Frog Fridays: So Much to Celebrate

Today at Morning Meeting Ms. Megan shared about a caterpillar that the children had found at Toad Mountain.  Ms. Kim and the children used field guides to try to determine which caterpillar it was but were unable to determine it.  Nevertheless, it was exciting and the children learned researching skills.

Afterwards Peeper Frogs went to Huntley Meadows with Ms. Bani and Science Sarah.  Their goal was to make it to the wetlands so that they could see the beaver lodge that the beavers had been working at.  It is the lodge that is near the first bench, and it is quite a project!  Once they got there, Science Sarah read them a book about beavers.

Cricket Frogs were so excited to know that the Thanksgiving Lunch is only one day away.  They were all doing decorations, making Thanksgiving wreaths with Ms. Rebeca.

Chorus Frogs visited the goats with Mr. Mark.  We noticed that Frida and Gizmo were both asleep so we let them bask in the sunshine and instead pet Henry and Max (well, Max was also busy gobbling a piece of pumpkin).  We also did our Feeling Buddies lesson inside about what to do when Anger “Gets a Hold” of us.

Green Tree Frogs played grocery store with Ms. Kim.  They pretended to drive to the store and park.  They also took turns shopping and weighing vegetables.  They really enjoyed bagging the groceries and pretended to swipe their grocery cards to pay!

Enjoy the weekend!

~ The Frog Team ~

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Tadpole Tuesdays: Autumn Colors!

This week we will be learning about “Autumn leaves and colors”. Today the children chose their favorite animals for our “Wild Animal Costume Parade” and they painted their costumes.

At the art table, the children used crayons to draw their favorite animals. They used different color crayons to draw. We talked about the colors so the children could learn and discover more!

In the back room, the children built train tracks as  a team and they built tunnels as well. They built the tunnels, giving a support, and then they drove their trains under the tunnel. Some of them danced with music that was playing.

In the front room, the children built trains and towers from Legos. They built tall towers as a team; some of them were holding the tower to keep it safe and some of them were building. We read books that talked about autumn leaves and sang an autumn-themed song.

Outside the children painted their animal costume for our “Wild Animal Costume Parade”. Some of them shared  about their costume with other friends and made animal sounds. We looked at different trees for signs of autumn. The children started to point out the different color leaves. Some of them tried to catch the leaves in the air.

The jumpers went to Toad Mountain to play with the Frogs. They played an animal running game and some of them baked in a pan with mulch and water. They enjoyed looking for ingredients for their bakery!

It was Great Exploring Day at the Pond!!!

Sincerely,

The Tadpole Team

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Frog Friday: Mystery of Rotten Tomatoes & Puppetry

Right before Morning Meeting several Frogs and I picked a ripe cantaloupe from the garden.  It smelled absolutely delicious and was turning yellow.

We also picked several large, rotten tomatoes that had holes in them.

Immediately investigation started about what had happened to these poor, little tomatoes.  Quite quickly Frog Naturalists determined that an animal must have eaten it, but which animal?  Kids had several ideas:  a mouse, raccoon, owl, and even a mole.  We discussed our ideas at Morning Meeting, and only felt it would be natural to talk to Squeak, our mouse puppet, and Wilford, our owl puppet.

Once inside, Bumble Bee harshly accused Squeak of eating the tomato.  Squeak became nervous and tried to hide.  Rover stepped in and helped mediate the conflict between Bumble Bee and Squeak.  It turns out that Squeak needed some food and didn’t know where else to look, so he ate part of the tomatoes, but thought to leave some for us.  Once one of the children shared another tomato with Bumble Bee, and all was settled.  Although it is just a “tad” bit unlikely that a mouse ate part of that tomato, why not entertain the kids and go with their ideas?

Peeper Frogs went with Ms. Megan and Science Sarah to Huntley Meadows.  They saw some giant spiders—’tis the season.  Last night while taking out the trash I almost walked into a spider web with a large spider as well!  The spider web looked glorious in the light.  I also heard the Peeper Frogs bumped into one of our very own Frog Parents with their doggies!

