Getting Outdoors

August 25, 2017 § Leave a comment

“There is no description, no image in any book capable of replacing the sight of real trees, and all the life to be found around them in a real forest.” – Dr. Maria Montessori

Back in April and May, Primary students spent Friday afternoons exploring the forest at Counterpane. For Earth Day, we read The Great Kapok Tree and talked about the importance of trees and caring for the Earth.workoutdoors

We are learning to identify poison ivy, wild muscadines, ferns and we also spotted a rare pink trillium bloom. Other discoveries have been caterpillars, various insects, a hawk, lizards and a frog.pinktrillium

I have watched the children, alive with wonder and creativity, gather sticks and branches and leaves for building. Using visual spacial awareness, willpower and a lot of collaboration, they have constructed a wall, sitting spaces and two forts.awormWe have talked about the importance of following directions and have established some rules for the outdoor groups:

  • We all must work together – no wandering off from the group.
  • What we find in nature must stay in nature – we are guests in the forest.
  • We are learning to respect living things.

What can we do with the treasures we find? Decorate forts, make a mandala, and create an outdoor loom for weaving.webuiltafort

Please check out the following articles on the importance of spending time in nature:

Beyond Recess: How to Explore the Forest as a Kindergarten Class

Green Spaces Make Kids Smarter

Kids Need Access to Nature for Mental Health

 

–Kellie

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