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Saturday, February 15, 2014


One of our on going art projects has been looking at trees.  We spent a lot of time in the Fall looking at leaves, the changing colors, and identifying what type of tree the leaves were coming from.  Now that it is Winter, the children have been looking out the art room at all our winter trees.  The way the bare branches look without their leaves, the color of the sky through the branches, and the direction of the branches.  Here is a little gallery of the different types of trees that the children have painted.

Below is a bunch of pictures the children picked from to observe and try and paint a tree similar to.


Young artists at work.

The Kindergartners enjoyed drawing their pictures with permanent marker and then painting in the background. 

                           "An Apple Tree"                                                "A Tree at Sunset"

After one of their India Ink Paintings were dry, we went and revisited the painting to add some color to the sky.

We also used plastic wrap to place on top of the paintings while they were wet to create a textured sky.  They look like wispy clouds. 

Some of the children made their own ink for the next set of tree paintings.  Using our Sumi'e painting kits the children made their own ink buy rubbing their ink sticks on a grinding stone with a little water.  They then went ahead and made their simple Sumi-e  style tree paintings.

For young 3-5 years olds, I think these tree paintings are beautiful and capture their way of seeing trees.  Can't wait to see what will happen when we observe the buds on trees, or some of the flowering trees on the property.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

You've Got Mail!

Valentine's Day came early this year, but also right on time with all our excitement of 
playing Post Office at school.

The children were invited to bring Valentines to share with their friends at school and to mail in our school Post Office., to say they were excited is an understatement, they were ecstatic on Wednesday!

They came in with their Valentines, and then went to the Post Office to mail their letters.

As they delivered the mail they were asked to look at the spelling of the names on the Valentines and then to match it with the spelling or pictures of their friends on the mailboxes.  It was a flurry of action but I am happy to say later when they opened their mail, no one had mail delivered to the wrong mailbox.  Not bad for novice postal workers.

After the mail was delivered we closed the Post Office for a little bit to settle the children into play and Valentines activities.  We would re-open after snack.

Some friends came and helped me get ready for our science experiment for the day.  I froze beet juice and vinegar in heart trays, and our helpers were preparing the warm baking soda water that would melt and fizz their hearts.

After a snack of heart shaped pancakes and telling our friends we love them, Cupid hid hearts in the school and we had a heart hunt.

 They were on the move, so expect some blurry pictures.

The game was a success and instead of a winner with the most, our objective was to see if we found all 40 hearts, which we did.
After the heart hunt, the children gathered on the circle rug, and patiently waited to go to the post office to see if any mail came in for them while it was closed.  It was so cute having them greet me and say "do I have any mail?"  and their excitement to receive their mail.


Throughout the week the children have also been making Valentines for their parents and we continued our talk about how the Post Office works, and that we will send their Valentines as outgoing mail from our Post Office, to the big Post Office in town, and then from there it will be delivered to their homes.

Here are our artist hard at work over the past week.

They finger painted over hearts that were taped to their paper.

I love how some use one finger, some both hands, and other prefer paint brushes.
The hearts were later taken off and glued inside by the children.  Many also added stickers and stamps to their cards.

The outside and inside of a card

Adding text and addressing envelops

I just love these rainbow hands!

Our mail ready to go out.

And they're off!