Despite much rain and even more mosquitoes, nature kindergarten had another successful week. Besides the butterfly garden planting described on this week's first blog entry, we had plenty of time to explore outside.
Even our turkey friends are getting used to us being out there.
We started the wrap up process of learning tree parts by taking our nature backpacks out and drawing some observations of the four main tree parts by studying our beautiful oak tree classroom.
After checking in on our puffballs, we agreed that decomposition is still going strong.
Branching out is an important part of nature kindergarten, so the class had some play time where they could choose between two different locations: the natural play circles and the fallen tree forest.
Even our more traditional station choices had a tree twist.
Our tree parts finale was the creation of our own tree using materials from nature. The class decided to use rocks from the rock pile, larger sticks, and already fallen leaves to make and label our own tree on the forest floor underneath the oak tree classroom.
Once our tree was complete, we finally took some time to discuss and practice the play expectations of the rock pile. It was definitely an exciting place to discover.
And of course, we enjoyed the "running of the kindergarteners" down our hill. Not as dangerous as the running of the bulls, but just as exciting.
Here are a few samples of the over twenty species of plants planted in our young butterfly garden. Besides doing a little non-fiction research into these varieties, we will be moving towards adding a new element to the garden through a new service project next week. Looking forward to showing that progress next week and moving on to tree needs and our study of leaves.