“That’s so cool! I love nature. It’s my favorite place in the whole world,” said an Oak today. I had just shown the children how water beads up on the leaves of jewelweed down by the pond. It reminded me of a t-shirt I saw recently of a tiny bird, that said, “The little things are the big things.” Here are these small humans, learning about a new plant, with wonder in their eyes. Here are their small muddy hands holding a giant worm so gently. Here are their fingers, pointing at a flash of red – “Cardinal!” Here they are, in shock and awe, watching a snake trying to eat a toad, and a frog trying to eat a dragonfly. Here they are, exploring, climbing, creating, discovering. Each moment, one could say, is a little thing. But they all add up to minds full of connections and hearts full of love. Each child, one could say, is a little thing. And yet, they will grow as surely as the seasons turn. And we will send them off into the wide world, with nature as a life-long friend.
On Friday, we went on a long hike to the Rock Creek side, turned left instead of right, and were glad we did!
We realized the path was leading to….a playground! Field trip within a field trip.
Once we left the playground, things got wild quickly!
With such an audience, the snake gave up. “We saved the toad!” But what will the snake eat? Nature is not all flowers.
Part of feeling at home in nature is knowing you have friends there. The Oaks became enthusiastic birders over the last two weeks, learning bird calls, sighting birds on the wing and in the trees. We made bird food, created bird-inspired art, and played bird games.
We played bird call hide and seek, with paired musical instruments. Bird one hides. Bird two calls and listens for the answering call, before trying to find her partner.
We wrapped up our Spring Journals in the Blair Native Plant Garden. Each child chose a plant and followed its changes over six weeks.