The Detective Post #17

News From the Outdoors

The Nature Detectives experienced it all in the last few weeks at preschool, from t-shirts to snowflakes! The wacky winter weather provided lots of interesting ways to explore Woodend as well as the opportunity to hunt for more fairies and gnomes.

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Gnoman Empire

 

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We explored the sanctuary looking for winter fungi and fairy and gnome homes. We discovered gnomes hiding all around Woodend including the lookout, the meadow and the amphitheater! For one of our naturalist hikes, we hiked around Woodend spying different types of fancy fungi. We found lots of different types of shelf fungi and the children enjoyed loudly gobbling whenever we found colorful turkey tails!

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Wherever I may gnome

 

Both classes enjoyed building large gnome homes next to the mansion. The kiddos worked on building structures they could fit into as well as transforming them into space ships and bear hibernation stations!

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Another exciting addition to our outdoor play has been the Red-shouldered Hawk that has taken up Woodend as its new home! “Hawk Alert” has become an often overheard phrase as we have seen it perched in trees as well as soaring above the meadow.

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Can you spy the hawk?

 

We also enjoyed playing in snow this week! With the flurries of snow we learned more about the snow drops that have been popping up all over Woodend. Blue Crab led us on a naturalist hike where we learned that these little flowers are not only poisonous to the deer, but also split like garlic bulbs to reproduce.

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Sherlock Gnome and the case of the sneaky snow drops

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News from the Classroom

We continued our fairy and gnome fun indoors this week, examining rainbows and learning about kindness and love. For our Mindfulness Monday lessons, we learned new ways to calm our bodies, as well as talked about filling our kindness buckets through the story, How Full is your Bucket?

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We did two experiments this week at preschool. First, we created rainbow artwork on which we placed four large mushrooms over night. The kids observed the mushroom spores fall onto our artwork, leaving brownish prints behind. Our second experiment also involved rainbows. The kiddos hypothesized what would happen to five white carnations when they were each left in brightly colored water. Each child made a guess and we watched them over the week soak up the watercolor paint and slowly change color.

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At the art tables, we created two class books this week. In tune with our kindness ideas, the classes created Helping Hands stories. Each child came up with an idea of how they can use their hands to help those around them to which they added a set of their hand prints. On our last day at preschool, the now resident fairy and gnome experts created field guides from our studies. Both classes also enjoyed our recycled rainbow project in which students sorted and pasted recycled objects from home on the corresponding color of the rainbow. The beautiful creations are displayed on our classroom door.

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Somewhere over the recycled rainbow…

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Around the classroom these weeks, we played with rainbow color connects, as well as opened up the light table to experiment with colored cups and gems. We created magic potions in the lab table, as well as built on our fairy and gnome homes in the block area.

We celebrated love at preschool this past week by mixing up a batch of Love Potion #9 to sip on! The kids worked together to add all of the smoothie ingredients before watching it all mix together in the blender. The creation station open for kids to make cards to send out love into the world!

Books we Read

Charlotte and the Quiet Place by Deborah Sosin

Children of the Forest by Elsa Beskow

No, No, Gnome! By Ashlyn Anstee

Slop by Margaret Reed MacDonald

Rainbow Fairies by Nicola Baxter

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Weekly Top Hits

Deep and Wide

Deep and wide

Deep and wide

There’s a fountain flowing deep and wide (da, da, da, da, da, da)

Deep and wide

Deep and wide

There’s a fountain flowing deep and wide

 

Rainbows in Bubbles (Tune: She’ll be comin’ round the Mountain)

I’ve got rainbows in my bubbles yes, I do!

I’ve got rainbows in my bubbles yes, I do!

When I look up towards the sun,

I see rainbows everyone,

I’ve got rainbows in my bubbles yes, I do!

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Spoiler Alert: When we come back, we will be learning about dinosaurs!

