Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Timberwolf Trail - Week 22 - 2016-17 Edition

Two Wednesdays. . .first Wednesday of paternity leave. 71 degrees and clear skies.

Last Wednesday. . .still on paternity leave. Cloudy, cold, and about 4 inches of snow.

Today. . .back from paternity leave. 40 degrees with 60 mile per hour wind gusts.

Welcome to Wisconsin folks!

Still, spring was in the air. Not wanting my students to be blown away, we spent a chunk of our morning thinking spring.After reading And Then It's Spring, by Julie Fogliano, we brainstormed things that reminded us of spring and created a SPRING foldable. From rain to baseball, planting to bike riding, and green grass to trampolines, all students had a plethora of ideas to choose from when creating their own foldable.

Then, we zoomed in on a sure sign of spring - birds, We reviewed our bird field guides and introduced a new classroom job, the bird buddies. This job is two-fold and shared between two students. First, the bird buddies must check our classroom bird feeders and see if seed or suet needs to be added.  Secondly, throughout the day, they are in charge of checking the feeders for any birds. If a bird is found, they can sue the field guides, provided bird magnets, or an adult to help them identify the bird and add it to our "Birds We've Observed" poster. We also shared the newest addition to our classroom - the Bird Photo Booth. I haven't set it up in our outdoor classroom yet, but we reviewed the website and are looking forward to meeting our bird visitors up close and personal. Feel free to check out and see what it is all about.

As we have studied birds and been lucky to have a few bald eagle sightings, I have noticed their special interest in birds of prey. So, we took that interest and turned it into action. After reviewing a short video about owl pellets and then watching a real barred owl cough one up on a video, we dissected our own pellets. The excitement about finding bones was amazing. Not wanting to spend all our time inside, we postponed the "pellet put together" until next week, when we will work on piecing together the bones we found.

It was time to head outside and fill our feeders for the first time this year as a class. Hard to see in this picture, but we have eight feeders outside our classroom windows that dispense seed and suet.

During natural play, we tried to avoid being blown away. It was gusty and a bit chilly, but time outside is always well spent in nature kindergarten. Next week, our friends from the Retzer Nature Center will join us as we talk about nature "waking up."

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