Cricket Frogs made a most delicious yogurt fruit salad with Ms. Rebeca.  I can attest that the salad was absolutely delicious.  The children spent close to an hour cutting up apples, mango, and grapes.  Then, they mixed it with some yogurt to make a refreshing salad.

Green Tree Frogs read Shubert is a Star by Dr. Becky Bailey with Ms. Bani.

Chorus Frogs helped Bumble Bee and Squeak resolve the conflict over the eaten tomatoes.  Then, they met Happy and Sad, two of the buddies from our Feeling Buddies Curriculum.

Sincerely,

The Frog Team

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Tadpole Tuesday: Exploring Pumpkin Blossoms

Dear Tadpole Families,

Today early in the morning the children explored around our play ground.

They noticed morning dew on the grass and had great time sweeping with their hands and they were saying, ” I made the rain drop” then let the rain drop fall from their hands back on the grass. We talked about the water cycle.

At the art table, the children looked at the different feeling faces with Ms. Sadeka and created feeling masks with popsicle sticks and glue.

In the back room, the children built mazes from big waffle blocks with Ms. Yashoda.

They worked as a team today. When they lost their interests building then we played musical instruments and danced with music. We also did freeze dance it was so amazing to watch how our little friends has their body control!

In the front room, the children had a picnic with Ms. Jessica. They cooked and shared with their friends and the teachers. Some of them were feeding baby dolls and some of them were busy driving little cars and trucks around the room. We read books, sang “We are a Star” and  practiced taking deep breaths at our small group time.

Outside the children explored pumpkin blossoms by sitting next to it and watching bees as they moved from blossom to blossom. This is called a sit spot for the Tadpoles. We said thank you to the bees for pollinating our pumpkin blossoms… so we can have pumpkins! They drew different feeling faces on the side walk with Ms. Angelica. They also enjoyed riding cars and tricycles on the sidewalk.

Some of the children visited our mini farm with Ms. Linda and fed grass to the goats and some of them were busy playing at the water table with Ms. Teresa.

The Jumpers, visited our meadow and walked around the berry patch pretending to go into mazes with the Frogs. Our Jumpers are proud to be able to visit the Toad Mountain and play with the Frogs. They dug with shovels in the digging pit at the Toad Mountain and played Hungry Hippos with the Frogs.

It was Great Day of Exploring at the Pond!!!

Sincerely

The Tadpole Team

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Management Musings: A Sit Spot with the Frogs

Last week I did a “sit spot,” which is a Core Routine from our Coyote’s Guide to Connecting with Nature model. As I was sitting and watching/waiting for nature, a few boys came and asked me what I was looking for…

G: I’m looking at nature.
Frog 1: Well, I want to look.
Frog 2: What are we looking at?
G: Let’s wait and see.
Frog 3: I see vultures.
G: I see them too. What are they doing?
Frog 1: I see a stick. Can I have it?
Frog 2: I want the stick.
Frog 3: Get the stick, Ms. Gail! Please!!!!!

(Desperation sets in for the stick wink emoticon )

G: Is this what you all see?
Frogs: YES!!!

(I go and get the stick and bring it back to the group)

Frog 1: It looks like a knife.
Frog 2: It looks like a shovel.
G: What else can it be?
Frog 3: I think it’s a walkie-talkie.

G: If I give it to you (Frog 3), what will you do?
Frog 3: I will call other Frogs and we will talk and then play and form a plan.

G: (Gives stick to Frog 3) Sounds great, Frogs! Thanks for enjoying a sit spot with me.

~~
I observed the play for another 15 minutes to see the value and effectiveness of the sit spot…

Each boy took turns with the walkie-talkie and began noticing the vultures that were present in the trees toward the Tadpole Yard. They began speculating on why some vultures were in one tree and others were starting to fly. Two other children joined the conversation and discussed vulture food, how they hunt, and why they need nests.

