The last month in APAS has flown by! November brought lots of change: time change, leaves falling, temperatures dropping and losing a partial week of APAS together due to Thanksgiving break. Kelsey joined the Afterschool Play Team and Naomi left for maternity leave (Baby Leila (pronounced Layla) was born 11/18!)
With the change of seasons becoming more obvious to us, the falling leaves became one of our most abundant loose parts!
We saw leaf fights, kids raking and jumping in to the leaves and putting the leaves into a plastic pool! But then, just like that, the leaves all blew away!
From there we shifted into Mad Scientist Week! We practiced our Naturalist skills and then did a few experiments together like: coke & mentos, baking soda & vinegar, light through jello and making a ball levitate! Smitha joined us to give an interactive presentation about light and polarization patterns. Shahar brought petri dishes of agar for kids to test the bacteria on their skins and then brought them back the following week so the kids could see how much the bacteria had grown (he is willing to come back and do more experiments with the classrooms- just let him know)! Tasha brought microscopes and lots of different options to view like pond water with planarians and snails! The kids also found other natural materials like leaves, rocks & shells to bring in and view under the microscopes. Thanks again to our guest scientists who shared their skills with our group!
After we ended Mad Scientist Week and the temperatures continued to drop, we noticed a shift with the kids. They weren’t asking for loose parts while outside. We typically brought out a varying array of items and while some were used, most were skipped over! We saw the kids completely enthralled with their secret hideouts. Several revolving groups of friends made forts in the line of pine trees and others used the tall field grasses to create a secret place. It’s been such a joy to watch as the kids so visibly connect with nature, with each other and need nearly no other materials to create their special worlds. The level of imaginative play and creativity we are seeing is simply amazing!
As you’ve seen, we move inside after the sun goes down. We have some kids who still want to enjoy the playground and others who prefer to be indoors as it gets darker. Once inside, we like to bring out loose parts that the kids can use differently each day. We’ve see magna-tile robots, castles & rocket ships. The kids even built a marble luge out of wooden blocks one day! Their creativity and inventiveness know no bounds!
KOOP will be offering an Adventure Winter Camp at University Primary! We’ve planned some amazing projects like marble roller coasters, construction projects, fort building, cooking, felt scene sewing and much more! We’re excited to again open this camp up to the public! Spots are filling up, so register for one or both sessions before December 16!
We have strayed from our curriculum slightly as we are always following the interests of the children. Because the fort building has been such a huge hit in the fields, we are excited to bring more fort materials inside and see what happens. We also look forward to introducing some new materials for small scale construction projects.
Unfortunately this month we have limited pictures due to a camera malfunction. Enjoy the ones we have and we promise to improve next month.