Welcome to Paula's Preschool and Kindergarten! My class blog is the place I share information about some of the fun learning activities we are doing at school. I hope to provide parents with insight into what we are doing, and why, and to share ideas with other early childhood educators. Please don't use the photos or text of this blog without permission, but please do use any ideas you find useful. Thank you for stopping by!

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Spring time in the garden

It really is spring time here.  Back in the fall, we put out our old jack-o-lantern pumpkins in the veggie garden, and observed them as they rotted over the winter.  The kiddos were very interested in seeing the whole process, and enjoyed poking sticks at the not-so-attractive remains.  This week we found baby pumpkins growing!  We're watching as the seed leaves give way to true leaves, and seeing how quickly they grow!
 The cabbages in the garden have gone to flower, and are full of activity too.  We've been watching ladybugs, butterflies, and bees come to the flowers for nectar and pollen.
 Look at the pollen sacks on this bee!  She has gathered a huge load of pollen to take back to her hive.
 The kiddos are enjoying playing outside too.  Here they are, "in the hot tub, playing their DSs."  They crack me up!
 This area of the garden has been named "Roly poly city", due to the number of critters hiding out underneath the leaves.  A couple of the children hardly leave this area, they are so fascinated with what they can find here. 
 Some of the growing things are good for us to eat.  We tasted fresh asparagus this week - yum!
 The children are watching the strawberry plants eagerly, observing the flowers as they change into tiny green strawberries, and waiting, just waiting, for them to ripen!
 This is another yummy plant, just starting out.  Malabar spinach is both ornamental and edible.  I overwintered one inside, and we planted some of its seeds a few weeks ago. 
 We've also had plenty of seed play outside in the sunshine lately.  I have several different materials for the children to use: feed corn and sunflower seeds, bird seeds, and some other grains.  I don't want to use food to play in most of the time, as food is a valuable resource, and while we are blessed with plenty, not all the world is.  The animal feed however doesn't get wasted - what the children drop, our squirrels, birds and even the ducks come to eat. 
 I think some of our ecological messages are getting through to the children too.  This kiddo told me the green crane is helping recycle the seeds, moving them into the truck to take to recycle.  
Another part of spring that the children look forward to is Easter, and our egg hunt.  We have been busy this week with stuffing small toys and candy into Easter eggs, prepping them for the real egg hunt we'll have in a couple of weeks.  The children LOVE helping to put the treasures in the eggs, and I am most happy to have their help.
 While we wait for the real egg hunt, we've been practicing in the back yard with empty eggs and baskets.  The children both hide them and seek - it's all good!


 I love the peaceful feeling of spring in the back yard!

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