Out-of-Door Geography

Out-of-Door Geography

©2016 Richele Baburina

For personal home schoolroom use only. Permission must be granted by the author for any other usage.

Notes of Lessons
Teacher Training

Group: Out-of-Door Geography.
Time: 30 Minutes

*Please note, such a lesson is never given to students at one time but serves to demonstrate what would take place in the course of regular studies of Out-of-Door Geography or on Geography/Nature Walks. The time listed is for teacher training.


  • Establish the idea of direction through the rising and setting of the sun and its position and properties.
  • Have the student tell in which direction places and objects lie using this knowledge.
  • Notice the direction of the wind.
  • Practice noticing the directions of places and things both outside and inside.

Step I. —Ask the student to notice where the sun is currently in the sky. Find out if your student has observed from where the sun rises and sets.

Give a brief sketch of what direction is and how the sun is an aid in determining direction: When we want to go to a new place we must first find which way it is or its direction. If we are lost we ask someone for directions. The sun rises in the east and sets in the west. By knowing this, you can tell the direction in which places or objects near your home or town lie.

Step II. —Have your student stand so that her right hand is towards the east where the sun rises, and her left toward the west where the sun sets.

The names of our four principal or chief directions are north, south, east, and west. Find out if the student knows that she is facing toward the north and her back is toward the south. When your right hand is toward the east and your left hand toward the west then you are facing northward, or north, and your back is toward the south. Ask the student to name objects and places on her right or east as well as those things on her left or to the west. Next, have the student note the places and things in front or to the north and note that the things and places behind her are to the south.

Step III. —Ask the student if she knows how the sun may help determine direction if she in a new place and hasn’t seen where the sun rises or sets.

At noon the shadows of all objects fall toward the north. If she faces the sun at noon, she will be facing south and her shadow will fall north. If she then faces the north, once again the south will be behind her, the east to her right and the west to her left.

Step IV. —If there is a breeze or wind, have your student determine from which direction the wind is coming.

The direction of the wind is said to be a sign of the weather and is why we have sayings such as, “A wind from the south has rain in its mouth” and, “The north wind doth blow and we shall have snow.” Remember, just as you are called an American because you come from America, a wind is said to be from that direction from whence it comes, not the direction in which it blows. If you travel to Canada, this does not make you Canadian—you and the wind are both named from whence you came.

Step V. —Now the student may notice the directions objects face and determine the direction of the wind by the movement of things.

Practice may take place both outdoors and in answering questions such as:

  • Which are the north, south, east, and west side of the home, barn, church, etc.?
  • Which direction do the windows face in the living room, bedroom, schoolroom, etc.?
  • In which direction does the chimney smoke blow?
  • Which way does the tall grass or other plants bend in the wind?
  • What is the movement of the tree branches?


Mason, C. M. (1925). Home Education (Charlotte Mason Research & Supply ed., Vol. 1). London: Kegan Paul, Trench, Trübner & Co. Ltd.

Mason, C. M. (1925). The Ambleside Geography Books (Revised ed., Vol. I, Elementary Geography). London: Kegan Paul, Trench, Trübner & Co. Ltd.

Baburina, R. (2012). Mathematics: An Instrument for Living Teaching. Simply Charlotte Mason.