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Nature's Explosions

Updated: May 2

What’s all perfectly folded up in a tiny snug package and waits patiently all winter for the warm sun to create energy for it to burst open? You guessed it! Leaf buds and flower buds are springing open, unfurling their solar capturing leaves and reproductive flower parts to carry them through the season. Thanks to Rose (terminal bud) and Salmon (tree twig) for showing us how this amazing feat of nature works. Hard to believe that all this material can fit into one tiny suitcase.

Talk to your child about who their budding buddy is and which trees they are going to be watching over the coming weeks. Can they name all four trees they collected buds from today? What did they notice about the buds on each one? They may use new words such as terminal bud (end of the twig), side bud, or even suitcase (bud casing) in their descriptions. It is fascinating stuff, and now is the time to include these up-close observations on your ramblings in nature around your neighbourhood.

Now each child has a job at home. They chose a particular twig to watch for changes. Place this in a jar of water on a sunny window sill, keep the water fresh and check on it for changes. It would be great if some notes of observations could be kept to share next week. You may need to moderate expectations as some think their pear twig will grow quickly into a pear tree:).

Songbirds are in frenzied party mode at the farm. Check in about sighting's during our snack time sit spot. Where did your child choose to sit and what birds visited close to their spot. Chickadee, spied a robin’s nest up in the eaves of the house. Why does this explain Mr. Robin attacking the windows? She also figured out the our resident Chickadees may be making their next home in the nesting box on the fence. Frog and Coyote spied a robin’s nest high up in the Honey Locust tree. Enjoy your chat about all these keen observations. 

Acorn figured we should reach our destination (Pine Haven) by making a water crossing, up the windy trails past the spruce windbreak. It took some teamwork to get across. We noticed that a hunter was out for the last day of the Wild Turkey hunt. Lucky Big Raccoon brought his orange vest and Turtle wore her orange hoodie! All joking aside, we always check ahead so we know about any hunting activity nearby to keep everyone safe.

Forest friends always show their creativity and hopefully will be the next generation of problem solvers. Where else could you be transported to 'Infinity World", be chased by monsters, fix a shelter, catch creatures and dandelions out of the water, whittle some sticks, and buy a water strider at the local pet store. I am sure I am missing out on something so ask your child what they liked to do during their wander time today?

Using natural items for art projects further develops creativity and fine motor skills. Today's project was weaving. Weaving also involves using patience and persistence. Did the string and the string tension affect your child's ability to weave? If so, can they describe the problem and how they overcame it? This is a craft we will definitely try again to get that sense of mastery.

Forest friends also worked together to refurbish their nest then use it as part of a game about robin parenting. Can your child recall the life cycle of a Robin? In our game, the 'robins' collected food for the energy to gain eggs in their nest. How many eggs does a Robin lay? How many eggs (corks) did your child's nest have? How many eggs hatched? Many of the eggs became hatchlings (corks with a pipe cleaner around it) and our 'robin parents' did a good job. What would eat a Robin egg or tiny hatchling? If a Cowbird lays an egg in a Robin's nest, is that good or bad? As 'robin parents', what would you do differently next time?

Let's leave you with some things we noticed or found today. See if you can capture a story about any of these.

Hope your child enjoyed lots of happy moments as much as we all did today!



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