Chickadees, 26 May
Making organic paints. With a little gelatin as a binder we used pieces of charcoal, blueberries, beets, flowers and grass for paint making. They loved using the pestle and mortar or stick and bowls to crush the materials to make their paints. We also supplied oil pastels which some used to create an interesting effect contrasting the watery paints. We used the book "The Organic Artist for Kids". If you would like to explore natural paints further here is a link to a great resource with recipes and ideas. https://www.thehippyhomemaker.com/diy-natural-herbal-earth-paints/
Storytelling through art. We shared a story about a child that uses paints to tell a story and recreate her dream of Spring and bring it to life. Some of us shared stories illustrated in the artworks we created.
Labybugs. These lovely welcome visitors were a source of great curiosity and fascinating conversation about the differences between male and female ladybugs and whether they are pollinators. These young scientists had such inquisitive questions and knew so much about these sweet little bugs. Fortunately they didn't fly away at all today so we had a lot of time to examine them up close.
Robins and nests. The watchful presence of a robin drew us to its nest. We also found a nearby fallen nest which gave us the opportunity to closely examine nests and discuss how they are made. As we were steps away I took the group to see the robin nest atop my door. The abundance of new flowers on the street also led to some lovely discussion about flowers. Abigail shared that tulips are her favourite flower.
Stick wrapping and making weaving frames. We gathered sticks and started work on making a frame for weaving. The beautiful yarns were a source of inspiration and the search for sticks and breaking them to the size we wanted was fun for all.
Spring. We discussed our favourite things about Spring. Some offered; "the season", "being able to throw water balloons", "using an umbrella", "the different foods", "the smell of flowers" and "the butterflies".
Creative expression and exploration - artistic work with paints we made, oil pastels and pieces of charcoal.
Learning about pigments and looking creatively at the nature around us for the colours they can provide in paint making.
Balance. Leah found a secret pit and setup a balance log for everyone to try, it was a bit slippery after the rain yesterday, so this was a risky challenge but they all wanted to have a go.
Tying knots and coordination in stick wrapping.
Staying together and looking out for each other and following instructions when exploring as a group.
Social skills, accommodating each other. Astrid became something of a ladybug guardian picking up ladybugs and giving them to others that had never held one, kindly giving everyone plenty of time to enjoy the ladybugs. Likewise with our paints they navigated sharing and asking each other permission to use the paints they made they were so considerate and respectful of each other, no involvement from the teacher was required at any time. They are a very thoughtful, kind group.
What colour paint did you make, what did you use to make it?
What did you discover about nests and robins?
Did you hold a lady bug today? Did it tickle on your hand? Did you notice what colour it was?
Did you buy magic seed soap scrub from Leah's shop?
Adventures with Jessie's crew!
Today's class was beautifully warm which meant all the bugs were coming out to play. After some exploring and dandelion picking we arrived at the spot. There is an ant colony nearby that we have been watching/studying and catching ants from them these past few weeks. Today we created our own ant colonies and made rooms and tunnels for the different types of ants.
Then we made some leaf and flower beetles to attack our colonies so our soldiers ants could fight them off. Even though we were all building ant colonies each one was different ! Some of the children continued to play with their ant colonies making up stories and moving the food around. During free time, there was tool work and fort building. Lots of stick gathering and adjusting of the fort to make it nice and closed off. It was a great day learning about ants and working together to build a fort.
What were the different types of ants that live in a colony? What kind of special rooms did you make? Did you help build the fort ? Which tree was your favorite one to climb today ?