Themes Explored and Skills Embraced:
Dandelion Bread. The beautiful dandelions were at their best today, so we celebrated the humble dandelion by making dandelion bread. We collected the flowers of many dandelions, broke up the petals and mixed this into our dough. This activity created a sense of majesty about the dandelions, and offered up opportunities to practice numeracy skills; counting to 20 together as we took turns mixing the dough and counting quantities as we prepared the dough. We shared a story about a boy who shared his bread with birds that would visit him, each taking a golden thread from his scarf when they came. Archer was excited to make dandelion bread to be able to share with the birds next week.
Dandelion Art. We discovered that pressing the head of a dandelion flower onto paper worked exceptionally well to transfer the yellow colour, almost as solid as a crayon. Likewise, the leaves, for transferring green. The children were each amazed when they gave it a go, often gasping at their first try. It was as if we had discovered a magical secret of this abundant flower. Some beautiful artistic works with accompanying stories resulted.
Dandelion measurement. The tall dandelions inspired discussion of measurement, using them to measure height and comparing lengths. Neil measured our heights with the dandelions he found and Olive found (constructed by linking stems together) a massive dandelion almost as tall as her!
Bugs. Bug research and bug capture was very popular. A big fallen log gave us many insects, especially ants to investigate. Discussion about the types of bugs and their habitats arose.
Tool work. Some of the big logs in the area were popular for team construction projects. Occasionally, these works uncovered new areas for bug research.
Textile and weaving/wrapping practice making butterflies. We extended the weaving/wrapping skills we have been developing with a textile project making butterflies. The repetitive action and coordination of this activity was very calming and peaceful and they each seemed smitten with their delightful creations, immediately bringing them to life in play.
Weaving with handmade looms. We made looms of cardboard and wool and practiced weaving on these to create a symbolic tapestry representing memories and feelings about forest school. This sit spot activity is a development of the weaving skills we have been developing in recent weeks. The children found this somewhat meditative as they sat and weaved repeating the steps out loud to themselves as they went.
How long was the really long dandelion Olive found?
Did you have fun making Dandelion bread? Are you looking forward to tasting the bread next week? Are you planning on sharing yours with the birds?
What bugs did you find? Did you capture any? What did you notice about the bugs you investigated?
Did you make a butterfly?