The Outdoor Classroom
We've always been a school that values the learning that happens outside - in the woods, in our fruit orchard, and on our hill. Bringing our desks outside this year makes it even easier. We all pause for regular bird identification. We are getting even better at reading the clouds to predict when rain is coming. We can let out kids run around for a 5 or 10 minute break without going through the process of putting on outdoor shoes and jackets. We have plenty of space to stretch, dance, and play.
Leaves and Leaves and Leaves - Oh My!
This last week felt like it was all about the leaves from nesting in the leaves for a Nancy story to sweeping the leaves that keep blowing into our outdoor classroom. Our youngest mathematicians used wooden cats and geese to tell number stories on Wednesday while sitting in maple leaf piles, and then we all got to play seek and find for the rest of the week with our wooden creatures. We read The Oak and the Acorn, a lovely story that traces the life of an oak tree. Our PK and K kids took an oak walk, collected leaves, and made rubbings of them. We carefully pulled apart some acorns to look at the interior of this nut and talked about how it is a seed. Plans have been hatched to see if we can get some acorns to sprout for us.
The Human Body
We read The Magic School Bus Explores the Senses and Inside the Brain this week. During our home days, children experimented with how having one eye or two eyes open can impact depth perception. Interestingly, a number of them found that one eye open worked better for them, giving us an interesting point of conversation. We talked about our nervous system and did an experiment on our nerves to see where we have the most sensory nerves. Ask your child what we learned! With both of these experiments, we talked about the importance of repetition in science experiments and how pooling our class data gave us lots more information.
Theresa's Reflections on 3rd - 6th Graders
So, we continue on our path towards a sustainable schedule. Last week, we launched history, and it went well! The kids are watching “Liberty’s Kids” which is a remarkable historical cartoon about early American history. We will talk about the show on Mondays.
We also launched writing. The kids had been writing regularly, but starting last week, the kids have a log to keep track of their writing and weekly assignments. We will be having a publishing party in no time.
This coming week, we are going to start spelling words and Science. For spelling, I will assign the words on Tuesdays, and give the kids a quiz the following Monday. For Science, there will be a weekly reading and an at home experiment.