~~
This all began because we sat and waited… and because there was no agenda on “how” or “what” the sit spot represented. It was also adjusted to be a bit more age-appropriate than what a sit spot could be for an older child or of course, for an adult. (Silence wasn’t a primary goal wink emoticon )

One single sit spot resulted in a total of 20 minutes of unique, diverse, nature-based, gender neutral, highly engaging, critical-thinking, socially connected, emotionally aware, and enjoyable LEARNING…

It begins with us, as the model. Nature is so capable of leading the rest.

Much love, School Family

P.S. If I had more time, I would talk about how the Tadpoles helped it “rain flowers” by safely climbing low branches on the bushes. ‪#‎FrogPondKids‬‪#‎NatureBasedEducation‬ ‪#‎MudIsAToy‬ ‪#‎TreesAreCurriculum‬

(Gail, Executive Director)

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Tadpole Tuesday: Monday’s Sunny Post!

Everyone was so happy to see the sun shining this morning!

This morning at the art table Ms. Subhoi had out the play-doh for the children. They were busy using mixing bowls, rolling pins, spatulas and wooden spoons to bake many goodies.

Ms. Awatif opened up the media table where the wetland was converted over into an ocean animal habitat complete with sand! The children enjoyed playing with the sea turtles, dolphins and sharks.

In the back room Ms. Jessica was with the children pretending to be a train. The children all held hands and created a train that traveled through the back room collecting more children as they went along.

In the front room the Ms.Linda had the bristle blocks out for the children. They were creating crowns and bracelets to wear for one another and enjoyed sharing their creations with everyone this morning.

Outside the children were so delighted to discover a new toy in the yard!

To some it was a house and to others it was a castle. We had so many patient friends who waited their turn to venture inside the home and check out the mailbox and flowers in the windowsill. They were all so excited to have their turn to open the door and ring the door bell as well.

Other children enjoyed feeding the goats some fruit salad this morning.

They loved watching the goats lick and bite the pieces of honeydew and apples through the fence. Even some chickens came to join in a few pecks to the honeydew as well.

Over Toad Mountain Ms. Subhoi and the children had a fun time rolling logs down the hillside. Other children were digging in the dirt with shovels to search for any bugs that might join them. The monkey bar dome was another area that the children were climbing while others were swinging with friends.

Sincerely,

The Tadpole Team

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Tadpole Tuesday: Welcoming a Silk Moth!

This morning at the art table children were using Play-Doh to create cookies of many different shapes. Other children also helped to make a tea cup set and joined in sharing their creations with one another.

In the back room children used the soft balls to play catch with one another. Many practiced making eye contact with their friend before tossing it in their direction to keep the game going smoothly.

In the front room Tadpole children had out various puzzles to share with one another. Many children also took a peek at the seedlings that they planted in pots two weeks ago and were delighted to see the continued growth.

Outside Our Tadpole teachers had a wonderful surprise to share with everyone. Last fall a cocoon was found and placed in a terrarium for children to observe and this weekend out came a giant silk moth! The Polyphemus Moth is a common local moth and all the children came to see the beautiful changes it had undergone in our absence. Many noticed and saw that it was brown and furry with some hints of pink on the wings.

In the sandbox children were having a tea party with Ms. Linda that then turned into a baking party. Many cakes and even some pancakes were made with the sand and sand box tools.

Over on Toad Mountain the swings and the slides were the favorite choice today. Others found many different flowers in the yard and also splashed with water out in the yard.

We look forward sharing some fun science and art projects planned for this week!

Sincerely,

The Tadpole Teaching Team

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Tadpole Tuesdays: Thanksgiving Week Recap

(Week after Thanksgiving)

This week we will be learning about the sun and moon, day and night.

Today, at the art table the children colored the Thanksgiving coloring page with crayons. We talked about spending time with our families and their Thanksgivings. One little friend said she had a party with grandma and grandpa, then she started naming her cousins. Most of the children seemed eager to share about their Thanksgivings with their friends and the teachers. It was great to see the children so excited.

At the media table, the children played with dried leaves, pine cones, and feathers. The children touched and felt the feathers. Some of them were trying to tickle their friends with the feathers. Then we talked about the birds and how the feathers keep them warm in the winter.

