 2012 at 8:45 pm

Thanks. I loved this idea and when I get back to work after my Easter school holidays I can’t wait to try it.

28 Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. April 14, 2012 at 4:35 pm

Enjoy the rest of your holiday!

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