Thursday, September 13, 2018

Second Week of September ECE

We continued with all of the songs, verses & movement from our first week of school, with the addition of a song for when we line up at the back door to go out and come back in from outdoor play. I'm using "All in a Row" from The Singing Day, track 11.

We continued to work on some basic skills which we will be using throughout the school year, such as puppetry, watercolor painting, baking, and cooking. Beginning next week I will probably spend three days working with a story instead of only two. The children missed "The Enormous Turnip" when we transitioned to a new story on Tuesday. I could tell from their comments that they would have loved to do it at least one more time! I put the wooden figures, stable, playsilk, and giant needle felted turnip under the playstands so that they can act it out together during their morning indoor play time.


Today I passed out the wooden figures (man, woman, daughter, dog, cat, mouse) and laid the silk, stable, and turnip in the middle of the circle. Every child was one of the characters and brought his/her figure into the story to help act it out when needed. They enjoyed this tremendously. Our follow-up activity today was Baking! We made Fluffy Sweet-Potato Biscuits. Several of the older children came into the kitchen and helped with this activity as well.


After we read this story, which they were enthralled by, it was time for snack. During snack I showed them some dried peas which Leah had been doing experiments on. Two dried peas were placed in dry paper towel in a Ziploc bag. We passed them around and saw how they were still "sleeping." The other two dried peas were placed in a wet paper towel in a Ziploc bag. Those peas were different. Because of the water they "woke up" and were growing into plants! We saw the roots coming out at one end and the shoots coming out at the other, with long stems complete with tiny leaves.

We also noticed that the stems were all twisted and I told the children that those baby plants had been searching for the sun. All plants love sunshine -- and even every vegetable we will be putting in our Stone Soup on Thursday and even the Enormous Turnip in our story on Monday -- and they love to stretch and stretch and stretch to the sunshine. I read them a beautiful poem about the Sun and showed them the illustration in our poetry book. Then when snack was done we went outside into the sunshine and sat and did our own Yellow watercolor paintings of the sun's warmth and light. Lastly we planted our two baby pea plants into our pots by the finger knitted tipi.

    The Sun
    The sun is a glowing spider
    that crawls out
    from under the earth
    to make her way across the sky
    warming and weaving
    with her bright old fingers
    of light.

    Grace Nichols

You may already know that Waldorf children in the Grades work with two versions of yellow (a warm and a cool). However, Stockmar also makes primary colors, including a Yellow, for the Early Childhood environment. These particular paints are called Circle Color Watercolor Paint. We talked about how to care for the special watercolor brush by gently stroking the bristles in one direction so they don't get tangled up, and how to rinse it nice and clean at the end and lay it carefully on the painting board.


At the very start of our morning all of the children in our class helped act out the story of Stone Soup.

They each chose a veggie or pasta shape from our basket of play kitchen foods and stood in a circle with the foods hidden behind their backs. I pretended to be the weary traveler who went around the circle asking person after person if they had anything to share. They each refused and Becca, the last person, told me all she could spare was water. And she handed me an empty pot of "water." Of course I was overjoyed and took my special stone out of my pocket and sat in the middle of the circle of townspeople, happily stirring my pot with a stone in it. One by one they came forward to add their ingredients and then rushed back to the play kitchen foods to get even more to share. At the end we pretended to sit together and have a grand feast.

Of course it was so much fun to actually make Stone Soup today! Our ingredients were carrots, celery, potatoes, tomatoes, and zucchini. Each child washed his or her vegetable. I diced an onion and sauteed it in some olive oil, then added chicken bone broth (and the stone of course). I cut up each veggie and invited the children to come help add their contribution to the soup. When it was time all of the class came together to sing grace with us. The soup was delicious and many children had seconds. Of course there was enough for everyone!

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