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Oaks Forest Kindergarten News from the Wild #17

These last two weeks the Oaks made me think a lot about framing – about knowing yourself and knowing the children you teach, about how to find the right angle and choose the right word to light the right spark. It’s one of the key skills to scaffolding children’s play and learning.

We started out last week building fairy houses. At least that’s how we first described the activity. I spent my childhood building these houses in the roots and hollow places in trees. It’s one of my favorite things to do, still.  Though some of the Oaks had built a few other small world creations, including fairy playgrounds, it wasn’t an activity that ever  took off like fort-building or potion-making. But with the Fairies and Gnomes unit going strong in Saplings, it was time.

The girls took right to it. There was a hollow tree at the entrance to Hilltop that had been begging all year to be a fairy house (at least to me!). We scavenged some great bark and an empty knothole and even a coconut shell bed; they made a throne, tables, bedding, a toilet and a shower. The house had multiple levels and a pretend elevator. It was homey upstairs with space for a ball in the entrance hall. They left notes asking about fairy water and food sources and fairy families and fairy locomotion. Exactly what I imagined.

A few of the boys groaned. They had BIG forts to build and holes to dig. So I said, “What if it were a Fairy Fortress?” “Wait,” they asked,”are there Elves here too?” Soon a super secret fortified Elven city was under construction. Part of it was underground. It had sharp stakes for protection. It was so secret, we had to promise that if we teachers mentioned it, we’d say it was, “100 miles away from Audubon.” Key words changed the framing. Fortress. Secret. Elves. On it!

Then the fairies, gnomes and elves WROTE BACK! This was gender-neutral magic. Tiny handwritten scrolls on aged paper were found tucked into both fairy and elf homes. Children who had not yet built anything joined in writing questions.

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Why all the magic on top of this already magical place? Magic touches the heart. And this is the age of magic and make-believe. Amping up the excitement and wonder is like extra fuel for their emotional connection to the natural world and to each other.

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We looped back to our cartography exploration by introducing a big laminated map of Woodend. The Oaks had been fascinated by the map in My Father’s Dragon, and were equally drawn to the modified Woodend map. Maps have magic too.

 

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Map of Wild Island

Some key landmarks were on the map, including the waypoints to Hilltop we mapped the week before. But many were intentionally missing. The map now travels with us, so the Oaks can add in their points of interest. So far, they’ve added the Outdoor Classroom and Playground, the Campfire Circle, the Workshop (their name for the area full of bush honeysuckle past the campfire), the Ultimate Climber, the Castle Climber, three fox holes and the new nature see-saw. We’ll continue to add to this map until it truly represents the Oaks’ Woodend.

This week we introduced the concept of protected areas. What if the fairies, gnomes and elves wanted to visit a park? How big would it be? What would they do there? What would they see? We led the children through an activity usually called Micro-Parks or Micro-Trails – but we had to call them Fairy Parks. With toothpick flags, yarn and lots of imagination, the children worked on their own or in pairs to design miniature protected areas. Each needed to have boundaries, trails, a viewpoint, a flora/fauna point of interest, a water feature, a physical challenge, a bridge, and a picnic area.

Again, the Oaks divided themselves into girls and boys. The girls laid out beautifully designed parks with swimming holes and cicada shell interpretive stops and bridges to picnic area view points.

The boys chose the tangly rooted end of a giant fallen log. It’s a favorite play spot, because of the tunnel underneath and the nice loose soil you always find around root balls. It would also look pretty exciting if you were fairy-sized. Having learned my lesson the first time round, I re-framed my description of the activity slightly. The key term to engage the boys was “physical challenges.” Their park had a dark cave, high narrow promontories, rope ladders, an ice waterfall, and of course a ranger station in case of inevitable injuries. There was also an avalanche zone, which sparked discussion about the difference between a hazard and a challenge. A second park (also on a root mass) had an active volcano, steep cliffs, and a thorny vine to climb. Either way, they used up all the red and yellow flags. Those parks weren’t as pretty to look at, but they were treasure troves of imagination and language.

