|Happy President’s Day!
Park day was full or sprinkles and sunshine. We spent time in the tree house, exploring the pond, thinking about what makes the water look green, watching ducks, crows, hummingbirds, and others we couldn’t identify. We counted and spelled names along with the word ‘and’ with each push of the swing. Our afternoon was spent journal writing, and experimenting with sticks in the waterfall. When a stick got stuck we used teamwork to solve the problem. We even inspired another child to test their own collected sticks. (I’m happy her mother encouraged it. I often overhear “no, you’ll get wet, hurt, or dirty” on park days from non TKGers). Thanks MJ for supporting us on yet another beautiful park day and embracing our Gardeners in getting wet and dirty.
Throughout the week we compiled a camping supply list, built campgrounds, discussed animals that lived where we are camping, and touched on manmade habitats. Thursday students were in the mood for giving. Their kittens made presents and delivered them to each other. Each gift was personal to the student receiving. Greenie even received a twin and broccoli flavored candy among other gifts. And the (Lego) wrappers and boxes were all recycled!
We continue to work on our clean up procedure. Students have been excited about checking out materials and we are working on keeping it to the bag minimum. We have been discussing ways to minimize what needs to be cleaned up. “Keeping kitty workshop items in their box when other plans are out” was added to our agreements list. Often the boxes are dumped out, but this way has proven helpful. It is an ongoing process and students have been coming up with some great ideas on making clean up, check out, and going home smoother. Thursday was our best clean up/check out day yet. Spontaneously, “The Claw” came out. It didn’t know what belonged where. It often needed to be readjusted at my elbow, guided, and even frozen to allow more time. Students worked together in getting to items before I did, as well as transporting boxes as a team. We had a blast playing while transitioning.
I’ve begun meeting with students for conferences this week. We’ve discussed everything from wanting students to not be sick to personal goals and feeling about our classroom. I truly valued these meetings and think every school should have teacher student meetings. In fact, our plans next week came directly from a student! We both were so energized and excited about it we wished it wasn’t the weekend, let alone a three day weekend.
Our field trip to the Western Museum of Flight was a great success! We “rode” in the fighter plane, saw a replica of the moon lander, learned about flight suits, studied in the library, examined an actual blast from a fighter’s ammunition and launched planes of our own. We even got to eat our snack under a plane on the tarmac!
Next week our kittens (beginning Tuesday) will be building their own amusement park. We will collaborate, plan by making lists and blueprints, compiling supplies, and building and testing our rides along the way. I’m imagining what fun the kittens will have! From the rides to the concession stands and kitty money being exchanged for tickets and food, the possibilities are endless.
Because Monday is a holiday, we will begin in the classroom on Tuesday.
p.s. Check out even more photos on Flickr!