Last week we read about pets. The children took turns to tell us if they had any pets at home, what kind, and what are the names of their pets. We have a Book on the Shelf work about a little girl who would like a pet and discoveres that a bug is the perfect pet for her.
This past week we began to talk about different kinds of gardens and read about a vegetable garden. The children also enjoyed doing a clothes washing actvity outside this week. My very first job at a Montessori School was in 1984 and I was in charge of what is called the "outdoor environment". The chidlren can choose to go outside on a patio and work with various outdoor activities such as hammering, washing dishes or clothes, easel painting, tire scrubbing, etc. The children really enjoy being outside working. So I thought we could give it a try during playtime.
Recently we have been reading about the Solar System. The children can choose matching cards, a planet layout, and a planet poem as some work choices. It is so enjoyable to hear the children talk of what we read in a story or discussed at circle time. One of the younger children, whom I thought wasn't paying too much attention during one of the stories, asked to do the "Solar Sisters" work a little later that morning. So precious!
This week we read about volcanoes. The children liked our little science experiment of making a mini erupting volcano as a group activity. The children could choose to paint a volcano at the Art Table.
We talked about different ways we can help to care for the Earth. We read about some of the different activities people do on Earth Day, and what we can continue doing each day. We made necklaces and had a few different other activities that the children could choose from. We also thought about the worms we recently read about, and had review on how important they are to the soil of the Earth.
This past week we read about worms and snails. The children really enjoy the worms and I am always curious as to which children will and will not touch them. I have yet to come across snails to make a 'snail garden'. Every year I order caterpillars for us watch grow and change into butterflies, but this year it just didn't happen. It has recently been a very challenging few months and ordering them unfortunately did not happen. Praying mantis' are another great insect to watch hatch. However, the worms were a hit with the children!
We talked about what the birds are busy doing in the Spring and that many people like to go bird watching. The children could choose to paint a pair of binoculars at the Art Table. Some also colored a little bird guide book to use as they look for birds with their binoculars.
We had a review on seeds. We looked at the parts of a seed and also planted a few different kinds as a group to see which one will germinate first.
We read about the continent of Australia this month. We also looked at different kinds of animals that are unique to Australia.
We read about rock collecting and different kinds of rocks this month. The children can choose to create with and explore rocks. We had a 'Rock Dig' work choice. The chidlren worked hard to dig out 9 different kinds of gems and rocks from a clay block. It was really fun for them. I found it through Scholastic Book Club. I thought it would be a quick thing, but it took a few days of taking turns to get them all out.