The next step was to make a map of their parks, using a key to show all the points of interest. We were lucky to have a few warm finger-friendly days for outdoor drawing and writing before winter returned.

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Even with scaffolding, not all of the children built houses or parks or made maps. But they watched, shared ideas, and asked questions. Participation is a continuum, not just in or out. Making a map or sounding out words is intellectual risk-taking. Just like climbing up or into a tree, some children are ready to jump in right away and others need to observe from the edge until they are ready.

At the end of the week, we set off to explore one of the edges of Woodend that is new to us and off the beaten track. It is wondrous to me that we can spend every day exploring these woods, and still find something new and AMAZING. We had been calling this area the Far Corner (there is magic in names too) and had been meaning to head that way to find some “hidden” fox dens, but somehow never made it that far. This week, we found the dens (fox and groundhog), and much, much more.

It was epic nature explorer MAGIC. It blew our minds. There is no other way to describe it. I’ll let the photos tell the story.

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Nature see-saw. We found this one, a gift from the woods!

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So good, we had to build a few more in other places…

Then there was this…

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A 30-foot hollow log!

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Yes, they can fit inside. 

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Thinking about it

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All the way through!

And it gets even better…right next door we found a giant hollow tulip poplar.

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The teacher goes first to make sure we can get in AND out.

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You can only see her because she is standing on a stump inside the tree

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Tree home, with room to stand. 

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Tree caver

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“We are really inside a real tree!”

We’ll be back. And we might even make you a map!

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Detective Post #17

 

News From the Outdoors:

We were welcomed to school on Monday with a magical gift from Mother Nature…Snow! We couldn’t have asked for a more magical way to kick off the Fairies and Gnomes Unit. As the Nature Detectives arrived at school they discovered a mysterious spiral of fairy dust on the playground, which led us to the lookout where we discovered a hidden Gnome and a horde of “power crystals”. Inspired by the hidden Gnome, the kids played some hide and seek and enjoyed exploring the snow covered ground.

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Gnome, Sweet Gnome!

 

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Tuesday’s outdoor adventures started off with a bang as Blue Crab, our Winter Naturalist joined us and shared some knowledge about Deer and how they are crepuscular animals, a fancy science term given to animals that feed primarily in the twilight, as the sun is coming up in the morning and going down in the evening. He also showed the students a deer pelt and led a hike to the old well where the kids discovered yet another Gnome, and left some kindness wishes in the well.

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Well, well, well, what do we have here?

 

By Wednesday, the Nature Detectives were getting to be Fairy and Gnome experts as they discovered yet another Gnome hiding spot near the bird blind and also found the Fairy Fungus Matching Game! (F.F.M.G.) We played a few rounds of F.F.M.G. and then brought the game back to school with us to play in the class room as well. Another highlight from Wednesday is that the Nature Preschool became proud owners of a washer and dryer! Not super interesting for the kids, but the huge boxes they came in…that’s another story! The boxes became Gnome homes, time-tunnels, decorated mansions, the inside of a washing machine, and much more.

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Working fairy hard to make a Fairy House

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Spin Cycle

 

We capped off the week with two big sightings; near the pond both classes spied a Red Shouldered Hawk, once perched in a tree, and another time on the ground near the water! We’ve been seeing this large bird around Woodend on and off through the year but have seen it three times in the past two weeks! After the hawk sighting, the kids headed to the Ultimate Climber and discovered yet another hidden Gnome! Who knows what they’ll discover next week?

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H2O meets H2Snow

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Rollin’ with the Gnomies

 

News From the Classroom:

The classroom was a busy place this week with lots of new Fairy and Gnome-related interest areas. The Nature Detectives built Fairy train tracks that tunneled through trees and giant mushrooms, built elaborate homes for some Fairy and Gnome figurines in the block area, earned their Fairy Wings in the dramatic play area and cultivated hordes of treasure in the sensory bin.