In the back room, the children built with the wooden blocks with Ms. Marisa. They constructed a tall tower as a team. Then they knocked it down then built it back up again. Some of them also enjoyed playing on the sit ‘N’ spin toys going around and around.

In the front room, the children put on the dress up clothes and looked into the mirror proudly. Some of them took care baby dolls. They fed them, put the baby dolls to sleep, and read stories to the baby dolls.  Some of them were busy cooking at the kitchen corner and sharing with their friends and teachers. We read books, sang songs, and had circle time.

Outside the children enjoyed jumping in the puddles. They played hide and seek at the play houses. Some of them were busy baking by the sand box.

They also enjoyed riding cars on the side walk. Some of them were trying to look for the worms under the logs. We talked about how little bugs and insects don’t like the cold weather.

The Jumpers went to the play ground to play with the Frogs. They enjoyed jumping in the puddles and digging in the dirt pile with the shovels. Some of them were looking through the magnifying glass.

It was a fun rainy day at the Pond!!!

Sincerely,

The Tadpole Team

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Frog Fridays:

Today Frogs turned into vultures and soared over much of Toad Mountain looking for food.  First, we pretended to find some deer in the corner of Toad Mountain, by gate to Huntley Meadows.  Then, we imagined there was food in the tunnel.  We put our arms out as wide as they could go and soared back to the tunnel.  When we ate, we made sure to share food with one another.

Leopard Frogs played Nocturnal Animals with Ms. Megan in the backroom.  I am not certain which animals the children chose to be, but I can imagine there were quite a few cheetahs and wolves, and a unicorn mixed in here and there.

Some of the Bullfrogs made Rover, Perseus, Squeak, Rover, Elizabeth the 1st, and Speedy come to life.  It is impressive and so funny to see the children act out the voices of the puppets.  They really do believe the puppets are real (so do I).

The Pickerel Frogs put some finishing touches on their costumes.  Some of the children put ears or horns on their headbands so they could wear them with their costume.  Others glued their tails on their costume and finished coloring them in!

Other than soaring around Toad Mountain as vultures, the children enjoyed rolling tires and digging for Dinosaur bones.  Several children also played pretend games.

It was another wild day at the Pond!

Mr. Mark

Frog Lead Teacher

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Tadpole Tuesdays: Milestones, Seeds, and Leaves

This week we will be learning how “Plants make seeds and Trees lose leaves.” We are looking at a tree everyday and watching to see the leaves changing colors. We will also compare different types of seeds. Today, at the art table the children helped their friends to color tadpole tails.

Today, two of our friends lost their tails and became Frog. We did our good-bye ritual.  When I walked out from the frog class I felt sad. Saying goodbye is not easy. Even though it is sad, we still would like to congratulate the children and the families for reaching this milestone!

At the media table, the children played with the leaves and the twigs. They poked holes in the leaves with the twigs. They also counted the twigs. In the back room, the children built with the Legos. They built a city as a group. When they were done building they admired their city proudly.

In the front room, the children did animal puzzles and tried to imitate each animal sound. Some of them put on dress-ups and looked at the mirror. Some of them had fun cooking at our kitchen center and sharing the food with their friends and teachers. We also read books and sang songs.

Outside, the children tried to create leaf prints by dipping the fresh leaves into the different colors of paint and pressing them onto the construction paper to make the leaves print. Some of them decided leaf prints were not fun enough and dipped their hands into the paint.

One child’s mom brought cabbage for the goats and the children fed it to the goats. Thank you for the vegetables! The children had fun giving it and of course the goats enjoyed eating it.

The Jumpers went to Toad Mountain to play with the Frogs. They had fun screaming in the tunnel and played a running game. Some of them collected twigs and pretended to build a campfire. They played in a group and had a long conversation about the camping and the campfire. Some of them helped to dig the Frogs‘ garden.

It was another Great Nature Exploring day at the pond!

Sincerely,

Yashoda

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