Power in Numbers

As I look through the photographs from this past week, I am moved by the amount of teamwork that occurred. Each day brought new groupings of children; children that had not previously played together found themselves working towards a common goal. It is always an exciting time of year as we see the children begin to engage in cooperative play. Play takes on new meanings and reaches new levels, building new thought processes and connections. Children influence each other’s schemas- sometimes in small ways, sometimes in very large ways.

Think about your own lives and the people who make up your ‘team’. How did you become a member of this team? What is your role on this team? How does your role constantly shift and change? Are you open to letting others influence you? Do you influence others? Perhaps some days it is hard to be on the team but hopefully most days it is easy, enlightening and fun!

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Watching mason bees fly in and out of their nesting tubes. Children are captivated by these darling insects. They are very happy to learn that these bees do not sting!

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Learning how to attend to a task is not easy. It has taken months of practice and maturity to come to a point where we can all engage in a meaningful conversation, without distraction. There is value in being able to listen attentively and keep our bodies still.

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Adam, Alison and Kingston are serving up some delicious treats in their restaurant. Heidi helps to keep the play going by participating in their imaginary game, asking questions and allowing time for the play to develop.

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Everyone is busy collecting pieces for their own project. There were some tough negotiations, angry voices and tears as well as generous sharing and kind words. The play soon shifts and suddenly the children come to realize it is better to pool their resources.

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Miles, Hannah and Damian work together to push this log. There seems to be no particular goal in terms of placement; only that it is fun to push something heavy and no one could manage it alone.

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This small group experiments with tubes and tunnels. For a while they build independently but soon children are working together to attach pieces and pour rocks using a funnel.

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The children learn quickly that is speeds things up in the hand washing procedure if they help each other hold the tap down, get soap and push the dryer button.

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Hannah and Kaya work on their own projects but together they formed the idea of creating this type of art.

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Investigating the clover patch, the buddies spend a moment together observing the colour and texture.

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These buddies are investigating how garlic grows.

Our Thompson Elementary School buddies were a wonderful addition to our week! We cannot post the many photos taken but when looking through them, again I was amazed at how far our children have come in their ability to work with others. The big buddies had been to the farm last week, participating in a program with the Richmond Schoolyard Society. They learned about mason bees, which is exactly what our Nature School students learned this week too. So, together, they shared their knowledge- big kids teaching little kids  and little kids teaching big kids. They observed together, wrote journals, played games and did a cool mason bee art project. It was a lovely day!

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Claire sketches what she sees in the garden. She is developing her observation skills, refining her fine motor skills and making connections.

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Big buddies help little buddies write their initials and names using sticks.

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These two are pretending to be a pollen and nectar ball inside the mason bee tube. The game is a race- the female bee must collect nectar, pollen and mud to fill her tube as fast as she can.

‘Till the next post,

Emily