“Adults follow paths. Children explore. Adults are content to walk the same way, hundreds of times, or thousands;perhaps it never occurs to adults to step off the path, to creep beneath rhododendrons, to find the spaces between fences” Neil Gaiman The Ocean at the end of the Lane
“Come forth into the light of things, let Nature be your teacher. ” William Wordsworth
The park is our classroom, a place to learn, explore and grow. Since August we have been taking the children to the park, which is over the road from school. This gives children an opportunity to connect with the space and explore their environment.
The children have begun to observe the change in the seasons and its affect upon living things. These interactions with the natural world will form the basis for our unit of inquiry about the process of change in living things.
One of the skills we are developing is the capacity to view, analyse and present findings. The children have been creating observational drawings in their sketch books and larger pieces of paper.
When the children are in the park we talk about respecting the space we share with others. The children are free to explore the space and stay within eye contact of the teacher. This offers us the opportunity to observe how the children interact in different spaces, how their relationships with space and each other are strengthened by these experiences.
In the first week of school we reconnected with the park and shared the space with the local dog walkers.
Our friend the park is going through a period of change. We visited the park and noted the changes in the trees and plants. The children observed the details in leaves and the development of berries on the tree. As we have been focusing on the skill of viewing we offered the children an opportunity to make observations through sketching.
So summer has moved to autumn and our year long journey of observing the change in living things continues.