It is hard to believe that Term one has been and gone. One of the first things that sparked curiosity in the kinder room was the story of Eric the Caterpillar. Deanna introduced this Facebook page to Paula, who in turn engaged the children with his story. It was the story of Eric the Caterpillar’s journey to becoming a tailed emperor butterfly.
We followed up on this story by creating our own interpretations of butterflies by doing folded paper and splotches of paint paintings. Alfie suggested that we could make our own caterpillar and butterfly puppets. In the rapidly moving arena of kinder curiosity, Louis and Mel guided us into the direction of spiders. Louis and his Mum discovered a beautiful spider crawling in the hallway leading to the kinder room. Mel quickly caught the spider and set up an observation tank for the children. Coincidentally they had also found a huntsman spider exoskeleton in their horse paddock for the children to examine. Louis told everyone that came into the room that he had found the “dangerous creature” this morning. Arthur was convinced that it was a bird eating spider. To show just how big a bird eating spider could be Paula went to the resource shed and found a large spider figurine.
Our next spark of curiosity came when Raelene suggested that she and the children begin to dig over the planter box for our bush tucker garden. The children enthusiastically began to dig and dig and then combine new soil into the planter. Once they had completed that job, it was time for the plants to go in. Raelene and the children planted Murrnong (daisy yams), Australian lemon grass, Minchenberries, Saltbush and Warburton greens.
Chinese New Year was celebrated in the kinder room. One of our families kindly lent us a Lion head, which the children were able to try on. As this was a fragile artefact, the children decided to make their own dragonhead from a box.
The children wore the crafted dragonhead and pretended to be a dragon moving around their peers. This indicated that the children had started to establish an understanding of a specific cultural symbol. The children explored lantern decorations and the traditional Chinese dessert called “Tang Yuan”. They were able to explore the food and culture in the Chinese restaurant setting, by wearing Chinese costumes and role-playing a chef and their customers. The children tried to pick up toy food with chopsticks and pretended to cook and eat noodles, glutinous rice balls and dumplings in the kitchen corner. There was also the odd cup of tea served.
These are some of the ways the kinder children engaged in the experiences during Chinese New Year:
The children explored a bird’s nest that Paula found in one of her trees at home and had bought to show the children. They were amazed with how the bird was able to build the nest and were able to take a closer look and talk about what things the bird had used to make it. Discussions were also had on what bird may have owned the nest, thinking about what birds would have been too big for the nest and wouldn’t fit in it, and what birds would have been small enough for it to be their home.
After listening to The Very Busy Spider, and watching videos of spiders making webs, the children and Paula decided to see if they could build their own web. Using a ball of wool and teamwork this goal was achieved. Ari volunteered to be the fly caught in the web and all the spiders had a delicious feast.
Another ongoing project has been observing the life-cycle of plants. We sprouted sprouts and had mini green houses on the kinder window in which we germinated broad bean seeds.
This is Maxwell’s broad bean just before he planted it into his vegie patch at home. We also have some of our broad bean plant growing in one of the planter boxes in the 3-5 and kinder yard so the children can continue to observe the growth of the plants and observe the life-cycle from seed to plant.
We cannot wait to see what discoveries the children will make in term two.
Paula, Jasmin, Mel, Lauren and Deepali.