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Flying Creatures of the Night Review by Dawn Peterson

By Cindy West and Melissa Leach
Shining Dawn Books, LLC

Flying Creatures of the Night is one of several nature-based unit studies produced by Shining Dawn Books and is conveniently available in a downloadable e-book format. If you're looking for a thorough nature study resource on the topic of nocturnal wildlife, this is it!

Flying Creatures of the Night covers several topics, including owls, bats, moths, fireflies, nighttime sounds, nighttime vision, predator/prey relationships and animal classification. There is information on sketching, keeping a nature notebook, literature, poetry, artist and picture study references for enrichment, writing and research ideas, Scriptural lessons, and useful Internet links. There are tips on how to include very young children as well as ideas on teaching older kids, guidance on how to use the study for co-ops, colorful pages to print off for notebooking and observation, and so much more! I appreciate that even though they list a wonderful assortment of resources and ideas for you to pull together a great critter study, you could opt to use just the information provided in the e-book along with the nature notebooking pages and have plenty!

Even though I don't prefer a unit study method for most subjects in our homeschool, I like it a great deal for non-formal, Charlotte Mason-style nature study with my children. The authors provide plenty of tips on how to use the material and how to put together a simple lesson plan (which really is simple). The e-book is beautifully laid out and is easy to use.

Authors Cindy West and Melissa Leach are homeschool mothers who have put together this terrific product with a desire to help equip and encourage us to get outside with our children and study God's creation. Their heart for cultivating a wonder and appreciation of nature in children is infectious, and it really shines through in their products!

I highly recommend Flying Creatures of the Night to any homeschool parent who wants to facilitate a fun and informative study of nighttime flying creatures.

Product review by Dawn Peterson, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, June 2011