Homeschool Creations

Monday, September 21, 2009

Nature Friend Magazine {Review}

Not too long ago I had some sample science/nature magazines sent to us {I'm not naming any names} and I later found Laurianna with a Sharpie marker blacking out text in places. I was a little upset with her at first, but she innocently looked at me and said, "Mom, they were saying the earth was billions of years old. That's not true, so I was crossing it off."

A few weeks later, Nature Friend magazine showed up in our mailbox to review for the Homeschool Crew. The kid's and I have loved pouring over the pictures, articles, art lesson, and the many other features that this magazine offers.

Helping Children Explore the Wonders of God's Creation

Nature Friend is written from a Creationist perspective and is geared toward children ages 7-16. The magazine publishes twelve issues each year and every other month the issues are focused a little more for older kids, making it a magazine that the whole family can really enjoy and use. The magazine was:
"...born out of {the} desire to encourage children to believe in God as their Creator and to seek out, recognize, and appreciate His handiwork....Nature Friend...policy has been to simply stand on the truth of God’s Word and to present it as enjoyable fact while learning about the creatures God has created."
It is a full color magazine that offers features similar to secular nature magazines for kids. The artwork and photography are wonderful!! Some of the features Nature Friend has:
  • You Can Draw ~ a monthly art lesson that details how to draw specific objects from nature {flowers, animals, etc...}. Children can submit their drawings to the magazine to be featured in future issues.
  • Scavenger Hunts ~ Each issue has several different things hidden in it for you and your children to find
  • The Story Behind the Photo ~ Photographers share the story of the picture that they took
  • Creation Close-ups ~ great close-up shots sent into the magazine
  • Pictures and Poems ~ contributions from readers that are shared and published in the magazine
  • Invisibles ~ a hidden picture game where you find smaller objects in a large picture
  • Learning by Doing ~ experiments and activities to further reinforce science at home
Study Guide Feature

Nature Friend also has a 'Study Guide' option available with your magazine subscription. For an additional $2/issue, the guide comes as an insert in the magazine and provides you with additional activities and resources that go along with the monthly issue, including crossword puzzles, research questions, writing activities, and more. The activities can be copied {for those with multiple children}. You can view some sample study guides here.

Our Time with Nature Friend

The August issue of Nature Friend had an article on cicada bugs. Not necessarily my favorite topic, but the kids were completely enthralled with the bugs. So much so that they spent hours outside hunting down their skins and presenting them to me with utter joy and lining them up on my windowsill.

I would show you the mound of skins they discovered, but in all honesty, those empty skins were grossing me out {and even scared Rick the first time he saw them!} they are no longer with us.

Laurianna and McKenna have really enjoyed the fun activities the magazine offers and the stories are just the right length for sitting down and reading together. I love knowing that the focus of the magazine is on God and His creation ~ and that I don't have to worry about what the kids will come across in their reading.

The option of having the Study Guide to go along with the magazine makes the magazine even better. The two issues that we received included a 'photo critique' on how to take better pictures as well as a recipe, writing lessons, true/false questions, additional research questions, crossword puzzles, and art ideas.

Purchasing a Subscription

A full year's subscription consists of 12 monthly issues. Study guides are available for each month's magazine. Yearly subscriptions to Nature Friend magazine are $36.00 and Study Guides are also available on an individual or yearly basis {$24/year}.

You can use the coupon code BLOG93 to save an additional $3.00 off a new subscription to Nature Friend {valid until November 30, 2009}.

The Nature Friend website offers several sample issues of the magazine as well as the teacher's guide so you can get a better understanding of the magazine.

Click on the Homeschool Crew banner to read other reviews about this product.
As a member of the Homeschool Crew, I was given this product to review,
and I do not have to return the product to the vendor. I was not paid for this post.
All opinions expressed in this post are mine.


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