Finding this bone in the woods has led to much wonder and curiosity. Whose bone is it? Why was it in our woods? This week, we wanted to know why we even have bones.
HuM: Because when you don’t stand up, you don’t have any more bones.
SR: They’re a part of your body.
BW: Because we don’t wanna fall down.
KH: They help us not die and keep us standing.
IP: Help us not be broken.
EH: If we don’t have bones, it’s going to be tough to move.
MB: We’re humans. We need bones to be alive and maybe we’ll be a little bit alive.
MH: Bones are just a decoration.
GK: If we don’t have bones, we would not live anymore. They help us cook our dinner and help us get our lunchbox.
XZ: They help us be strong.
HeM: Not breaking.
MS: Make us feel hard.
AZ: They make us strong.
AH: To be strong and healthy. To grow!
We’ll have to take a closer look to find out more!
One of the children asked us many times if we might try cooking the corn. We asked them how we should cook it. After a bit of thinking, they decided that their mom makes corn in the oven. We weren’t sure where this experiment might lead, but we thought it was certainly an interesting prospect.
The temperature and baking time were suggested by the experimenting student.
These cooked quietly in the science lab while we finished our choice time in the classroom. The children helped us set a timer so we wouldn’t forget to pull them out of the oven. Two students watched the timer carefully for the last 9 minutes.
When Miss. Davis brought them in, the pan was still hot. We noticed they didn’t look too different. We did, however, decide that we should keep them separate from the other corn so we could compare them. One child suggested making a label and another wrote it out for us.
Once we looked a bit closer, we could see some differences between the cooked and uncooked corn. What do you notice?
One of our centers had a makeover recently. Due to the sharing of nature collections from both at school and at home, the children have created what they call “The Science Lab.” We have ample acorns, plentiful pinecones, noodle-like nests, and one slightly dead, but way cool, cicada. The children have created their own experiments involving buoyancy, auditory tones, and habitats. Collections are also a great way to practice our math skills.
A little while ago, we realized we had a visitor in our class. This little friend was attempting to pick out a lovey (we think?) Being kind hosts, we created a special place in our classroom for our visitor to hang out safely.
We learned that our new friend needed special food. Hamburgers were just not going to cut it. We also found out that it required hiding spots to feel safe and a small capful of water to drink.
Many names were considered including Buggie, Boogie and Spiderman. After a class vote, “Ellie” became the official name of our new friend. (Although many still call her “Buggie.” I’m including a picture at the bottom of this post, but I should warn you, if you are not a fan of spiders…..close this window now.
Ellie inspired us to find out what type of spider she might be. At first, we thought she was a Grass Spider. Then we realized that her abdomen is not the right shape. We’ve also observed that she is not making webs. Our current thought is that she is a wolf spider. If you have a different idea, let us know in the comments. We can always take ideas from “the experts.”
A few times each week, we go foraging for food for her. We’ve put in ants, mites, pill bugs (isopods) and unidentified teeny tiny bugs. Soon, we will need to let her free to roam before the cold weather hits.
An now……meet Ellie:
Our boat accidentally coasted into a swarm of sharks! Oh my! Luckily, there weren’t any injuries. When one child decided to make a fin, others quickly followed.
With sharks came questions.
- What kinds of fish do they eat?
- How strong are shark teeth?
- Is a shark’s fin always long?
- How do sharks swim?
- How do they breathe underwater?
- Why do they swim underwater so long?
- Do they eat fries?
- Why can’t they go on the beach?
The children decided we could look through books, talk to experts, and check the computer to find our answers.
Our studies have taken a new direction. The other day, we noticed that some sharks were swimming around our boat. Luckily, they were nice sharks and didn’t bite anyone. However, it became apparent that the children maintained an interest in all things ocean. One child suggested that we needed to make our room into an ocean using paper hanging from the ceiling.
Beginning our research with some non-fiction seemed like an appropriate idea. Unfortunately, Blobfish appears to have written all over our Deep Sea Book. Oh well, nonetheless, we were able to glean some interesting tidbits about the Hadalpelagic Zone.
***Ask your child about the size of the Giant Spider Crab or the light on the front of an anglerfish. See if they can find anything in your house that is bioluminescent. ****
The barnacles of information that stuck:
“I never knew a squid could grow and I never even knew this animal was in the world.”
“[A submersible]…goes under water.”
“That kind of fish can open it’s mouth really wide. And this octopus glows.”
“I learned that fish light up in the dark”
“I learned that fish can glow.”
A while ago, one of the students posed a curious question about what happens to the water after it rains. We discussed many possibilities, but eventually came to the conclusion that somehow it ended up in the clouds. One of the most creative methods for this molecular travel was via invisible pipes in the trees that carry the water from the ground to the sky.
This week, we read more information about where water goes and how it travels. The water cycle made sense, but it was still a bit confusing. Hmmm…maybe a little music can help?
Enter Tom Chapin’s The Wheel of the Water:
Following the song, we made up our own motions to help us remember the journey of water as it recycle’s across our planet. This song has now become an oft requested favorite.
Yesterday, I asked the children to write about their favorite part of the water cycle.
Luckily, the weather has been cooperative, providing lots of direct observation opportunities. Who knew playing in the rain could garner so much learning?
This week, our class got a little too close the pond than our protective Daddy Goose would have liked and he quickly let us know to find another way around with a perfectly-timed hiss or two. The students handled it well and slowly backed away to give the goose some extra space. Once we were a safe distance away, I explained that the geese have recently laid eggs on the island in the pond and are now very protective of their home and their growing babies. I continued by saying that the geese don’t know that we won’t hurt their babies and sometimes they get upset when we get too close to the pond. Then, one of our youngest students looked at me as said,
“Yeah and the goose probably doesn’t know that this is Winchester Thurston and we ‘think also of the comforts and the rights of others’ so we would never hurt their babies.”
Proof that caring for others and nature go hand in hand!
This morning’s weather proved to be little finicky as it rained on and off for over an hour but that didn’t deter our youngest explorers. We prepared ourselves with boots and raincoats and then embarked on the great outdoors to enjoy the unseasonably warm day. It wasn’t long before a student noticed a small worm making his way up the side of boulder. We theorized about how he was able to hang on to the rock without any arms or legs. We studied how his body would shrink and then stretch as he so effortlessly moved across the rock once he reached the top. Then, before we knew it, there were two worms crawling across the rock. One student proclaimed that there were so many worms out because it was raining and worms love water. The students took turns gently touching the worm and then squealing with joy. It always amazes me what wonderment can be found on what might seem like a dreary day.