One of my favourite times of year at Canyon School is when the grass hasn't been cut for a few days, and the dandelions are everywhere. 'Weeds,' maybe, but also colourful, beautiful, important for the pollinators and ripe for collecting and playing creatively with. We tried a craft this week called 'Hapazome,' (aka hammering plants into cloth to transfer the dye). The kids created some sweet hanging decorations to take home!
This week jackets were off, sun hats were on, and we revelled in the just-right-warmth. We laid on our backs and looked at the clouds and watched a woodpecker. The kids tried out our new binoculars. They are a pretty cool kind of children's binocular that 'auto focus' so there's no need for fiddling with a focus dial. You can check them out here. I would recommend!
There were games of hide and seek, which, if you've ever played hide and seek with 3 year olds, you know it's guaranteed to be hilarious and very cute.
The bucket-pulley activity continues to dominate play time. Incredible cooperation and now we have to walk down the trail as if through a minefield, around ropes and buckets going up and down. Sometimes the kids just sit calmly and hold their buckets up in the air for a while (an interesting way to relax and contemplate life?)
Just holding buckets in the air!
Kid conference. I love when this happens, and you can just keep an eye out on the children but leave them to their own hilarious conversation, invention, imagination. I think they were roasting marshmallows. It was the end of the day and every cluster of kids was giggling and being very silly.
At snack time there is always a chant of 'story, story, story!' and this week we added in the animal guessing game--a challenge of these youngsters to a) not reveal the name of the animal on their card b) think about the answers to the questions posed (i.e.: is your animal and land or water animal? and c) to actually pose questions for their friends to consider. It's a longish game when 9 kids each choose an animal, much patience required, and when the energy is right everyone loves it!
On Friday we embarked on a treasure hunt of sorts, to notice small, beautiful things that caught our eyes. Some of the children kept the same things for the whole walk, and some changed their items up many times. Everyone felt very proud of their collections!
Just lounging in the trees...
This week our older Nature Explorers embarked on a 'small square study,' picking a very small patch of ground to fence off. They turned into great observers, writing down or drawing everything they could find in their plots. Oregon grape, deer scat, feathers, tiny tree sprouts, bits of fir needles...We plan to keep tabs on our plots to notice what kind of changes take place. The big kids also practiced with flint and steel, worked on their shelters and tried out a 'nature scategories' group game. See you next week!