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Crafternoon!

 

The students did some thinking about what they knew about Fairies and Gnomes and a common thread was that they are kind, helpful and fix things. (You can see all of the Nature Detective’s Fairy and Gnome ideas posted in the Cubby Room.) With ideas of kindness in their minds many of the Nature Detectives created kindness wishes on construction paper, wrote down their wishes and took them to the well with Blue Crab.

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Stir Mix-a-lot

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Snow Write

The kids got crafty this week as well, they created Fairy Dough out of Corn Starch and Hair Conditioner, made their very own Fairy and Gnome figurines, made houses for said figurines, and collected natural items to decorate Fairy/Gnome doors!

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Training to be Gnomes

 

The PM class capped off their week by creating a birthday book!

Weekly Top Hits:

Gnomes At Woodend (Tune: Home on the Range)

Gnomes, gnomes at Woodend

Where the Squirrels and Deer are all friends

Where often is heard, the song of a bird

And in the skies we see Sunny Ray

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Books We Read:

Flower Fairies: Magical Doors, Discover the Doors to Fairyopolis

Sam and Dave Dig a Hole by Mac Barnett

 

Spoiler Alert!:

More Fairies and Gnomes next week!

Oaks Forest Kindergarten News from the Wild # 16

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The Oaks continue to investigate cartography. We have visitors to Hilltop, so we proposed the need for a map and directions to help people find their way. We talked about the way points the Oaks use between the Preschool and Hilltop Home. The Oaks agreed that there were at least six way points. We have been naming these places since the beginning of the year, and they each have meaning to the children.

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The tree cookies represented different way points. There are many ways to represent something else. The tree cookies marked stations for drawing the way points.

 

On a cold rainy day, we took advantage of our dry, windless indoor space to draw pictures of each way point: The Preschool, The Safe Spot, The Lunch Spot, The Bridge and Benches, The Lookout, and Hilltop Home. The next day the sun shone, and the children worked on gluing all of their Way point pictures in order to show the route between Hilltop and the Preschool.

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In addition to practicing representational drawing, this mapping activity was also an exercise in sequencing, an essential cognitive skill that is a key building block for reading, writing and math. Sequencing is the process of putting events, ideas, and objects in a logical order. We practice sequencing every day – our class circle ritual is an exercise in sequencing; we talk about sequencing in stories (what happened first, what’s going to happen next); songs and poems; counting and much more. Parents practice sequencing at home with every day routines. Asking children to think about what comes next is a great sequencing prompt.

As we have children ranging in age from 4 to 6, it was interesting to see the developmental gradient. Some could order and glue and even label their pictures independently and others needed more scaffolding. “Where do we go after the Bridge?” “Which picture is this?”

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This week, we played Hide a Penny, a treasure map game. Chelsea and I made simple maps of Hilltop, hid pennies, and marked them on our maps. The children used the maps to find the pennies. Then, in a smaller group, they each made their own maps, hid pennies, and swapped maps. After hunting for treasure and finding most of it, we talked together about what made it easy or hard to follow the maps and find the pennies. Pictures that looked like the actual place were helpful, as were labels and accurate detail. We repeated the activity the next day, giving the first group the chance to add to their maps or make new ones. Maps gained detail and accuracy the second time around, and even included features like a blow-up inset to show the penny location inside a stick fort. Again, the children came into the activity in different places, and we could see that like anything, the more they practice, the better their maps will become. It was exciting to see how a child who is often very reluctant to participate in directed activities was the first to raise his hand and jump in.

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You can learn a lot from other cartographers

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The map might lead you INSIDE the fort.

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Time to map AND time to swing (you will not likely see this in regular kindergarten!)

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The tree cookie circle is the center of Hilltop and was a consistently recognizable feature on the Oaks maps.

