Sunday, March 26, 2017

March 20th, 2017 Spring and snow!

Winter goodbye, winter goodbye, you may no longer stay. Springtime is here today. Winter goodbye, winter goodbye. 

A happy vernal equinox at Wrens Nest! And what more of a Vermont way to ring in spring time than playing in the snow..
A cozy morning with some animal friends, like kitty, woofers, and even a deer. 
We learned all about Robin Redbread from Grant! Some favorite facts include that the Robins beautiful blue eggs take 14 days to hatch and a Robin has a lifespan of two years. He also brought in a fun maze that led mother Robin back to her nest. Thank you, Grant!!
So many friends brought sleds to share and we were all so thankful! 
The deep snow with a crunchy layer ontop proved to be hard to walk through and even gave us some sledding challenges...but we trudged on!
Sarah brought in her toboggan which was so much fun. We could fit five or six of us on it and really fly! The challenge was getting it back up the hill, but with a combinations of pushers, pullers, and snow clearers we were able to have many great rides. 

Blowing bubbles! Not cold enough for them to freeze but definitely still fun. 
Snow kitties making their kitty nests. 
Snow angles in the crust...
We made up a game for throwing snowballs. Someone created big boot holes so we made snowballs and tried to land them in the holes-there was a lot of cheering for each other. 
We visited our sit spots to see if there were any changes or signs of spring. Afterwards we shared our observations. Buds were still visible but hadn't changed, some of the green grass from last week was covered up, and we noticed some new branches. 
Lots of snow and sun makes for some soggy kiddos. We went inside for some good lunch and to attempt and dry ourselves out...

We all had fun working on the mazes that Grant brought in as part of his presentation! 
Some cozy time with new books...

We really got relaxed while listening to some stories before going back out to play before we said goodbye. 
Bring on the mud, springtime we are ready for you! 

March 13th Maple Magic!

Let us go to the Sugar Camp 
While the snow lies on the ground
Live in a birch bark wigwam 
Cut a notch in a maple tree
Set a pail on the ground below
Soon the sap will be flowing 
Make a fire in the sugar lodge
So that we may boil the sap 
Bring all the wooden ladels...mmm
In the snow see the rabbit tracks
Hear the call of the chickadee-dee-dee
Do not stop to follow them..
Tis the season of the Sugar Camp, Tis the season of the Sugar Camp

We started off the morning with some fun indoor play, basking in the sunshine. Jonah brought in a book about the Titanic that inspired an impressive replica! 
 We played with light and learned that all of the colors of the rainbow are in light, we just can't see them all the time. 
It was Ezra's turn to teach about his animal, the Raven. My favorite factoid from his presentation was that Ravens will put nuts on the road so that cars will drive over them and crack them open-they are very clever birds indeed! Great job, Ezra!!
A silly song...
Back to the pond to check on the tadpoles that had probably gotten much colder over the past few days! 
We searched for owl pellets and sunny spots to keep us warm as we adventured on the blue trail-a new one for us. 

When we found a nice warm sunny spot, we gathered for a story about the mice who make woodpecker holes into their homes, creating mouse apartment buildings. Then on our way back we found several mouse skyscrapers! 

We found some crystal clear ice that we could see bubbles underneath. We tried to crack it with rocks but it was frozen solid. 
Taking our time on our walk back...
Now today was very special because in the afternoon our classroom was turned into a fine dining establishment with a focus on all things maple. 
Our favorite chef, Samantha, was busy in the kitchen flipping pancakes while we gave our bodies a little warming rest. 

And then, it was time! We donned some festive apparel and agreed that eating in a fancy restaurant means you need some very fancy manners and did we ever! With yes please here and an excuse me madam there you could tell we were someplace special just by listening.  
We taste tested all the different kinds of Grade A maple syrup. Dark robust, amber rich, and golden delicate as well as maple sugar and some maple sap. Soon all you could hear was chewing and yumming, it was delicious! 

Seconds, thirds, and even fourths were had by all of our maple connoisseurs. We took a vote in the end on which was our favorite one to taste. Many of the children voted for all of them :) but in the end it was a tie between dark robust and golden delicate. 
Tis the season of the sugar camp! 

Thursday, March 23, 2017

March 6th. 2017

Drip. Drip. Drip. 

I can feel the sun shining
I can feel wind blowing 
I can smell the sap boiling 

Drip. Drip. Drip. 

A spring like day at Wren's Nest! We enjoyed the new morning light playing inside and catching up with each other. 

Today was our first day of our Animal Presentations! Aurelia was our first presenter and taught us all about her animal, The Jumping Mouse. She made a poster illustrating the jumping mouse that even had a key telling us important facts! She taught us that the Jumping Mouse loves digging, is nocturnal, and likes to eat seeds and berries. She drew a beautiful picture of a hawk and snake-two predators that the Jumping Mouse needs to look out for! Thank you Aurelia! 
The bright sun was warming our faces and we wondered if it was warming other places too. We decided to hike the whole yellow trail looking for signs of spring along the way. 
Our first stop was checking on the bulbs that we planted along the entrance to the yellow trail. They were sprouting!! It was very exciting, and we were careful to cover them back up incase of cold and be careful with our boots. 

Yipee! The children were excited that soon the bees would be able to enjoy their first food of the spring with our crocus and daffodils! 

Half way through the yellow trail we played camouflage and had some very tricky hiders and very sharp eagle eyes.
Jonah found spider eggs in one of his hiding places! 
We tested out the strength of this broken tree and wondered what made this big tree snap. 

At the end of the hike we played in forts and discovered treasures of the forest, like this huge artists conk that had been frozen to the ground. 
Before we said goodbye, continued whittling our sumac sap taps, after going over safety and technique. We have some very talented and focused whittlers! 
 We are savoring the last days of winter and hoping for another day of snow play before its gone!