We had such a wonderful day together on Friday! The children seem to be feeling comfortable and safe in our rhythm and space- and with one another. As soon as I started to sing "Deep Inside My Heart", they gathered around for our morning circle with faces full of anticipation. Our apple poem is a hit- here are the words if you'd like to see them perform it at home:
"Wayyy up high in the apple tree,
Two little apples, smiling down at me
I shook that tree just as hard as I could
And down came the apples and Mmmmm
They were good"
Morning circle is also our time to look around and say hello to one another, to ask questions and share stories. Indi shared his bird skull that we ended up thinking could be a fish after a closer look..and he shared a special rock, too! Please send along any special items from home that you think your child may like to share with the group.
We examined our pumpkins, gourds and butternut squash again and during snack we opened the butternut squash and took a look inside, each of us sharing something we liked about it; seeds, the orange color, the smoothness and the fact that the flesh was wet.
After snack, we took a long walk and visited each of the 4 corners of the property, taking note of what each area has to offer; farm animals, a fire pit/gathering space, a pond, and the root cellar/slide/hill area. We spent a long while running and rolling down the hill, cheering one another on .
The fire pit is a fun place to play in the sand and we gathered firewood and transferred it from the stack to the fire and talked about gathering there at the end of the season perhaps, with all of you!
When we got to the pond, the children sat and waited patiently, practicing calm bodies and gentle voices so that the ducks wouldn't be too shy to come up for a swim. It is hilarious to see the ducks frolicking and cleaning their feathers in the water and while we watched them, some interesting questions came about, like "Why don't the ducks fly away?" and "Why are they shy? leading us to a lengthy conversation about animals and their temperaments and the difference between wild animals and farm animals.
Next, we visited the garden and carefully used clippers to cut flowers. We went over how to safely hold and use the clippers, and took turns giving it a try. We took our flowers back to the picnic table and made flower arrangements in little jars for the children to take home.
We had lunch and rest time inside since we had spent the morning in the blustery wind! During lunchtime we continued reading about the animals on Maple Hill farm book, going back over to the chickens and geese to recap before reading about the goats..Ah, yes, the goats! We also visited the new goat house on our walk and explored it inside and out in anticipation of the arrival of 3 little pygmy goats that the children will meet this coming Friday.
We are keeping an eye on the herbs we planted as well as on the caterpillars we found last week and hope to watch during their transition into butterflies.
At rest time we read a magical story called, "Deep In the Woods" about woodland animals working together to make a home for themselves to share.
We enjoyed roasted butternut squash at our closing circle with music, wrapping up such a full and fulfilling day!
Friday was a gorgeous day and Haile's big sister, Wren Zazie joined us for the day, making it even more filled with sunshine. She drew an amazing portrait of herself in Haile's journal, I will ask her if I can share it with you next
week : )
Esme and Indi we missed you and we can't wait to have you back with us!
During our morning circle we continued to identify and examine our fall veggies: Pumpkin, butternut squash, gourd and this week we added a potato, a sweet potato and beans. We considered their shape & weight, whether they were smooth, rough, bumpy, heavy etc.. We played a game where we put our hands behind our backs and tried to guess which veggie was placed in our hand and honestly, I didn't know how this would go but it was so fun and everyone got it, (adorably so!) and even closed their eyes to be more focused. We continued our practice of looking at one another to say "hello" and perhaps ask a question to a friend or make an observation like, I notice you are wearing run shoes!"
During snack we read "All Year Long" by Nancy Tafuri and we sang the months of the year song while looking at each picture, focusing in particular on the Fall months and the transition to Winter.
We shelled our beans and put them in a pot and added chicken stock. They boiled away on the stove inside all morning. We made beautiful leaf rubbings with wax crayons, rebuilt the fairy house (with the twisty branches), played with trucks and filled up the pond with water for the ducks.
The goats joined us to pick and munch on Autumn Olives and then we brought some to the chickens for a treat. The ducks took a nice swim and then gave us a giggle when they waddled home.
Before our rest, we read "The Tiger Who Came to Tea" by Judith Kerr about a tiger who, rather casually, comes for tea and a mother and her daughter host him graciously despite his eating everything in the house. We enjoyed our beans with tamari during our closing circle with the sun shining down- much needed nourishment for us all. You may hear a Halloween song or two in the next couple of weeks!
See you on Friday,
About Woods School Aquinnah
Woods School Aquinnah is a new Preschool/Kindergarten program- acting as a bridge between the Skiff's Lane and Allen Farm programs. This past year, Laura hosted school on Fridays on her homestead in Aquinnah, in anticipation of the full time Prek/K beginning in the Fall of 2023. You can find a collection of her weekly email updates in the blog.