Tuesday, January 15, 2013

From Moles to Rabbits!

Boy-were we happy to see the sun today! It was a brilliant day in the Northwest with one of the TOP kids complaining that the sun was too bright! So we got to begin the day-setting up in the meadow and playing ball on the field. Kids were given the choice of making snowmen or running around. We had about 4 children choose art. We have art infrequently at TOP as the weather makes doing art difficult. But when offered it is rarely required. It is a free-form kind of project-with some of the children following the prompt completely and others choosing another way to create. This is all fine with us and developmentally correct.

We practiced some songs during circle time. We sang the Chubby Snowman and then when many of the children were noticing sounds-an airplane, a siren, a bleating goat-we talked about our sense of hearing. This is referring back to our 5 senses curriculum we followed in the fall. The kids helped Teacher Ann sing the 5 Senses song. Many remembered the funny hand motions as well!

We spent some time during circle time talking about appropriate circle time behavior and how the older, more experienced kids can help the younger kids by modeling good listening skills.

After singing the TOP song-it was time to go hiking. The Yellow group went off to go see the rabbits. While stopping by the toilet for a quick pee-the kids found a dead mole. We usedthe interesting find to have a science lesson about moles and underground animals. We were able to closely observe the moles long tail ("looks like a worm"), good digging claws and long nose. Also a fur coat. Then we went and got out Peter Rabbit and held him. We compared "same and different" with the two animals who both have homes underground. One child said that they both had the same colored coat-grey. Their tails were different but they both had long claws for digging. Everyone got to hold Peter and we all thought he was very soft.

The yellow group then went back to a favorite climbing spot with many logs on the ground. There was a lot of learning how to climb on, around and slide down the smaller tree.

The blue group hiked through the woods having a fun time with snack and stories while sitting on a log. They then burst out into the sun on the meadow, getting very warm while swinging on the tire swing and making mud balls. By the time it was lunch-many of the kids had jackets and mittens off. Lunch was out in the back meadow where the sun is. All of the kids got a turn pulling or pushing the wagon one of the ways.

There is so much to learn at TOP. What will we find on Thursday?

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