The Big Book of Nature Activities

The Big Book of Nature Activities

The Big Book of Nature Activities

A Year-round Guide to Outdoor Learning

ISBN 978-0-86571-802-9

“…for parents, grandparents, caregivers, and teachers to help youth of all ages – as well as adults – explore, appreciate and connect with the natural world”

~ Nature-based skills and activities such as species identification, photography, journaling and the judicious use of digital technology
~ Crafts, games, explorations and projects based on what’s happening in nature each season
~ Core concepts that promote environmental literacy, such as climate change, why we have seasons, phenology and the mechanisms and wonder of evolution – explained in a child-friendly, engaging approach
~ Lists of key species and happenings in nature to observe throughout the year across most of North America
~ Suggestions of Citizen Science projects for both children and adults
~ Endorsements from David Suzuki (science broadcaster, environmental activist), Robert Bateman (artist), Bill McKibben (, author of Long Distance and Eaarth) and Jackie Ostfeld (Nearby Nature Director, Sierra Club)

~ Winner of four book awards, including the Nautilus which is a major American book award whose previous winners include Barbara Kingsolver, Jeremy Rifkin, The Dalai Lama and Thich Nhat Hanh

SILVER MEDAL WINNER Moonbeam Children's Book Awards 2016

Moonbeam Children’s Book Awards

2017 Green Book Festival – WINNER in Childrens category

A 2016 Foreword INDIES Book Awards finalist
for Nature (Nonfiction)







Nautilus Book Awards – DOUBLE GOLD medal winner for Animals and for Nature – 2016-2017







Activities from Big Book are featured in the November 2017 issue of Woman’s Day magazine

Activities from Big Book in Woman’s Day




  • New Society Publishers, June 2016
  • 384 pages, Paperback
  • $39.95 US/CAN
  • Purchase from following suppliers:
  • Happenstance Books and Yarns, 44 Queen Street, Lakefield, ON (705-652-7535)
  • Chapters Peterborough, 873 Lansdowne Street, Peterborough, ON (705-740-2272)
  • From authors: and

For a detailed description of  “The Big Book of Nature Activities”, CLICK HERE

For a Look Inside the book, including the Contents and Introduction, CLICK HERE

You can listen to Jacob and I being interviewed about the book on the “EARTHWORMS” podcast with Jean Ponzi.

Book review (August 4, 2016) from TREEHUGGER

Chosen a 2017 Top Ten Summer Read by PETERBOROUGH GREENUP


CBC Montreal interview with host Shari Okeke - Broadcast August 13, 14 & 21, 2016

Three-part CBC Montreal interview with host Shari Okeke – Broadcast August 13, 14 & 21, 2016










Nature’s Year

Changing Seasons in Central and Eastern Ontario

ISBN 978-1-45970-183-0

  • Dundurn, April 2012
  • 200 pages, Paperback

Go to Google Books to take a look inside Nature’s Year

Nature’s Year is an almanac of key events in nature occurring in Central and Eastern Ontario, a region that extends from the Bruce Peninsula and Georgian Bay in the west to Ottawa and Cornwall in the east. The book is a chronicle of the passing seasons designed to inform cottagers, gardeners, photographers, suburban backyard birders, and nature enthusiasts alike as to what events in nature to expect each month of the year.

Whatever your interest may be — birds, mammals, amphibians, reptiles, fish, invertebrates, plants, fungi, weather, or the night sky — just turn to a given month and you’ll find a list of what’s happening, often right in your own backyard. This book will also provide a reassuring measure of order and predictability to nature and help the reader become more attentive to and appreciative of the many wonders of the natural world that surround us in this exceptional region of Ontario.


Book: Natures YearNature’s Year in the Kawarthas

A Guide to the Unfolding Seasons

  • ISBN: 978-1-89621-980-6
  • Dundurn, November 2002
  • 338 pages, Paperback

A preview of this book is available through Google Books

Nature’s Year in the Kawarthas is an almanac of key events occurring in the natural world over the course of a year in the Kawartha Lakes district – and in cottage country in general. Covering all areas of our flora and fauna as well as weather and the night sky, the book is a month-by-month chronicle of the mileposts of the passing seasons. From the raucous Spring Peeper chorus of April .. through the sweet scent of milkweed blossoms in July .. and the early-morning mists of September .. to the arrival of the first eagles in December – all are noted for your interest.

Whenever you head out on your next walk or look up at the stars, Nature’s Year will be your informative guide. For each month, an introductory essay captures the spirit of the season, while an “at a glance” summary lists the key natural events occurring. Each category in the natural world – from birds to the night sky – is then covered in more detail. Finely detailed drawings complement the text.