Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Timberwolf Trail - Week 12 - 2016-17

Last week, we focused on the gifts nature gives us every time we take our classroom outside, so this week, it was only natural to focus on giving back. With our mouse houses out of the picture, we made snow structures earlier int he week that we would be decorating with various food items for our animal friends. However, Mother Nature brought temperatures back above freezing so most of the snow had melted away, so we altered our plans. Instead, we spent a little bit of time inside making our popular peanut butter toilet paper roll feeders. On the menu today: corn kernels.

After creating some feeders, it was off to the woods to place them for our forest friends.

Then, keeping with the spirit of giving back, we took a nice stroll around the perimeter of our land and searched for trash, plastic, and anything else we could find that didn't belong in nature. I was happy to see that there wasn't much to find.

Along the way, we did find plenty to keep us interested. It was pretty cool to see how excited the class was to explore the little frozen river that forms along the back of the school near the service drive. They enjoyed cracking the ice with sticks, but LOVED cracking it with their boots.

They even managed to create a string of children "ice hiking" together.

When all was said and done, we found ourselves at our natural play area where we celebrated our nature cleanup with another round of Stick Champions before letting loose on this frigid day with natural play.

The boys worked on their log"boat," even connecting it to the Gingerbread Pirates book by Kristin Kladstrup we had read earlier in the day. Of course, when the girls climbed aboard, the boys deserted to their nearby "island."

I enjoyed this wintry Wednesday, but was mostly encouraged by one main thing: even though temperatures were in the high teens and the wind chill made it even colder, not one child asked to go inside because they were cold. Not one!  These amazing kids are growing stronger, smarter, and or resilient with each outdoor experience. What great gifts nature gives!

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