Sunnybrook Montessori School

Montessori preschool & kindergarten in New Hampshire's North Country

Winter Shadows

Monday students read about Geoffrey the groundhog who came out of his burrow on February 2nd to predict the weather. A shadow means 6 more weeks of winter, and no shadow means early spring! We looked at some photos of some cool shadow art (by Tim Noble & Sue Webster – the photos we saw were child appropriate, but CAUTION some of their work is not) that molded piles of trash or wood to create sculptures that, when a light shone on them, made shadows of people or animals. We traced the children who were interested in being traced and they colored their “shadows.”

shadow artboy shadowpink hairstrike a poseblue pants, black shirtstars

We played lots of animal games outside – animal charades, animal movement races, and hibernation, adaptation, or migration. We played Simon Says and sang movement songs. We went sledding and sled boarding on our mini snowhill and began building a snowpile in front of the igloo to shape the entrance. We made snow castles, rolled around, pulled friends in sleds, and had snow battles.

migratingdeer yardottersslithering like snakesSimon Says put your hands upflying south for the winterpouncing foxesotter sliding into the waterhuddling penguins

surfinglittle red riding hoodspeed racerbalancingbluerolling like a sushi rolla big partysled trainbalancedsurfer girlgirls in sink holesshowing Michelle all the beautiful colored ice collectedsnow cakesloading up snow for the igloo entrancesnow surfingtaking a friend for a sled ridehappy sleddingsmilesclimbgoing for a ridesnow castleigloo progress

We watched several videos of foxes hunting in winter, which many found quite hilarious, and learned how they use magnetic north and their keen hearing to catch prey. Did you know they can rotate their ears independently and hear rodents tunneling under the snow up to 40 feet away? We discussed why they jump way up to dive down headfirst and the children had some great insights and ideas about why foxes hunt the way they do.

pouncing foxesexamining a fox skeleton

Susan and Michelle took groups of 6 students at a time snow shoeing in the back field while the other children used colored water in spray bottles to color the snow. The adventurers had a glorious time trekking into the deep snow and discovering some wonders of nature. They spied bird nests and even a robin (?) that should have been long gone.

breaking trailwhat do you see?all packed downgetting ready to gowavingheading out on an adventurea cold birdexaming a findreturninghappy trekkersfollowing the leadertaking a snow naploving snowshoeingstomping alongreturninga tired troopercolorful seatsyellow snowicecream standbluecolored wallyellow and green

Some children acted out The Mitten by Jan Brett.

the animalsAlong came a moleA hedgehog shuffled in

During Sign Language with Rose we practiced all the animal signs we have learned so far, then learned some farm animal signs. We learned pig, cow, horse, chicken, and sheep. First Rose made the signs and we guessed what they were. We guessed almost all of them with minimal prompting. Rose also taught us the sign for butterfly and a rhyming song about butterflies flying away.


Kindergarten students played some games of “What’s Missing?” in small groups, hiding Cuisenaire rods in their hands and placing the addend on the table so their fellow students could determine which rod was in the hand that would be needed to make the sum.

sums of 7painting partnersa challenging puzzlepouringreaders100'spegsredcarefullyall the peoplebuilding the treechalk artsnowmobilinghot chocolate for freetransfer workmatchingnumber memorysnowmobile in the snowalphabet BINGO with Laurapuzzlenumber worktigerrock sortingpartner paintingdrawingfamiliesspinning topscastle puzzlegroup of artistsTacky the Penguingroups of 10pentagonbead chainstower and stairsartcuttingyellow, red, orange, pinksunshine, clouds, and a rainbow

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