Musings from the Educators
Alix: The old saying “in like a lion, out like a lamb” surely held true for our March! We started out with typically stormy March weather and ended with warm spring temperatures. After months of working wearing bulky mittens and gloves, it has been a pleasure to see how the children’s dexterity has improved. Now that their hands are in thinner gloves and mittens (and sometimes nothing at all), their knot tying (and untying), carabiner clipping (and unclipping) and all small motor tasks have developed leaps and bounds. With spring in the air, and hands freed, many children have spontaneously returned to hand holding while walking to our classroom. This is a testament to the bonds that have been created over the last 7 months, and the growing community of learners that is emerging. The lighter days and warmer temps has instilled a new energy in everybody, as well as in the forest around us – it will be exciting to see what discoveries are made in the next few months!
Heather: March seemed to bring us to together as a community, and closer also to our discoveries. Our eyes, noses, and ears have found a plethora of exciting Spring developments! With frogs croaking, bushes budding and flowers unfolding, the group instinctively bonds and connects as a group of learners. In fact, the variety of ways in which the Roots connected with each shows serious social development, growth in languages and ecologoical literacy. I cannot drum up half the times we learned from each other about the species around us, or how the weather, sky, or seasons work. With less trepidation about being wet and cold, and less cumbersome layers to inhibit our hold on nature’s treasures and jungle gyms, I believe the group will find even more depth in our play/learning as we go.
Themes from March:
In Like a Lion: March started off with some particularly harsh weather. We saw high winds and heavy rains that sparked a lot of interest in water – where it comes from, and where it’s going. We took advantage of its abundance and dabbled with the water cycle a bit.
Point Holmes Field Trip: It was a perfect day for a trip to the beach! The Roots climbed on the large rocks that prevent erosion, dug in the sand, explored the shore and tide pools and enjoyed a healthy snack in our first gloriously sunny day. They showed signs of interested and previous knowledge in the tide pool biodiversity when they used a field guide and scavenger hunt to guide their search for a variety of creatures. They got down on all fours for crabs, chitons and more. We extend great thanks to all the parents how came and shared their knowledge of the Salish Sea.
Colours: painting, mixing and finding them! Identifying colours in our changing spring environment was really fun this month. In finding purple, pink, magenta, and white flowers, brilliant greens budding everywhere, we were inspired to paint and play with colour ourselves. Here are some of the experiments and results from our learning about colours and painting techniques.
Community of Learners Here are some photos that show the strength of the relationship between the Roots – with each other as well as with their environment. They are noticing changes in our forest, and take steps to help keep our forest in good shape. They collaborate and wonder together, and share their knowledge with each other. They invite each other to participate, and listen respectfully to their friends’ ideas. Even though we had a short March (with the last two weeks being our spring break), there were so many examples of this captured by the camera – too many to include all of them. Such as noticing fragrant flowers popping up on the side of the path, and working together to help repair the path around the bridge, just to name two.
Continual Challenge: With fewer bulky clothes and hand wear, the children are testing their limits and capabilities anew. It’s amazing how much they have developed over the winter!
Pancake Breakfast To celebrate Spring, our maple syrup harvest, the beautiful weather and the strength of group and families at having made it through winter, we had a pancake breakfast. We encourage opportunities for safe food sharing at potlucks like this one where allergens are avoided and everyone participates in the making of the food! Everyone contributed fruit to our ‘friendship fruit salad’, and the beautiful rainbow and diversity of fruit well represented our differences and community 🙂 It was fun to have some parents and families join us in our daily routine, and the children really enjoyed having them along to show their school off to.