Then, we jumped right into art projects. Our first project was to create a cloud with a rainbow in it, just like in the Mixed Up Chameleon book.
Our snack today consisted of watermelon and popcorn-- both favorites of the toddler and primary children.
For our second project, we made colorful mosaic designs.
We also played a special game in the garden today, to help the children experience how the animals blend into their environment. We strategically hid one beanie baby for each child in the group while they waited inside. Then we let them go out to find one. We played a few times, it was such fun!
Before we knew it, it was time to go back out to the garden for water play. The children had a blast in the water, making mud pies, blowing bubbles, playing with shaving cream and digging in the sand.
We found tomatoes, wild strawberries and blueberries growing in our garden - how exciting!
A wonderful week was had by all and we hope to see you next summer!
Today at camp we learned all about Ladybugs! We started off with reading a very interesting book called Are You a Ladybug? The kids loved it! It explains the life cycle of the ladybug (much like the ant and caterpillar, it also goes through metamorphosis) and what ladybugs like to eat the most (aphids). The primary children were fascinated to know that a female ladybug could eat 70 aphids a day while a male ladybug may only eat 40. They were also glad to know that ladybugs are especially helpful for the garden plants. The toddlers read 'Five Little Ladybugs' and laughed at the silly rhymes.
Examining a ladybug we found in the garden.
After reading it was time for art projects. The little ones made a lady bug out of stickers and paper plates.
In the garden we had fun experimenting with bubbles. We tried a new mixture today. The recipe was: 6 cups of water, 2 cups of dishwashing detergent and 1 cup of corn syrup. The bubbles were very 'sturdy' and the children were delighted they could catch the bubbles in their hands.
We also did something I have been wanting to try for a while. We made a giant waterbed out of a tarp and duct tape! This idea came from the awesome blog 'Play at Home Mom' I highly recommend checking it out for fun ideas to do at home this summer.
More outdoor fun...
A great time was had by all, and we are looking forward to learning about insect camouflage tomorrow!
Our day began with making our snack a little early, since it needed a chance to freeze. The children called it, "Butterfly Nectar" and it consists of orange juice (freshly squeezed by the children in this case), crushed pineapple and mashed banana (also mashed by the children) combined together into a frozen smoothie/slushie/popsicle kind of treat.
While our Butterfly nectar was in the freezer, we read a lovely poem about caterpillars and butterflies from the book Outside Your Window. Then we moved into talking about the life cycle and body parts of the butterfly. The children were fascinated by the fact that Ants and Butterflies both go through a metamorphosis and that they both have antennae, a head, thorax and abdomen. The main difference (appearance aside) is that butterflies are more solitary, while ants live in community colonies. Also, butterflies have a cool tongue called a proboscis that helps them to sip nectar from the flowers like a straw. Butterflies also smell with their feet (this was particularly silly sounding!).
We used coffee filters and food coloring to create tie dye butterflies. And with some finishing touches, will look just like them!
The toddlers enjoyed drawing on coffee filters to make butterflies, reading 'The Very Hungry Caterpillar' and other books, dancing like butterflies, and exploring in the sensory bin.
Soon, it was time to go out and play in the garden. We had fun with bubbles, making mud pies, playing in the sand, and of course playing with shaving cream and water.
A fun time was had by all and we look forward to tomorrow where we will explore the life of a ladybug!
Today we explored the world of ants! We talked about the life cycle of the ant and how it goes through a metamorphosis just like a butterfly - egg, pupa, larva and adult ant. We also made observations about how ants have six legs and we have two; how they use their antennae to feel and smell (and how silly that would be if we had noses on our hands!); and about how ants have three body parts - head, thorax and abdomen.
Our first art project was to create an "ant's picnic". We made a checkered tablecloth with sponges and red paint and then used a pencil eraser to create the three body parts of the ant.
We looked at pictures of ants to learn more about the body parts before starting the project.
We then took a little break from art to make and eat our snack for the day - ants on a log using celery, sun butter and raisins.
Our second art project of the day was to make ants out of egg cartons. The children loved realizing that the egg cartons made the perfect three segments for the body parts of the ant - head, abdomen and thorax. And then with the addition of pipe cleaners, they can have six legs and two antennae.
We then headed out to the garden to play and explore. We had fun with sand and worked with the properties of magnets, too. In the photos below, the magnet is under the table and being used to pull the paper clips around. It's like magic!
Water play! Today we added a new pool/sprinkler and there was much fun to be had with the shaving cream.
A fun time was had by all and we look forward to seeing you tomorrow when we explore the wonderful world of butterflies!
Today was our first day of Nature camp! We had a wonderful time and began the day with some coloring.
The toddlers enjoyed exploring some sensory bins using scoops and magnets.
Once all our friends arrived, we gathered to explore some nature treasures.
These treasures are from the garden: a pinecone, stick with lichen, a pine branch with pine needles, pine bark, a feather, a snail shell, a rock and a miniature pine cone. The next set of treasures were particularly exciting!
We examined an alligator snapping turtle shell (and talked about the top- carapace and the bottom- plastron), a snake skin (and talked about how snakes shed their skin), a bluebird nest, a wasp nest and a variety of animal teeth (including an alligator, shark, beaver and a deer hoof).
This chickadee nest sparked some good conversation on how differently birds create their nests. The children had fun identifying the moss, lint and animal hair that were woven together to make this cozy nest. The toddlers enjoyed reading the book 'In the Nest.'
Also in the box were various feathers, a small snake skin, and different types of animal teeth. Pictured above on the right is a beaver's tooth!
We also enjoyed going outside together to listen to all of the nature (and non-nature) sounds we could hear. We heard a variety of birds, an airplane, a leaf blower to name a few.
Before we knew it, it was snack time! Our snack today was trailmix and we made it by going on a scavenger hunt in the building to find each ingredients.
After that it was time to play outside! Here is an aluminum foil 'river' we made. The children enjoyed floating leaves, sticks and other objects from the garden down the river.
We also had fun painting with shaving cream and paint. It is a great sensory experience! Washing off in the sprinklers and pool was a fun way to end the morning.
We also made our tie-dye shirts and can't wait to see how they turned out! We left them soaking overnight to make sure the colors are as bright as possible.
A wonderful time was had by all and we are looking forward to tomorrow where we will explore the world of ants!
We are an AMI accredited Montessori school growing daily in spirit & intellect!