Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Picnic & Play: An Egg is Quiet

Today we started and ended the morning with free indoor play, enjoying first the Cuboro Standard Marble Maze and then a few games (Hoot Owl Hoot by Peaceable Kingdom and Socken Zocken by Haba).

We had a friend over today who hadn't yet done our series of new animal yoga poses from Fly Like a Butterfly: Yoga for Children, so we did that. It was great fun but Zac got a little wound up so we also talked about resting in Child's Pose anytime you begin to feel overwhelmed in a yoga class.

  • Buzzing Bee, page 42
  • Cricket Rub, page 95
  • Spider Stretch, page 39
  • Butterfly, page 11
  • Butterfly/Chrysalis, page 43

After yoga we read An Egg is Quiet by Dianna Hutts Aston.

We followed this great Nature book with a lesson on wet felting eggs.

Zac has seen this lesson many times but not gotten to do wet felting before, and so he was very excited. His friend was having a great time too and, since I go over the entire process from raw fleece through carding and spinning, he also really enjoyed spinning roving to make yarn. It is great fun to try pulling wool roving, and seeing how easily it comes apart, and then to spin a narrow piece of the roving into yarn and then try pulling it again and seeing how strong it is! I always show children a ball of yarn from the store and see if they can spot the twist in it. They are so excited when they see it!

I have so many books about handwork but Pelle's New Suit by Elsa Beskow is a really useful book if you want to introduce the steps which wool goes through from sheep to finished garment. Plus, this story is also available as a full movement circle in volume 1 of Movement Journeys and Circle Adventures: Movement Enrichment with a Therapeutic Approach for Early Childhood by Nancy Blanning and Laurie Clark.

I have a whole lesson about wool which includes a raw fleece in a bag with the sheep's name on it, a sack of wool which has been washed but still has some lanolin in it, a large basket of dyed carded roving, etc. We grated our olive oil soap with a cheese grater and added it to an enamel washbasin along with some hot water and I showed the boys how to wrap the wool carefully around the raw egg, felt it thoroughly, and then make a little zigzag cut with sharp scissors to remove the egg.

I learned this Handwork project long ago in Colorado at a Waldorf homeschooling conference and it's my favorite first wet felting project with kids. Using the real raw egg helps slow them down and they are more careful in the process. I've never had an egg break during the felting!

I love sharing books from my Lending Library with homeschool families! Zac's friend left with some extra wool roving for spinning, his wet felted egg, and a piece of artwork from a previous session of Picnic & Play. I also lent his mom A Nest is Noisy for them to read together plus Games Children Play: How Games and Sport Help Children Develop. Kim John Payne's really useful book of games and movement for all ages also contains a great article about the four temperaments. If you're interested in reading more on this subject, here's a previous blog post about the Four Temperaments.

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