Mud season continues with our finicky weather. The children found the large hole under the crab apple tree to be an excellent place for digging. The sandbox is now ice free and suitable for a cleaner digging spot. We are hoping for sunshine and green grass to appear after vacation!We read the story Right Outside My Window to introduce this week’s art activity. The children selected mat board frames and created views of what one might see when looking out the window. They saw gardens, animals, people, etc. These works of art will be displayed during the last day art show.We continued to learn about the various reptiles, and played a near and far game, where we would be near or far away from reptiles placed around the room, including snakes, lizards, turtles and tortoises, and alligators and crocodiles. We read How to Hide a Crocodile about reptile use of camouflage to hide from predators and prey. Some children then colored reptiles hiding in camouflage environments.We celebrated our second sixth birthday of the year with peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. The birthday girl passed out her birthday treats, then held the globe to orbit the sun while we named the seasons and counted her years on earth. Happy 6th birthday, birthday girl!For Spanish with Zeanny we continued to learn about body parts, numbers, and the members of a familia with some stories, songs, and games. Zeanny read Las Familias and Me Madre es Fantastica. We then did a matching game. Zeanny described where each member of the family was, and the children took turns selecting the family member and placing them on their corresponding pictures.Tuesday students had some fun in the afternoon with the stepping stones before heading home. With the rainy day keeping us inside, we had some energy to expend!The dramatic play area has been transformed into a camp site, and the children have been loving it! They enjoyed turning off the lights to make it nighttime. They slept in the tent, caught fish in the pond, built a fire pit, prepared food over the fire, and roasted hot dogs and marshmallows on sticks. They had so much fun together camping out.We introduced the terms FAIR and EQUAL. First, everyone was given a T-shirt in Lyn’s size, so it would be equal. We discovered quickly that just because it fit Lyn, didn’t mean it fit everyone else. When putting the first T-shirt on a student, a second student pointed out that it was not that child’s size. We realized that just because it was equal, did not mean that it was fair. We then told all the children that if they could reach the stickers taped up high on the wall by standing on the floor, then they could have one. We found that most of the students could not reach those stickers. Although this was equal, because everyone had a turn to stand on the floor and try, it was not fair. We asked what we could do to make it so everyone could get a sticker, and they suggested standing on a stool. When the children who were unable to reach the stickers on their own were able to reach by standing on a stool, we recognized that this was not equal, but it was fair, as not everyone needed a stool to reach the stickers, but some did. Finally, we took turns briefly trying on Lyn’s glasses and asked if everyone should have a pair just like them to make things equal, and they agreed that it was fair for Lyn to have glasses because she needs them, while others did not, so not having glasses if you don’t need them is fair. The children defined EQUAL as everyone gets the same, and FAIR as everyone gets what they need.On Thursday morning we did some yoga movements with the Kira Willey CD, Dance for the Sun. The children had so much fun doing sun salutations, downward dog, frog hops, etc., that they requested three yoga series. It felt good to stretch and move our bodies.We continued to practice songs for the end of year performance with Susan, and she began discussing the various props and roles that students could play during the performance. After vacation the kindergarten students will become involved in planning and preparing for the performance.
For Friday science we read the story The Penny. In the story, a father was sad as he took apart the sailboat named the Penny, and later told his daughter stories about how his grandfather had built the sailboat and how the father had sailed it as a young boy. We then discussed the sink and float activity we did several weeks ago, and the children recalled which materials floated, and which sank. They recalled that although the metals sank, the one that was shaped like a bowl did not, unless it got water in it, and although rubber materials sank, the bracelet that was filled with air did not. The children then used a variety of materials to construct their very own boats, including wax, ping-pong balls, aluminum foil, tape, wooden popsicle sticks, bottles & plastic containers, straws, and pipe cleaners. The challenge was to see how many marbles their boats could hold. They discovered that some of the most basic boats floated, while more complex boats sank or tipped. We probed to see what the concerns were with the boats that were sinking and how to change the next boat so that it would stay afloat. Many of the children were very engaged with the activity and enjoyed creating and testing a variety of boats throughout most of the morning.