Thursday, November 8, 2018

November - "Autumn" Movement Journey

We continued with our Songs, Verses & Movement for classroom routines.

I wrote a detailed post about how to incorporate the eurythmy gestures for this week's "Autumn" movement journey into the storytelling. There is also a link in that post to the FREE PDF version of this book! You can download it from the Online Waldorf Library. Because there were so many new movements to learn, I kept the verses portion of Circle Time quite short.

Circle Time

Monday, November 5

A lovely leafy day! Children brought in leaves they had collected from home and we looked at all of them and made crayon rubbings (this is easily done with a smooth surface such as a tabletop, sturdy leaves with good veination, clear contact paper, plain white paper, and block beeswax crayons). We read Leaf Man and made our own people from our leaves. We also enjoyed our movement adventure, with a bear, a turtle, and a porcupine coming to visit the cave and get tucked into their beds of cozy warm leaves. I sang "Round and Round" as the song the dwarves sing to the animals when they fall asleep at the end. This song is on the Seven Times the Sun CD (track 36).

Tuesday, November 6

A parent brought in The Leaves on the Trees to share and so I sang it to the class. We had on hand a lot of the leaves mentioned in the book including gingko, tulip poplar, maple, and sassafras. I actually had to send Becca outside to get another sassafras leaf because I had brought in the mitten one but the book talks about the dinosaur track one. Since I was a little girl I've always loved the beautiful variety of leaves on the sassafras tree!

Our options for morning play time included making more leaf rubbings with our newest leaves as well as making Shaving Cream Marbled Leaves and/or helping me punch out even more maple leaves from white cardstock for the Shaving Cream art project (yes I made my life easier by buying a punch). We ended up marblezing 20 beautiful leaves, enough for each child to take home five. They can go on your family's Nature Table or just be for play. Zac sent his to his sister Leah as a gift for her 15th birthday. We used extra wide craft sticks for both the stirring and the scraping. I had the shaving cream in sturdy plastic bins so you could scrape your stick clean on the side of the bin as needed. This craft requires a ton of newspaper and baby wipes and shaving cream and food coloring (and patience) but the results are stunning! And I promised the children we would also have some plain (no dye added) shaving cream available for sensory play on Thursday!

In our "Autumn" movement journey, the children suggested animals to visit the cave. We ended up with a bear, an elephant (who moves his trunk up and down as he snores), a cheetah (who snores with a grrrrr), and a porcupine. They told me how each animal should move and how it should snore (with expansion and contraction), and absolutely loved hammering out the stone walls of the cave to make it big enough to fit the elephant!

During snack I read them chapter 46 from The Lost Lagoon, which is the most beautiful description of the life cycle of a leaf I've ever heard. It also happens to be about a maple leaf, which was a great fit with our art project. I also set up the science experiment and we checked after a while to see if bubbles were forming on the leaf surface (they were). It was very cool and worth doing at home if you can still find some green leaves in your yard!

In outside play time the focus was still on raking leaves to form a huge gigantic pile for jumping in. I saw lots of problem solving and communication, with rakes in use but also a child-size snow shovel and child-size wheelbarrow, as well as the red wagon. They collaborated beautifully and the number one thing I heard outside was, "Do you need some help?" The For Small Hands catalogue is a wonderful source of well-made child-size tools. They even have separately sized leaf rakes for ages 3-5 and ages 6-9.

Thursday, November 8

Today the children used tiny leaf punches to punch colorful leaves out of strips of cardstock which we marbelized on Tuesday with the shaving cream. We also had bins of plain shaving cream available for sensory play! In our movement journey we had a bear, a cheetah, a dragon, and a giraffe visit the cave. It was fun to breathe dragon fire when we were snoring, and to stretch our necks up high as the dwarf greeted the giraffe and then bend our giraffe necks down when we went down into the cave to curl up and sleep.

We read Winter, Awake! during snack time. It is so exciting to wonder when the first snowflakes will fall...

And, of course, today was Stone Soup day. Here was our list of group contributions to the Stone Soup this week:

sweet potato
baby spinach
white potato

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