If you want to get the results it’s important to adopt good naturalist routines and habits that will help you learn. Kamana is designed for just such a purpose.
What is Kamana?
The Kamana Naturalist Training Program is a complete home study course to help average people become skilled naturalists.
I used this program when I first got into studying nature to help familiarize myself with a well-rounded naturalist routine. It covers all the basics from very practical species identification (birds, plants, mammals, trees, ecology, etc.) to more subtle skills like how to use your eyes and ears on the landscape.
And the best part is that since this is a distance-learning program, there are no travel costs, and you can take part from wherever you are right now... Whether you live in the middle of a major city, or in shack out in the woods.
Your studies will be custom tailored to the natural history of your own area, and you have the option to go at whatever pace is right for you.
Who is Kamana For?
Kamana is perfect for anyone who wants to connect on a deeper level with the natural world. It's set up so that people with absolutely no experience can start getting outside and learning about their local area.
It’s not just for beginners though. Even people who have degrees & long-term experience in nature-based settings will undoubtedly learn new things that might even blow your mind.
I recommend it to:
Birders wishing to expand their nature knowledge
Beachcombers, hikers, anyone interested in nature
There are practical step-by-step exercises and journaling strategies that help you explore nature in a free-flowing yet directed manner.
The complete Kamana Naturalist Training Program is spread over 4 chunks and takes anywhere in the range of 1-3 years to complete.
If this all seems like a major commitment, don’t worry.. Each section is a complete program in and of itself, so it’s not necessary to commit to the whole thing until you know that’s what you want to do.
Kamana 1: Exploring Natural Mystery Kamana 2: The Path of The Naturalist Kamana 3: Deepening The Roots of Nature Awareness Kamana 4: The Complete Naturalist Kamana for Kids (A separate program for youngsters)
I’ve personally only completed as far as Kamana three, but I can tell you that each section is packed with unique information and strategies. Even if you only plan on doing the first stages of Kamana, you’re still gonna learn a ton at every step of the road.
It’s all very accessible without too much academic craziness, yet still gives you a healthy dose of geekiness. Be prepared to go deeply into a rooted understanding of nature from a holistic perspective that supports exploration in any field.
I would recommend that you start off either with Kamana one, or by listening to the seeing through native eyes recordings. These are two very inexpensive options that will give you a really good idea about whether this program is right for you.
My Experience With Kamana
One of the things I love about the Kamana program is that it guides you to work with your local environment through direct observation. It’s not all book learning. You’ll actually be working with your eyes, ears, nose, mind, etc.
There's a very strong cultural context with lots of stories, new concepts & opportunities for deeper reflection. It’s not just about being a naturalist, it’s also learning to have respect for nature, and grow our appreciation for the environment. I like to think of it as the ultimate manual for nature awareness. It’s an initiation of it’s own rite.
I found it very easy to implement the strategies & noticed massive gains in my own awareness right from the very start. In fact, everything I’ve learned in this course still works for me today and I continue to feel the benefits…
My memory is much sharper now, and I’m always noticing new things in my environment. It’s such a joy to be able to go outside and connect into a much larger world at any moment. I now have new friends in all the birds, plants & trees.
It wasn’t all fun and games though. This wouldn’t be an honest review if I told you there weren’t parts of Kamana that I struggled with.
There were times when some of the journaling assignments felt a lot like a school project. I found that doing some of the work in the way they described made it difficult for me to retain the information.
I always opt for understanding over memorization so I ended up adopting different strategies than what was suggested for learning about the species at my study area. On the other hand, I know lots of people who found that it was actually the awareness exercises that were much more challenging.
Everyone seems to have different propensities for being drawn to certain parts of Kamana. Some people just can’t get enough of sitting at their desk with field guides, species journals, sketching & research. I on the other hand found myself more drawn to being out on the land to sit & observe things happening.
Regardless of whatever camp you find yourself in, I do think it’s helpful for everyone to work with our edges and either push through, or find some other strategy that accomplishes the same learning goal.
You’re going to be pushed to both stretch your awareness and also have the technical knowledge to back up your observations.
Be prepared to put in some serious work. It’ll be worth it though!
The Best Way To Get Started With Kamana
The best way to get going with Kamana is simply to try it out.
While it is technically possible to start your journey with Kamana Two, I would recommend that you begin with Kamana One. K1 is easily affordable for everyone and it’ll give you a test run of the kinds of things you’ll be doing as you progress to later stages.
Wilderness Awareness School offers a number of different packages that will help you save money as you find the resources that are right for you.
All you gotta do now is find the path that’s right for you and get moving. I look forward to hearing about your journey!
Hi, my name is Brian and I created this website to share my love for nature. I’m here to show you step-by-step how you can learn cool and practical skills like bird language, animal tracking and nature observation.