Sunday, April 30, 2017

Ready, Set, Grow!

March and April have been busy and fun in PreK.  Our focus has been on life cycles and and how things grow.  We also conducted a few experiments and have been watching and waiting for changes in our seeds, our caterpillar, and our flowers.  

Our first experiment was on transpiration; how water evaporates from the leaves, buds, and petals pulling water up the stem of the plant.   We used white carnations and several jars filled with liquid water color.  We loved making predictions about the end result and the amount if time needed to produce a result.  

The start of spring also meant that our garden box was ready to be planted.  The class came up with a list of items they wished to plant and I was happy to provide everything on the list.  You must take a peak the next time you're in the courtyard!  There are petunias, strawberries, a tomato plant, a milkweed plant, lemon seeds, apple seeds, and more.  

We were lucky to receive a milkweed plant and a monarch caterpillar to observe.  Unfortunately, our caterpillar's life ended before it could pupate but even so, we learned a lesson about what might happen when creatures are taken from their natural environment.  

Inspired by our caterpillars and the potential for a butterfly, we created amazing and unique fold over paintings.  Often the paint presses together and students will say the creation looks like a butterfly.  The more paintings the students made, the more interesting and creative things they saw in the paint.  Some overheard comments from students:
"It looks like two gorillas fighting at once!"
"It's like a bee."  
"It looks like a frog."
"There's a heart in the middle."
"That's too cool!"
"It's really blowing my mind!"

Let's jump outside for a minute to see PreK climbing, pouring water, and playing cooperatively in shared spaces.  

Back inside the classroom we used the book, "Elmer" by David McKee, for literacy development activities.  We colored our own elephants, we wrote the word 'elephant,' and students practiced retelling a story using the book.  

Let's end with a look at the amazing and inventive way PreK has been constructing with our set of wood ramps and balls.  

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