Showing posts from January, 2015

What lives in the river?

On this day we put out a variety of materials and Invited the children to create things that live in or around the river. They made fish, turtles, snails and birds. These kinds of projects are a great way for children to be able to show us what they know. It also gives us the opportunity to gauge the classes interest in a subject and to see where we might go from here. There was some talk about wanting to know more about fish.

Floating and Sinking

Do you think it will sink or float? This activity was a great way to explore the idea of scientific discovery.  The children made "predictions" and we're able to test them. We talked about why we thought certain things floated and certain things sunk.

Wading Water Birds

One day during morning meeting we had a conversation about birds that live near water. They named, seagulls, pelicans,ducks and flamingos.   We read a book and found out there are many more. Some of the children wanted to draw and paint pictures of birds they learned about in our book. We asked the question "why do some of the birds have such long legs?" One of our friends told us, " they have long skinny legs so they can find food in the water" We found out that these birds are called wading birds.

The Weight of Water

Today we asked the question "where do puddles go?" One friend told us, "it dries up into the sky, into the air then the rain clouds pour out the water that the clouds held in the sky."  Another friend said, " I didn't know clouds were made of water!" We had a great conversation about the water cycle. We introduced words like, "condensation", "evaporation" and "vapor". We did an activity with cotton balls and water to show how when clouds get "heavy" it rains. We used our scale to give the children an opportunity to discover the weight of water.

Where's Water?

Our class has been talking about water. "Where are the places you find water?" "The river" "A lake" "The ocean"
"A waterfall" "Clouds and rain" The children all worked together to paint a river. One friend asked "what if the river runs out of water?" Another said " there's a lot of water that comes into the river but I don't know where it comes from". A friend quickly added " the water comes from underground" which led to someone asking, " but how does it come up?,  it can't crawl up like bugs. This is the kind of conversation we live for as educators. That moment right there was why we need to be paying attention. This is the spark. The questions are by far more important than the answers. Our river is a work in progress.  We will continue to listen to the questions and together we will look for the answers. Stay tuned.

Water Friends

Our classroom just got some new friends! With all our  talk about water we thought it was a great time to fill our empty aquarium with river rocks, water and a few creatures that live in the water. We now have three snails and two living balls of seaweed called Marimo. The Marimo is a ball of green algae. They form and live in Iceland, Scotland, Japan and only a few other place in the world. The children are intrigued by them in fact surprisingly so. The children love to watch the snails munch on their algae and we have noticed that our work room (where our tank is located) has become the "quiet" room. "Shhhh the snails are eating", "quiet the snails are sleeping".


With all our talk about seasons and specifically Winter we have had many conversations about snow. Why doesn't it snow in Florida? What is snow?  This has led us to want to know a bit more about water.  We read that our planet has more water than land! This activity was a fun way to start exploring water. A container with mirrors placed in the bottom gave us the opportunity to see how our reflections changed with the movement of water. We talked about all the places we might find water that moves. Places like the ocean, springs and rivers. As an extension activity we added ice cubes. We discovered how fast warm water can turn cold! We asked "where did the ice cubes go?" Everyone seemed to know that they melted, but what does that mean? This was a popular activity with the children. Water is a fascinating element.  We have much more to explore and discover.

Winter Portraits

After coming back from our holiday break the class began speaking about the different seasons.  We know there are 4 seasons and we are now in winter. We asked how is winter different from the other seasons? The class told us that it is cold out and the sun is not out as much. To document this we decided to have the class draw winter portraits. We spoke one on one about how we dress differently during this season and how certain pieces of clothing keep certain parts of our body warm. We will continue exploring this season and see where is takes us. 

Cold Winter Days

It may not snow in Florida but it gets cold. Why so cold but no snow? We started pondering that question this week. We decided to take matters into our own hands. Corn starch and shaving cream make an awesome "snow like" concoction. It was literally hours of fun.
We found that making a snow man out of the mixture proved to be difficult. We turned to paper and chalk and created them another way. 
We had great conversations about the places where it does snow. Many of the children have had the opportunity to experience snow and all of them are very familiar with Frosty and Olaf.