The past two weeks have been a time of cozy play inside, and very muddy play outside. Outside, we have seen the tips of tulips and daffodils just poking up out of the ground. They may not do much for awhile, but they are a steady reminder that things are going on underneath the surface, and spring will come again! Our circle right now is a gnome circle which includes much stomping and clapping at the same time, a large feat of coordination for young ones. They love it though, and watch intently, imitating me to the best of their ability. We had a story last week about Old Gnome, who discovers snow drops under the snow and makes an icy decoration with them to remind himself that spring will return. When Jack Frost sees Old Gnome's creation, he is delighted and adds a little decoration of his own before quickly flying off.
We did a little less hiking in our woods this past week, mainly because the rain had left it just a bit too soggy, such that even with boots and rain pants, water would still leak over the tops of boots, soaking feet and pants! So we did a bit more exploring of our own play yard. One of the favorites this week was building a fire station with the large blocks and wood planks. To an outsider, it was more obstacle course than fire station, but it provided heavy lifting and balancing for the children. There were many cake makers as well, and also children worked at dissecting an old stump using their hammers and fingers. It has been such a delight to listen to children work with one another and direct their own play. This is something that children rarely get to do unless they have a significant amount of time to let their play unfold with one another. An example would be a conversation I heard recently: A: I want the hammer. B: I'm using it right now, but there's another somewhere. A: No, there isn't. I need a hammer. B: Okay, when I'm done with it. But you know what I need right now? I need a bucket for some sand. You wanna get a bucket and make a cake for me? A: I'll go get it. B: Yeah, let's make some cakes. I'm done with the hammer, you wanna use it? A: No, let's make some cakes. As you can probably guess, this was a conversation between an older and a younger child. But the way they can be flexible with one another is such a useful skill.
....And this has been the state of our rain pants this week.