Because maps go hand and hand with adventure stories, we also started reading our first chapter book: My Father’s Dragon by Ruth Stiles Gannett. Our new volunteer Carol brought us a laminated map of Wild Island and the Oaks are fascinated. They pass the map around as we read, following the route Elmer Elevator takes as he searches for the dragon. First he takes a boat to Tangerina, then he crosses to Wild Island by hopping from stone to stone (and a whale), then he passes the tortoises and the boars…and then…more trouble is sure to follow. But with a knapsack full of useful things like hair ribbons, rubber bands and chewing gum, he’s ready for anything.

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This is a “battle tree” with a stockpile of sticks way up high. Teamwork is the only way to make this work.

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This looks like tree climbing, but is actually pirates manning (womaning) their ship.

The Oaks designed a stellar physical education activity in the old foundation they call the Ice House. No adult would ever come up with something like this, but they could have done it for an hour (or more). It involved climbing into the foundation, collecting brick one by one, and throwing them out to ground level. Then climbing out and throwing them all back in. Super core strength work out, plus motor-planning and communication. All we did was add the rule that everyone should be out of the way before the bricks started flying.

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Physical Education Oaks-Style: First you throw all the bricks out…

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You climb out after the bricks…

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Then you throw them all back in again! And repeat and repeat…

The Oaks had plenty more adventures these past two weeks, including a romping game of Fox and Rabbits in the pouring rain (like hide and seek and tag with base at the rabbit warren); lots of climbing in and out of the old foundation and up into trees; the tearing down and rebuilding of forts; and digging, mixing and moving the glorious mud. There was time to engage with friends in cooperative play and time to play alone. We found an old paper wasp nest, worm castings, puddles, jelly fungi and many many deer.

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Playing Fox and Rabbits

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Hiding rabbit. They immediately understand that a thicket was better than tall grass.

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Hiding rabbit

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You can’t see us…

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Splash!

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Bat research pole

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Placing the wasp nest at the Treasure Tree

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Carol helping with a new fort

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How to watch deer

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Solo birthday party (I think…). I caught this photo when I noticed her talking to herself and carefully placing the stick upright just so. Private speech is important to children’s language and social-emotional development.

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The Detective Post #16

News from the Outdoors

The Detectives concluded our Nocturnal animal unit this week by thinking more about moths and possums! With the wet weather on Monday, the kids thought about what animals would be doing in the rain, as well as took time to explore our bamboo forest and meadow.

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Bamboo Shoots and Ladders

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Building with Ann-Mari

 

On Tuesday, both classes enjoyed our weekly naturalist visit from Blue Crab! This week, he continued our learning on foxes, sharing fox pelts and skulls with the classes. He took the Detectives to the meadow, where we searched for fox clues by the den, as well as playing a fox and rabbit tag game!

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Nest is the Best

 

When introducing our possum study, the detectives learned how these mammals ‘play possum’ to trick predators into thinking they are dead as to pass them over as prey. The Detectives enjoyed emulating this game, turning into tricky possums all around Woodend!

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Everything is Possum!

 

We ended our unit with a nocturnal animal party! We made posters for the playground and set out our night vision camera to see which nocturnal animal came to join our festivities! It was exciting to see which animals are playing on the playground when we are not around.

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Chester making his Party Début

 

News from the Classroom

We continued our Mindful Monday lessons this week on emotions. This week, we discussed how and when we feel angry, and things we can do with our bodies to help feel more calm. The Detectives enjoyed stomping their feet, patting the ground and taking deep breaths along with the story.

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It was another Birthday heavy week at preschool, both classes having two birthday celebrations! As the year progresses, it is so wonderful see how thoughtfully the students make their personalized birthday messages to each other.

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Birthday Book Bonanza

 

At the art table this week, the Detectives created their own stained glass luna moths, as well as new Possum sign in tags! Now, each kid will hang their upside down possum on our tree when they arrive to school.

