Journal into Spring

Great changes are happening all around us as spring comes closer with every passing day. Why not keep a journal this year to help you observe spring’s coming? Writing and drawing can sharpen your observation skills and enrich your life.

Get a notebook so that you can write down and draw what you see as winter is replaced by spring. Each time you notice some new clue that spring is starting, write down the date as well as what you observe. Try to describe what you have noticed with good adjectives that tell just how it looks, sounds, or smells. Tell what it reminds you of, what it is like. Use drawings if they help explain what has changed or what is new. Don't worry if your drawing isn't as pretty as you like. Just try to draw it well enough that it helps you remember what you saw.

Now, pay attention to changes as they happen and write them down. Write something every day, even if you have to write that you didn't notice any signs of spring. Sometimes winter seems to be winning, but it never does.

As March begins, there are already more hours of daylight than there were in midwinter. From your own observations or using the data found in an almanac or on the weather page of a newspaper, keep track of when the sun rises in the morning and sets at night. Also, keep a record of the daily high and low temperatures. A page or two of your journal could be a chart of sunrise and sunset times. Another couple of pages could be a chart of high and low temperatures.

Make notes about birds. When do you first see robins in your neighborhood? When do you notice red-winged blackbirds or grackles? What bird songs do you hear as spring comes? (Hint: cardinals, chickadees, and red-winged black birds are among the first.)

Pay attention to when tree buds start to get larger and open.

Make notes about the first garden flowers to bloom. When do you see the first flowers? What are they?
When do you first notice earthworms on the lawns and sidewalks?

Keep track of how people dress for the outdoors. When do hats and gloves start to be left home? When do people first wear raincoats or carry umbrellas?

Seasons are filled with plants and animals responding to changes in light and temperature. Most people don’t notice these changes until spring is almost half over. By keeping a journal this year, you will have a chance to enjoy the season’s changes more than ever before.

See our page First Signs of Spring for more tips on observing spring seasonal changes. 
For more ideas of what to look for each season, see Phenology. (Phenology is the study of seasonal changes.)
Visit some of our Spring Activity Pages for more ideas.

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