Desert Nature Study Printables and Ideas

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We love Nature Study in our homeschool. It is my children’s absolute favorite subject to study.

I lived in beautiful Arizona half of my life. We moved back to Florida when my oldest was 6. My girls LOVE nature study. Every time I go back to visit Arizona, or I see pictures online, I always think of how much my girls would absolutely love nature study in the desert. I wish I could take them on a hike to explore the plants and wildlife that they will never get a chance to see here in Florida. Thankful for the internet and the library, I can at least give them a taste of the nature of the desert.

Here are some neat nature study printables, unit studies, books and ideas to create your own Desert themed nature study, even if you don’t live anywhere near a desert climate:

Desert Printables:
Desert Bingo Montessori Style Cards from The Files of Mrs. E

Desert Wildflowers Cactus Labeling Page from Exploring Nature

Desert Wildflowers (Cactus) Labeling Page

A Walk in the Desert free printable from Totally Terrific in Texas
Connections: Deserts from Homeschool Share – there are links to different lapbook templates, printables, foldable and unit studies on deserts.
Create a Desert Life Book from Lesson Pathways. Each printout contains information about the animal/plant that can be used as study guides.
Endangered Desert Species Card Game from Lesson Pathways.

Desert Animals Unit Study and Lapbook from Homeschool Share

Sonoran Desert Kids has an entire page of threatened and endangered desert plants and animals to color.

Online Resources:
About Deserts Habitat Description from Exploring Nature
Desert Habitat Online Interactive Matching Game from Exploring Nature

Nature Study at the Desert Garden from Abundant Soul Life – beautiful nature study photos!

Up Close With Cactus from Handbook of Nature Study – I love this nature study. There are links to some great online resources, as well as a beautiful picture walk through of the sights in the desert. It is like you are really there.

Desert Nature Study: Joshua Tree National Park from Handbook of Nature Study

Desert USA is an online website that has tons of nature resources and information about the desert:
Desert Animals
Desert Plants
Desert Food Chain
Desert Wildflower Field Guide

The American Southwest  has on online index for Cacti of Arizona. There is a list of all cacti found in Arizona; the main species first, those with a photograph and full description page, followed by all other species, generally less common.

Tooter 4 Kids Desert Creatures – This site explores the various types of desert creatures and includes pictures. It also explains how these animals can survive in desert climates, as well as what they eat. There are also links to various desert creature coloring pages.

Desert Sensory Bin from Kids Play Box

Tooter 4 Kids Desert Plants – this site includes beautiful pictures and descriptions of the most common plants found in the desert.

Tooter 4 Kids Fun Desert Facts – Fun and interesting facts for kids to learn about the desert. 

Nature Study in the Sonoran Desert – a guide to the flora and fauna of Arizona and Sonora, Mexico.

Desert Activities:
Build a Desert Biome from Schooling a Monkey

Learning about biomes? This fun science activity shows you how to build a desert biome in a jar! Perfect for classrooms or homeschool!
Exploring a Cactus with free printable cactus book from Teaching Mama

Making Your Own Cactus

Here are some great nature books to read about the desert:

Desert Giant: The World of the Saguaro Cactus

Cactus Hotel

Creatures of the Desert World

Cactus Desert One Small Square

Written by Sarah


Sarah is a wife, daughter of the King and Granola Mama to 4 children ages 16-5. She is a Charlotte Mason style homeschooler and has been homeschooling for 13 years now. She is still trying to find the balance between work and keeping a home and says she can only do it by the Grace of God, Coffee and Green Smoothies!

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