We have started the third year of Appleseeds this week, with new friends and new play things. Our "old" Appleseeds children have enjoyed meeting their new friends and showing them all kinds of new tricks. The weather, for now, is giving us delightfully cool mornings. We have been doing our circle time outside after we have cleaned up our outside toys. I've made our circle to incorporate lots of BIG movement, and so we pretend that we are Old Gnome, waking up and going out into the meadow to see what we can see. We crawl across the pine needles under the clothes line, climb up the hay bale mountain, crawl through a tunnel of "blueberry bushes" and out of our garden gate. Then we log roll down the slip n' slide mat and climb over the climbing dome and come to an "apple tree". We jump and jump to try to reach the (imaginary) apples, and then shake our bodies pretending that we're shaking the tree. We pick up all the imaginary apples, and crawl back up the hill, through the tunnel and over the hay bales. We dump out all the apples which roll all over (so we roll all over), then we settle down to make "applesauce" with our applesauce verse. As you can imagine, the kids and I are exhausted after such an active circle, and so we go in to wash up and have our snack.
Over the week, we've been working on making some pom-pom apples to hang on our branch in our nursery. The children wrap thick yarn around and through a pom-pom form. When they've wrapped it very thickly, I cut through the yarn and bind it in the middle. I remove the form, and then the children can trim up the pom pom so that it's round and full.
I told a story about Old Gnome this week, in which Old Gnome goes down to the pond to do some fishing. He instead finds that Froggy Boggy has been doing somersaults and has bumped his head, needing to be pulled out by Old Gnome. After Froggy is safe and sound, all the frogs and Old Gnome settle down to a nice afternoon of playing. During our lunchtime, I've been reading Peter In Blueberry Land to the children. It is quite a long picture book, so lunch is a perfect way for the children to practice listening to a fairly long story.