mystery The answer to the clues may be found at the bottom of this column.    Teachers and Parents: Enter to win an entire set of Dawn’s nature books of one title for your home or classroom. It's fun and easy!
Just read the clues below. They describe an aspect of nature—a plant, animal, mineral, habitat, or natural process.
When you're ready to make your guess about who or what I am, click ENTER NOW.
Who Am I?
spacerglass1 Clue 1:  I'm a member of the "dog family."
glass1 Clue 2:  I live throughout North America in deserts, prairies, forests, and even in towns and cities.
glass1 Clue 3:  You might hear me howling at night to communicate with my pack.
glass1 Clue 4:  Don't let me trick you—I am NOT a wolf.
Do you think you know who I am? ENTER NOW.
Entries should be submitted no later than noon on Friday.
If you guessed correctly, you’re automatically entered into the monthly drawing for a set of nature books from Dawn Publications.
A contest winner will be announced at the end of September.
Throughout the school year, clues for a new Who Am I are posted no later than Sunday night, so you can use them with your class on Monday morning.Good luck!
The answer to last week's mystery was: SEASHELLS Although Inside Outside Nature blog is changing it's focus, this weekly "Who Am I?" will remain the same! Teachers, click here to get ideas about how to use the contest with your students.  

Gone Fishing

gone_fishing_signHis grin spread wide across his face as he proudly displayed his big catch. My eight-year-old nephew had just caught a 26 inch Northern Pike in the river that flows by our Michigan cottage.


I definitely agree with the co-author of the Earth Keepers series, Michael J. Caduto when he says:

Children possess an innate connection to wild things in wet places.

My nephew’s afternoon on the river was filled with first-hand science lessons about fresh water habitats, food chains, life cycles, river currents, and respect for all life. Although the most significant lesson for him was that being outside is fun and exciting.

Not every child can go on a fishing adventure, but the books about fishing that I’ve highlighted in this week’s blog will ignite children’s imaginations so they will feel the thrill of goin’ fishin’.

 INSIDE: This is the Sea That Feeds Us

SEA_StoreWritten in verse, This is the Sea that Feeds Us introduces the marine food chain through a little girl who spends a day at the beach. Like waves breaking on the shore, the book’s repeating rhymes delight the ear.

The unsung heroes of this story are the plankton who do one of the biggest jobs in the world. “Nothing would live in the oceans if there were no phytoplankton.”

Using the illustrations in the story, have students create mobiles of the salt water food chain. Find directions for creating simple mobiles here. You may also have your class do the experiment “Salt Water Taste and Freeze” from Keepers of the Earth.

OUTSIDE: Salmon Stream

SALMN_COVERAgainst staggering odds, salmon eggs hatch and grow, travel to the ocean, and eventually struggle upstream to their birthplace again to spawn a new generation. In Salmon Stream the life cycle of salmon unfolds in cumulative verse and children learn, “We need salmon and salmon need us to take care of rivers, oceans, and streams.

Play  Salmon Life Cycle Pantomime outside to give children a kinesthetic experience about what it feels like to be a salmon.

BTW: I’ve just recorded This is the Sea That Feeds Us and Salmon Stream (and several others) for Dawn’s ebook collection. Ask your school or district librarian about how you can access them.


61fqOrdSHsL._SX258_PJlook-inside-v2,TopRight,1,0_SH20_BO1,204,203,200_Storyteller Brian “Fox” Ellis retells his own fishing experience as a child in The Web at Dragonfly Pond. Along the way he learns, “Inside me is the hum of the dragonfly’s wing, the croak of the frog, and the splah of the large mouth bass.”


ORIV_SHOP-150x150Over in the River delights young children with rhymes, songs, and hidden critters. It also presents information about North American rivers and the animals that live in and around them.