I think it is working!

I love the way the children are being together- they are laughing a lot; they are goofy; they are at times completely and utterly hyper. And, they are also really sensitive, kind, curious, intelligent, creative and exploratory. We are seeing them eager to seek new challenges in all areas They are questioning  ideas and philosophies. They are using ” I wonder” questions between themselves. They are fighting for what they believe is true and fair. They take time to think through their ideas. They take risks when sharing their hypothesis about things big and small. They look closely at the world around them. They are doing great work here at Nature School!

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Much to my delight, I am not the only one interested in this bee gathering pollen; 3 children are by my side, completely captivated by this bee’s work.

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This group is looking and noticing the changing tree structure.

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Ken and Damon pick up a stick and start a game of London Bridge all on their own. If more people join in, will they follow the same rules we usually abide by?

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Ty wanders off with Heidi and returns with some tree sap on this rock. He asks me to smell it but “not touch it, it’s sticky.”

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Kate and crew notice salmon berries are now out- it is glorious to watch the seasonal changes which are both predictable and potentially unpredictable at the same time.

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Children are asked to choose a book that interests them, find a page of particular importance to them and put a sticky note on it. Then we write their ideas down and will re- visit the page later on.

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Hayden is flipping through this field guide, deciding what is of interest to him. We do not yet know where we will take this but it is a good start to finding out what captures their attention.

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Zoliekha helps to scribe Zoya and Lorraine’s ideas. Showing children we care about their ideas builds confidence and relationship.

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I am not sure there is a plan for this branch but look at the teamwork involved. The teachers happily stand back and watch this exercise in cooperation.

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Ariel and Araceli use the log to practice their balancing skills, while playing and holding another stick- this is multi tasking!

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Yohan and Ayleen encourage each other to scale this fence, a new challenge for these two children.

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Heidi, game master that she is, introduces the Owls to a new game. With a blindfold on, the person must listen to where the shaker sound is coming from. This game develops awareness and trust.

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Wee Walk Day! Zoë, Quinn and Grandma are ready to begin their day.

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Ken’s daddy, taking a moment to be with his newborn while he watches Ken play a game. So lovely.

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Leap, Levi, leap!

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Annabelle tries her hand at Taiko drumming. Look at the intense expression on her face.

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Owls dip markers in water to make a watercolour drawing. Some children seem to be mostly interested in watching the colours combine while others are determined to create an idea. It is important to value all parts of the creative process.

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Heidi throws a hoola hoop into the grassy field and William runs to go and retrieve it. Soon, other children are playing too- games are a great way to connect children to work towards a common goal.

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Nika has a lot to say about her art work- she is telling a story through picture.

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Kaya’s daddy, Bob, visits Nature School with his cruiser. He is sharing information about safety with the children. What a proud moment for Kaya!

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An unintentional activity comes from reading this book this week. The children notice the expression on the character’s faces. We discuss feelings and how to express feelings through art. The children reveal their intuitive skills as they  capture the essence of this drawings, paying particular attention to their facial expression and features.

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Stemming from our discussion about that book, the Eagles are asked to draw their own people; using their skills to show how a character might be feeling.

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Heidi teaches Ken how to whittle safely. It takes time and patience to teach a new skill, especially one with some element of risk but the rewards are tremendous. What will Ken take away from this experience?

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Playing house, then a concert show with stick microphones, then  pretending to be at Nature School   (yes, that’s right… pretending to be where they actually are!), Hannah, Kaya and Nell have a joyous playtime.

‘Till the next post,

Emily