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Mission Im-possum-able

 

We continued our light table play this week, building even more intricate structures with the magnatiles. In the block area, we opened up the play house and trucks, where auto lots and hospitals were built daily! In the dramatic play, we created our own fox den- the Detectives transformed in foxes and other nocturnal animals to play the part! We continued the nocturnal animal small world play in the lab table, where the kids camouflaged the animals under our cocoa mulch.

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You can never have too mulch fun!

 

On Thursday we ended our unit with a Nocturnal Animal PJ Party! At meeting, we did a show and share with every Detectives PJ’s and stuffies. In learning centers, we created glow-in-the-dark art work, as well as played with glow-in-the-dark night sky stickers in the classroom.

Books we Read

Oscar and the Moth by Geoff Waring

A Book of Sleep by Il Sung Na

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Weekly Top Hits

Everything is Possum (Tune: Everything is Awesome)

Everything is Possum

Everything is cool when at night you can see

Everything is Possum

When you live in a tree

Everything is better when we dangle together

Side by side 

You and I 

Gonna play possum together

Let’s stay safe forever

Everything is Possum

Everything is cool when at night you can see

Everything is Possum

When you live in a tree!

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Spoiler Alert: Next week we are starting our Fairies and Gnomes unit!

Oaks Forest Kindergarten #15

Hello January! Below freezing on Monday, in the 60s by Thursday. Maybe we should send some Nature Preschool expert witnesses to the next United Nations Climate Conference…

However, we can’t deny how much fun it was to start our week rolling in the snow, finding tracks, and exploring ice…and end it making mud cakes in t-shirts.

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Playing Bat & Moth, a game that teaches about echolocation.

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If you see snow, you must roll, and run, and wrestle.

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And roll and roll, and run and run

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Making star fractures in the ice

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Working together to try to free a stick. Ice is mighty strong.

The Oaks have been wanting to climb into this old foundation all year. They just weren’t sure if they could get out. Then suddenly at lunch this week, one popped in, and the rest followed. They taught each other different techniques for climbing out, and gave assists when needed.

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How to climb out.

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Up and down and in between.

Psychologist and child development theorist Erik Erikson proposed that around age five until about 12, children enter the developmental stage of industry (vs. inferiority). They actively work to develop competencies. They want to learn new skills and do things by themselves. They seek peer and adult approval and develop a sense of pride in their accomplishments. We see this every day, but especially at Hilltop Home, where the Oaks direct their own projects. They spring up from circle and story, ready to work.

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“Don’t help me. I can pull the wagon all by myself!”

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Taking turns to get some good mud. They have been busy moving prime soil into the forts.

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Time to take down the old fort.

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Demolition team.

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And time to rebuild.

We “started” our mapping unit this week. I put the “start” in quotes, because really, we have been working on mapping concepts all year. We use position and direction words as we explore Woodend. We have been naming landmarks, large and small. The Oaks know these woods, they know how the trails connect, how the stream runs to the pond, where the land rises and falls.

This week, we made a model (3D map) of Hilltop Home out of blocks. The Oaks looked at it and guessed what it could be, “Are we planning a shelter?” “Are we going to make towers at Hilltop?” “Can we build with blocks?”

Then one child noticed the circle of tiny tree cookies. “It’s where we do our meetings!” Then another hollered, “It’s Hilltop Home!” Together they looked at the model and figured out what each block was. “That’s the boat log!” “That’s the Feeling’s Den!” “That’s my fort!” The children took turns running to stand near landmarks as we pointed to them on the model. They helped each other if they got lost. “Look, it’s behind the two forts, over there.”

Then we told them the model had clues (stickers) to show them the locations of toy snakes hidden around Hilltop. Each child chose a sticker on the model, and then went to the real-life location to find the snake. Snakes were placed on the model, until all were found. The children then took turns hiding the snakes and marking them on the model for others to find.

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What could this be?

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It’s Hilltop Home!

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Searching for snakes

 

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Found it!

