Building Nests and Other Things
Maybe we're all being inspired by the birds, but there was quite a bit of nesting going on at Country Classroom this last week. The older kids totally re-built one of our favorite shelters. By the time they were done with it, it was bigger, with a better roof, and they even brought in loppers to make sure there were not too many pokey branches. I love how all of our kids love to build and are actively changing the world around them. They create castles, race tracks, and dog mansions with blocks. They drag around huge sticks and boards to make seesaws and bridges. They get an idea, and they're off, finding what will work along the way.
I got to build a brand new skill when one of our students helped teach everyone in the older cohort the basics of roping. She was a patient and encouraging teacher. I caught a traffic cone!
Tracy's PK-2nd Grade Reflections
We're studying weather as our big April theme. Each child is tracking daily weather on a graph. We have been acting out the travels of a water droplet (aka the water cycle). Of all the -ation's we're learning about (evaporation, condensation, precipitation, transpiration, perspiration, sublimation), urination predictably got the biggest reaction. We made mini water cycles in plastic bags that we taped to the windows where we can observe evaporation, condensation, and precipitation happening each day (especially when it's sunny). We read "This Book Might Blow You Away" and got excited about all the wacky weather that can happen around the world. We got a wide spectrum of exciting weather ourselves this week - freezing rain ("Hail! It's hailing!" was the initial call.), snow, strong winds, rain, and sun.
In writing, we've been delving into poetry. Blue on Blue, When the Wind Blows, Vivid, Grumbles from the Forest - Fairy-tale Voices with a Twist, and Summer Song all provided us with different examples of poetry. We noticed what we found memorable in different poems like strong descriptions, repetition, humor, unexpected words, alliteration, and onomatopoeia.
Theresa's 3rd-6th Grade Reflections
This week was lovely.
The big kids at Country Classroom re-discovered the woods. The kids had forgotten how much fun it is to make shelters. They kept making this one bigger and bigger so that it could withstand light rain while keeping everyone adequately socially distanced. They were excited to think about the smaller kids discovering their work the next day.
The students are working on 30-second oral reports in history and writing. Kids are writing about Albert Einstein, Rosa Parks, and the history of the Corgie. We will be recording these and sending them into a history podcast for kids called, "The Past and the Curious." They have a monthly segment that features a young person sharing a 30-second report.
We just started a new book, "The One and Only Ivan." It is about a gorilla that lives as an attraction in a shopping mall. We are still getting to know the main characters.