Providing open-ended activity prompts and supplying children with materials that mirror the current seasons makes for joyful, individualized and creative learning.
G independently creates a costume for one of our “bowling bunnies.” We invite G to teach others to share her process so they can join in the fun of costume design. We gather flower petals, tissue, construction paper, scissors, tape and glue in the play yard. We are immersed in the sounds of spring–birds chirping, squirrels scurrying and even a lawn mower buzzing in the distance. Some children assemble costumes for a bunny and others build crowns for themselves. This is a thrilling process. One child even heads home to create a crown for their beloved stuffie.
We introduced Spider (puppet) along with a cooperative hide n’ seek game in which children team up to find and gather Spider’s eggs (cotton balls), returning them to their nest. Since then, Spider has become a valued member of our classroom community. Spider delights in individual children; jokes with children who are in a funk; and invites children to teach her how to take on the challenges they have mastered– like swinging or sliding, while expressing her own intimidation about trying such things.
E gathers petals to adorn the home of our pet Spider’s nest of eggs.