Notes from the Naturalist Week 1
What a fantastic day! We were greeted at the lodge with a light mist falling from the sky. How fitting for a nature preschool – poised for a school year of muddy boots, great friends and content hearts to be welcomed by Mother Nature. We will not complain! At the very foundation of the Nature Preschool at Heart Centered Multi-Age, our work is in training our friends to be comfortable outside in any weather.
Our days over the next six weeks will be filled with honing our “routine” skills but we will still find time to connect with the natural world around us. And today we looked at the difference between two types of trees (the leaves really!). We found the leaves of a Red Oak (Quercus rubra) and a White Oak (Quercus alba). The red oak leaf has jagged edges. The lobes of the leaf are well defined with sharp angles. In comparison, the white oak leaf has rounded edges and almost looks like fingers on a hand. White Oak can be harder to find, so if you want to check it out, head up to the field above the Lodge.
As for some of the “routine” work we will be fine tuning in the coming weeks, our work will include how we handle our bodies in our classroom space and outside with our friends. Caterpillar feet are for walking slowly and confidently. Eagle Eyes are for looking at the teacher or for paying close attention to given directions. Owl ears are for listening to what our teachers and friends have to say. Lips as quiet as a mouse, will always insure that we are not too loud to scare our friends or the wildlife! You will most likely hear your children talk about our schools ways and we hope that this helps grow your children into capable and confident learners.
Our theme over the next month will be humility. Today we talked about what makes a good friend, how to be helpful to a friend in need and how to solve our social problems – may they be small – they always feel big! Each child choose a stone to add to our daily classroom Mandala and each contributed ways to be a good friend. Our hearts were full of great promise at the end of our day today! Thank you for sharing your children with us!