March 18, 2016

This week at the playground, children have been coming up to teachers to say that they don't like some of the games that children are playing. Today when we got to the playground, we had an all class meeting about what we should be doing about "shooting" in our games. Children had the opportunity to share their ideas and opinions about whether children should be allowed to be able to shoot at their friends in specific games at the playground. After children heard each other's ideas, we noticed that most children were suggesting that they don't feel "safe" and that they wanted to stop these kinds of games. When we asked children if they agreed with this statement, all 18 children who were in the Purple Room today raised their hands. Discussions like this one give the children agency and ownership over decision-making and rules in the classroom, helping them to better understand where rules come from and why it's important to follow them.

This week we've had some really exciting science small group meetings about nests.  Kids have a lot of thoughts and feelings about nests and the symbolism of nests.  Groups quickly agreed that birds make nests for safety and to keep eggs/babies warm and comfy.  Students also noticed that there is quite a bit of human-made material in some of the examples of nests we've seen in pictures and in real life. This has inspired great range and opportunity for creativity in the nests we are making. Some children choose to stick with more natural materials that we find in the garden, and some are more attracted to materials we have at school such as yarn, fabric, pom-poms. All of the nests are pretty stunning to look at. 

Here are some observations:

"If I were a bird I would use bark." 

"Yeah, because it's bendable!"

"I'm gonna add some cozy materials."

"Maybe birds could hide their eggs in their nests so maybe predators can't find them."

Many children have expressed a desire to put their nests outside somewhere to see if maybe real birds might like to use them this spring. The nests will be coming home as they are made so feel free to put them somewhere appropriate outside and observe what happens!