We are the Herons, heading out along the trail towards new growth at nature school. On our second day in Harrington, the flow of our day is somewhat familiar, and this group is prepared!.
We began with the book ‘Fall Walk’ which tells the story of a grandmother sharing the astonishing variety of leaves with their grandchild as they rake them in to a pile. This led our children on a wonder-filled leaf collection walk to find different sizes, colours, edges, shapes and all other things that go with leaves (seeds, cones, corn cobs, sticks…). You could just feel the explosive energy in this group for exploring new things.
Ask your child…
*What types of leaves did you collect? Tell me about their shapes.
*Which was your favourite leaf discovery?
*Where did you go leaf hunting? (End of the Mill Pond trail, Mystery Forest, Butterfly Hill)
Tree friends will be a topic of conversation for all of us across the seasons. Today we received a special gift of a nature journal. We sketched our tree friends outline, and may have added a leaf rubbing. This relationship with trees will be continued in the weeks and months to come. Trees have a profound impact on our lives, and just as we need friends to teach us about ourselves, we need tree friends to help us understand the real balance that needs to exist in the world.
A wonderful imaginary journey to take which with your child which will help us go further with this might be sparkded by questions like...
*What is your tree friend like? Do they have other neighbours?
*What does your tree do when your not there? Does it have any visitors? Does it help others?
We will soon lose a key piece of information about most of the trees around Mill Pond, so today we focused on leaves. Dragonfly brought along a precious story called ‘Leaf Man’ which goes on a windy journey where leaves meet and become the shape of different animals. Of course we used our leaf collection to make our own leaf man on our blanket canvas.
The great and amazing Mrs Eastman, our librarian, brought song, story and literacy together on our topic of trees. Her ukelele version to the tune of ‘The Green Grass Grew All Around’ but in the key of trees, was so much fun!! A highly active squirrel was the star of the story, taking a voyage from Oak to acorn and back again. New knowledge about life cycle helps build an appreciation of the fragile and intricate web of life.
These kids really wished to hang out in Cedar Hideaway again. Their ticket in was a leaf with teeth, and they were happy to entertain themselves in this space building cedar bark boats with leaf sails. This could have gone a LONG time, but we needed to get back to the Grist Mill for a final journal entry from last week about Monarch Butterfly life cycles.
Ask your child to…
*Explain the life cycle of the monarch and finish up this in their journal.
*Show their tree friend sketch and add more detail if they wish. (think about their trees habitat)
A full day of experiential learning ends well with a bit of singing. Next week I’ll remember to hand out words to the first songs we will learn together, 'Mother Earth' and 'Talk About Love'. Great tunes for an inspiring group of children.
Happy Trails until next week Forest Friends:)