We have been visiting the park opposite school throughout the year to observe how nature changes with the seasons. The children have enjoyed paddling in the stream in summer and climbing over the rocks in winter when there are no plants to damage. They have watched the leaves change color and have gathered fallen leaves for classroom collages. More recently they have visited the park to view the cherry blossoms and the arrival of spring.
The children are developing an appreciation of the awe and wonder of nature. They have recorded their observations in sketchbooks that show how the park changes over the course of a year. The children have made connections between how the park changes over time and our unit of inquiry into where we are in place and time. In Japanese culture, the passing of seasons is a significant event and our recognition of the changing seasons in school helps children to make connections to our host country culture.