Notes from the Naturalist Week 28
We can mark another beautiful day down in the books at Nature Preschool. The sun was shining, the weather warm and the children were full of energy. After the gray days of last week, we definitely earned today. With our morning play and circle time out of the way, we took to the woods. Up the Stephen’s Trail we went, in search of nothing and found so much to explore. The children have grown in so many ways since the beginning of school and today was a testament to the hard work of each child’s maturity and development. Would you believe it if we told you not one child complained on the steep hike up the mountain? Truth!
Springtime is filled with so much activity. Midway up the trail we spotted scat on the trail. The questions went around about who is belonged to, how old it was and did it have hair in it? We found trees with buds on them. Again, the questions went around about what type of tree and when would the leaves pop out. Further up the trail a moth flew by – some called It a butterfly! And to round it out the birds were singing along with an icy trail to navigate. So many parts to the whole picture.
In this season of Nature Preschool, it has become noticeable that each child has really reached a level of comfort in their outdoor play. One child gathered two sticks and talked about making a fire which eventually led to making a fairy house. As friends came around, they made furniture out of pinecones and small pieces of wood. Another child was seen dragging around a hefty size white pine branch while “building” a fort. Some children were busy playing “house” were they took naps on a rock made dinner in their outdoor kitchen. This level of creativity in play really shows how comfortable the children are within their environment and with their peer group.
Every moment we explore the Slim Baker area we are filled with gratitude for the ability to teach in such a special area. We encourage all of our families to explore the many different trails this unique area. Some trails lead to an open field perfect for running and games. Some trails lead deep into the woods. You can go straight up to top or you can meander through the woods, up ledge and pop out on the backside. There are brooks, and rock nooks, there are hardwoods and softwoods and there is space……space to enjoy, relax and connect. Take the time to explore with your children, connect to a special place and see where it leads you. This adventure of ours at Nature Preschool, is pretty darn sweet!
For information on scat: www. uconnladybug.wordpress.com/2015/01/23/scat-in-your-garden/ For more information on birds in New England: www.nenature.com/Birds.htm
For more information on creative and pretend play: www.psychologytoday.com/blog/beautiful-minds/201203/the-need-pretend-play-in-child-development