Remember the hashtag!
What is Field Notes Friday?
Field Notes Friday is a way to use social media to encourage yourself and others to get outside and to engage with and appreciate the world. Who knew – you can use digital technology to advance outdoor enjoyment and learning!
Who can participate?
Field Notes Friday is for anyone: beginners, biologists, gardeners, naturalists, park personnel, historical interpreters, teachers, writers, professors, photographers, students, families, and more. Individuals participate, and #FieldNotesFriday is also a great way for organizations to share their insights and observations about their locale.
What are field notes?
Field notes are thoughts and observations about the world around you, wherever you are, right now.
Although I extol the benefits of having a dedicated field or nature journal, any format works. You can type notes on your phone, write them in your personal diary, use your camera or a photo album as a cache of visual notes, take audio or video recordings of your surroundings, or share your notes directly onto the social media outlet of your choice. You might not even use a cohesive location for your notes other than your favorite social media. That’s one reason hashtags are important; they help you find and share your #FieldNotesFriday entries easily.
How do I share my #FieldNotesFriday entry?
On whatever social media you already use, simply post content as you normally would, but let people know you’re sharing a #FieldNotesFriday observation. Remember the hashtag! That little # symbol combined with “Field Notes Friday” written as one word makes it easier for people, including you, to find and share notes and add to a wealth of observations and experiences.
What counts as a #FieldNotesFriday entry?
Just about anything! You might share a
- list of species you saw or heard
- identification question
- page from your journal
- even a transcript of a page if your handwriting is as… um… variable as mine.
What social media can I use?
Field notes work on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, Tumblr, and more. If you blog, you’ll notice there are several ways to include relevant tags in your posts (for example, on WordPress, #FieldNotesFriday can be a “category” and a “tag”).
Am I missing another venue? Let me know!
Are there any rules?
Not really; only helpful suggestions.
- Post as many Fridays as you can. (It doesn’t even have to be Friday.)
- Be easy on yourself; informal and raw entries are the norm.
- Keep #FieldNotesFriday in mind as you go through the week; you can post an observation from any day.
- Encourage others to participate.
- Use the hashtag!
How do I (and others) benefit?
If you’ve read this far, you probably grasp how beneficial this practice can be, but if you need more convincing, this list is from my original explanation. You and I, and others who participate in #FieldNotesFriday, will:
- Go outside more often and for longer
- Enjoy the outdoors even more
- Make keener observations
- Write boldly and freely
- Build a community around nature and journaling that benefits others and ourselves
- And I can add from experience: you’ll learn a LOT!
- Dare I get grandiose and predict #FieldNotesFriday will increase society’s scientific and ecological literacy? Time will tell… and you can help!
Where are some #FieldNotesFriday examples?
- Here’s a picture and simple explanation
- This is a Journal Page + transcript
- This is a great sketch from The Ecology of Ignorance
- One #FieldNotesFriday entry can lead to others, with great synergy!
- Here’s a Facebook entry
- These entries show up in a Twitter search for #FieldNotesFriday
- Same as above on Pinterest
- And here are some Instagram examples
Join the #FieldNotesFriday movement.