Sunday, May 11, 2014

More gardening!

It's springtime and our edible garden is growing! The children have been hard at work planting, weeding, building trellises, and composting with their gardening teacher Shauna. I asked Shauna to write a little bit about the things they have focused on this past two weeks. Here's what she wrote:

Observation Skills: Farmers and Gardeners use their sharp observational skills to watch their plants and land and learn from them.  

To practice this we first played a game called Sharp Eyes.  In this game we try to memorize how someone looks, or how they are standing, and then turn around while they change three subtle things about their appearance (cross their arms, roll up a sleeve, untie a shoe etc.) 

We then turn back around and see if we can spot all three differences.  Next, we transfer this skill to the garden and search for at least three things that have recently changed.  We then share out our changes and try to determine why it changed and predict how things might change for next week.

Another game we played is called Everyone Needs a Rock.  We each found a rock and explored it with four senses (look, feel, smell, and sound) and then imagined we were teeny tiny people living on this rock as our planet.  We found places to put a lookout tower, valleys to collect rainwater, places with dirt to grow food, and finally discussed where we would build a home (thinking about resources and habitats).  We then closed our eyes and tried to identify our own rocks using only the sense of touch.

6 Plant Part Review:  We practiced our 6 Plant Part Song and motions we learned in our first lesson to review Roots, Stem, Leaves, Flowers, Fruits and Seeds.

Seeds/Pea Pods: Last week we focused on seeds.  We looked closer at pea pods today.  We dissected, tasted, compared and contrasted 3 different kinds of peas: Snow, Sugar Snap and English Shelling Peas.  

Worm Bin: We fed our uneaten pea pod shells and briefly discussed how worms decompose food and what worm castings are.

Tendrils: We then directed our attention to the growing peas in the garden.  We talked about tendrils and their purpose and then took some quiet time to draw the garden including the peas.  Finally, there are new (brown) pieces of twine on the pea trellises that we will watch to see if any pea tendrils wrap around by next week.

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