Music, Planting Seeds, and the Great (Melting) Outdoors...
Spring is so close we can feel it in the air! We had a bit of a sleepy morning because of changing the clocks this past Saturday, so we kept things simple and did our regular calendar, weather, and circle time routines, then following up with some music to help us get more energized. We enjoyed singing along and dancing to several of our favorites including our March Wind song, the A-B-C's, Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, Big Rock Candy Mountain, Skip to My Lou, and Yankee Doodle. We love creating dances to go with the most familiar tunes- we have specific movements for each verse of Skip to My Lou,"for instance. I'm so happy I can bring live, interactive music to the children... and equally glad they never criticize my mistakes!
After a few minutes of free play, I spent one-on-one time withe each child planting seeds. Together the children and I looked at the flower or vegetable we'd be planting together, then we talked about how deep we'd need to place the seeds. We guessed at what the seeds would look like- big, small, brown, black, and so on, and then we went ahead and planted the seeds in their appropriate spots in some peat seed starting flats.
Among the varieties we planted were big gourd seeds, tiny columbine seeds...
...Flat zucchini seeds, and wrinkly nasturtium seeds.
It will be magical once all these flowers and vegetables pop their first shoots out of the soil and even more magical as the children watch their efforts grow and bloom in the most literal sense.
Once the seeds were planted, the children had a chance to use a spray bottle to mist the seeds with water. They needed lots of help squeezing, but spraying anything with water is certainly fun!
When the flats were all set, we geared up to go outside. Today was really the first transitional day between winter and spring, and it was amazing how many differences the children noticed as we walked around the neighborhood! The first thing we saw were irresistable puddles of runoff water. We talked about where the water came from, and all the state of matter experiments we did in January clearly paid off because both of the big kids figured out the water was from melting snow.
We found puddle after puddle, and they were all equally fun to run and jump through!
Our neighborhood walk was a great, safe way to practice walking together as the littles took turns either walking by my side or riding in the stroller. The littles noticed patches of grass beginning to appear at the edges of snowbanks, so we all took a few moments to examine the dead grass and wet mud. We marveled at the prints our wet feet left on the pavement. It was interesting to see our tracks in something other than snow! The wild animals must have been busy preparing for spring because we didn't see anything other than a little sparrow or two for the whole hour we were out.
We returned with ravenous appetites and settled down for naps gladly. Losing that hour of sleep can really mess with one's bodily rhythms!
In the afternoon, we read That's What Leprechauns Do by Eve Bunting and Emily Arnold McCully. It's a funny book about leprechauns who just can't resist a little mischief. We talked a little about leprechauns and where they live and how you're supposed to be able to find them. The children seem intrigued.
See you tomorrow!