Symbol, scale, position and direction, number. Sense of place. The joy of exploration and discovery. Mapping offers such a rich terrain for learning.

Books we read this week (children’s favorites)

Rex Wrecks It

Sea Creatures

The Little House in the Big Woods (part of first chapter)

A Year Around the Great Oak by Gerda Muller

Flower Fairies Magical Doors

 

The Detective Post #15

News from the Outdoors

What a wacky weather week to be at Nature Preschool! This week at Audubon, the Detectives experienced it all! From snow, ice, mud, to sun!



On Monday, the classes took advantage of the snow-covered ground to take to trails, hunting for animal tracks! Since we cannot see the nocturnal animals we are studying during the day, it was exciting to spy raccoon and fox tracks by our pond!



On Tuesday, the Detectives practiced using their super sense of sight, like owls, in large scale, outdoor hide and seek game. Despite being a bit larger than a normal owl, our Detectives found some expert spots to hide!


By Wednesday, the warmer temperatures brought melting snow and muddy puddles from rain. The Detective’s investigated the fox den’s we have at Audubon, looking for clues of activity. We learned that all fox den’s have both an entrance and exit hole, so the kids started digging and building their own dens in the outdoor classroom and bamboo forest.


By Thursday, Sunny Ray had come out to play! The Detectives enjoyed a much warmer day, with the AM class a trip out to castle climber in the woods, while others made plaster tracks on the playground. The PM class enjoyed our weekly visit from Ms. Susan, where she brought in lots of owl ephemera to share. The Detectives could be seen up in the trees cooing, “Whoo cooks for you! Who cooks for you,” the call of the local, Bard Owl.


News from the Classroom

In the classroom, we kicked off our Birthday Bonanza week! The AM class celebrated three birthdays, and the afternoon class also celebrated two! Much of our indoor time this week was spent writing and illustrating birthday messages to each kiddo. The special, scented markers got a lot of use, and it was wonderful to see the students create such kind and thoughtful messages for their peers.


Even with all that excitement, we also had some intriguing nocturnal animal centers throughout the classroom. We focused on an owl’s super scene of sight, and a foxes super sense of hearing. In the dramatic play area, we created our own fox den, complete with fox costumes and all! We continued that theme in the discovery table and block area, where kids would build their own fox den’s with the blocks, and were able to play with toy animals in a small world set up.

In the lab table, we added child sized cheese graters and soap, where the detectives could work on creating their own, scented snow! This felt very relevant on Monday, but by Thursday felt a bit silly! We also played a ‘What’s Missing’ game on the carpet, to practice our super sense of sight, as well as worked on a new, fox floor puzzle. We also continued our exploration of light, with magnatiles on the light table. 


At the Raccoon table this week, the detectives got a chance to create both owls and foxes! They were able to paint and decorate folded paper towel rolls in the shape of an owl, as well as color, cut and tape their very own fox mask. The masks were quite popular, and we had more than a few “foxes” prancing around the classroom.


On Thursday, Ms. Susan brought in owl pellets for the PM class to dissect! The kids found small bones, getting to look at them through enlarged magnifying glasses. Ann-Mari brought in one of our favorite nocturnal animal books! The books requires lots of detective work, as the children hear a clue and get to listen to the noise the animal makes, before making their guess to which animal was hiding in the nighttime!

Books we Read

Eye Guess by Phyllis Limbacher Tildes

Night Sounds by Frank Gallo 


Weekly Top Hits

Flying Squirrel (I’m a little Teapot)

I saw something in the sky,

It doesn’t fly but it likes to glide,

It’s a grey-brown furry kite,

Soaring around through the night!

Foxy Fox (London Bridge)

I’m a foxy, foxy fox,

Foxy fox, foxy fox,

I’m a foxy, foxy fox,

I’m sly and fast!


Spoiler Alert: Next week we are continuing to learn about Nocturnal Animals and their super senses!