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A NC Mom to 4 wonderful boys, Wife to GREAT Husband, & TK Teacher!! Hey... Add a comment if you want!! I'd love to hear from you!!!

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Friday, November 8, 2013

Leaves and Fall

Fall has finally made it to our neck of the woods here in NC and what a beautiful sight it is.  The weather has a nice chill to the air, the breeze brings with it a wonderful fresh air smell, and we are loving spending amazing mornings outside in the Outdoor Classroom. 
Last year my team teacher and I decided to utilize an area in our nearby nature area, that is owned by our school, but shared with the community.  We took the students out there and let them play, just PLAY.  We found the results to be dramatic.  The time outside in the natural environment brought a calm to our rowdiest students, it brought a confidence to our shyest students, and it brought out abilities that our students didn't even know they had.  It was wondrous to see.   
This year we brought our newest charges out there and although they love it we have had different challenges than last year.  Some of our boys are a little aggressive with the sticks and the "play" has become more of the fighting type than the exploring type.  The last few weeks has been a lot of work for us teachers, but as we continue to creep along the learning path the students are beginning to get it.  They are beginning to see the leaves as roofs for fairy houses, they see the logs as balance beams and the sticks as something to help them balance and not a weapon, and they are beginning to see the beauty in the squirrels, insects and sound of the rustle of leaves in the breeze.  Amazing!!!
We decide to take the book Leaf Man by Lois Elhert to the Outdoor Classroom and read it in the round (which is a place we created to sit and talk).  We pulled out the blankets and found spots on the logs and enjoyed a great rendition of the book. 
Then it was time to create our own Leaf Man with things we found in the Outdoor Classroom.  What fun we had!!!

Our Outdoor Classroom is a special part of our program.  Hearing the words, "Get your boots on!" is like music to the 4 year olds ears.  They get so excited and can't wait to get out there.  It is a great way to connect our classroom learning to real life experiences and I am so happy to be working in a school that has one. 
We also completed our first Family Project.  We love including our families in our classroom work and this was a fun way to start that home-school connection.  We did a Pumpkin Literature Project.  The students choose a pumpkin, then choose a book, then choose a character from the book and made their pumpkin into that character.  We had some great characters!! The kids loved to talk about their project as they created them at home and I loved getting the play by play from them as the week went by, then to finally see them all come in was exciting for them as well as me!!!

Don't you love them!!! 
 I don't know if the minion is my favorite or the Llama.
It is wonderful to love your job as much as me!!!

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