Friday, 15 August 2014

Tadpoles in the Classroom

In the spring, we put a little request in our school newsletter.  If anyone comes across tadpoles, could they please bring some in to the school.  Two of our families found some!

Thank you to D. for bringing in tadpoles for the upstairs class.

Thank you to sisters R. and E. for bringing in tadpoles for the downstairs class.

R. wrote a story about the tadpoles she brought to school. (You can click on the images to make them larger.)

The tadpoles were a huge source of conversation and many stories were written about them.

A story written with the Story Alphabet

The Finished Story

Do you know why the children were so fascinated by the tadpoles?  S.'s story offers an explanation.

When one of the tadpoles die, another one eats it.

Yes, we did see many tadpoles eating one another.  Truly fascinating. Unfortunately, the school year ended before we were able to see the tadpoles change into froglets.  The very long winter delayed their life cycle.  We released the tadpoles into nearby ponds.  We truly enjoyed having the tadpoles in our classrooms. 

Saturday, 9 August 2014

Out of This World ~ Our Study of the Solar System

During the Spring term, we spent a number of weeks learning about our Solar System and outer space.  Children and teachers were both fascinated by this subject and we all learned quite a lot.

Our study began during Circle Time with the story of The Big Bang.  Every few days we would read a book about a different planet.  We have individual planets in the classrooms and the older children made their own planet books.  The children were so distressed that Pluto is now classified as a dwarf planet.  We sing a song about the planets and had to add a verse that says "We feel so sorry for little Pluto."  Pluto captured everyone's imagination.

The children were so passionate about their favourite planets that we created a wall graph.  It answered the question "Which Planet Is Your Favourite?"

Which Planet Is Your Favourite?

Each child wrote their name on a piece of paper and placed it beneath their favourite planet.

When everyone had placed their name under a planet, we discussed the results.  Which planet do we like the most? Which planet do we like the least?  How many people like (name a certain planet)?  The children found the results fascinating and the graph was a source of discussion for many days.

Examining The Results

For craft, each child made their own planet.

The highlight of our space study was the contents of this bag. Can you guess what's in the bag?

Real astronaut food, freeze dried ice cream, was in the bag!

The NASA calendar was given to us by N.'s family.  When N.'s older sisters were at our school, they brought back calendars for the school when they visited the Kennedy Space Center. N. was just a baby at that time.

N. With A NASA Calendar

This is what the ice cream looked like.

Astronaut Ice Cream

We all tried some of each.  You have to use the saliva in your mouth to moisten the ice cream.

On another day, we had real Earth ice cream sprinkled with freeze dried ice cream dots.

Freeze Dried Ice Cream Dots

It was yummy!

Learning about the Solar System was out of this world!