Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Inquiry: Dragonflies' Fire Safety Video

Check out the Dragonflies awesome Fire Safety Video... the culminating project for the First Responders Study:

Blocks: The Crickets visit the Imagination Playground at Brevoort!

 "Watch how fast the balls can roll down!"

 "We have to get more!"

"If we put them close, it might work!"

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Choice Time: Dragonflies Make Earth Day Collages

The PreK Dragonflies are talking a lot about Earth Day these days. The children came up with the idea to make an "earth collage" during choice time this week. They made a trip down to our Materials Room and collected what looked interesting to them. They then glued the recycled materials on a large piece of cardboard and made a beautiful collage together!! 

Science: Ladybugs Learn about Insects & Honey!

The 2 year old Ladybugs have been engaged in their "Life and Growing" unit and this week they're learning all about insects. They learned all about honey; from bees, nectar and flowers to picking it up from the grocery store. They learned that a beekeeper wears a special hat so he doesn't get stung and despite popular belief...he does not wear a space helmet! 

After learning about the honey process, The Ladybugs embarked on an adventurous blind taste test. One cup contained applesauce and one cup contained honey. The Ladybugs had to guess which one was honey and then use adjectives to describe the taste. Some responses were "sweet," "not salty," "sticky," and "not applesauce."

 The testing materials

 Learning about the different parts of the honey making process

Covering her eyes while going for a taste...

Anxiously awaiting their turn

Monday, April 15, 2013

Classroom Community: Roly Poly of the Week!

The 2-3 year old Roly Polies have been doing "Roly Poly of the Week." This special activity is so exciting for these guys but it also creates a bridge from home to school and encourages individual ownership over their classroom. Here's how it works:

- Classroom work, pictures and anything else they would like gets put up on their bulletin board. They can also bring in family pictures, favorite books, music, instruments, food and toys to share with the class. Parents can come in to show pictures or do a read aloud.
- During Circle Time, they are interviewed in depth (think The Actor’s Studio) and they even get to help run Circle Time! The kids get to pick the songs sung and books read.
- Finally, after the week ends their bulletin board gets condensed to a page and added to the Roly Poly Class book. The story gets more and more interesting with each page...

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Art: The Crickets' Self Portraits

Science/Art: Caterpillars Spring Observational Artwork

The 3 year-old Caterpillars are studying plants, just in time for spring! They have been doing "life-cycle of a seed" movement activities, planting seeds in the classroom and reading tons of books about where our food comes from and how plants/gardens grow.

For this project they were honing their observation skills, doing careful drawings with colored pencils. First, they talked about the flower they chose, which provided an opportunity to look at some different plant parts (flower petals, pollen, leaves, stems), and they also noticed shapes and subtle colors in the flowers (pointy leaves, long ones, round ones, many vs few). Next, they tried to identify shapes to draw and added green leaves. Finally, they picked watercolors that matched the flower and added that! 

Monday, April 1, 2013

Blocks: Our Visit from Imagination Playground

Gina, from Imagination Playground, came to The Co-op School today to talk to us about our amazing new blocks. She told us that an architect named David Rockwell discovered that his children liked playing with the large boxes their toys came in more than the actual toys and so he came up with the idea of creating large child-sized blocks. 

The kids had questions about how the blocks are made. We also talked about what we can make with the blocks (some ideas: playhouses, furniture, robots...), how it's good sometimes to make a plan before building and how to be safe when using the blocks.

 We discovered that we can stack up to 6 squares to make a slide.

  Two of our Co-opers worked together to make a /2 Sonic 1/2 robot-inspired sculpture.

 A house with a rainbow was built by 2 more of our creative kiddos!

Gina is a professional opera singer too and we ended with a lovely "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" sung out of a man-made "microphone."