Splashes of Color
As the days grow colder and darker, it is up to us to create our own warmth, light, and cheer. And here at Tamworth Village Homeschool, we have a group of kids who are amazing at doing just that! With splashes of watercolor, a good dose of sparkles, and an unending supply of creativity, these children really know how to brighten up even the coldest of days.
This week, we focused on the concept of gratitude with the class. All of the books we read this week either directly or indirectly led us to discussions about gratitude, and we began developing the practice of sharing things we are grateful for as a class. This was such a lovely example of the beauty of a multi- age classroom! Gratitude can be a very abstract concept for our younger students, but as they all listened to their classmates share ideas, such as "I'm grateful for the sun," or "I'm grateful for colors," or "I'm thankful for my warm hat," even our youngest students began raising their hands with new ideas! At times we challenged students to cultivate gratitude more specifically by asking questions like, "why are you thankful for your mom?" We loved hearing them express their thanks even more fully as they shared, "I'm grateful for my mom because I love her snuggles" or "I'm thankful for the birds because I love hearing them sing!"
We decided to capture all of their wonderful ideas by making a "thankfulness tree" to remind them of their many blessings. First, the children got to work painting and sparkling up some branches that we then arranged in a mason jar vase. We filled the base with beautiful pinecones and sparkling acorns. Next, the children set to work painting dozens of beautiful watercolor leaves. At our morning and afternoon meetings we wrote what we are all thankful for on those leaves, and then hung them on the branches. There were so many leaves and so much gratefulness that we decided to hang the overflow on one of our bigger "twinkle trees"! We hope you enjoy the sentiments they've written on our tree, and the ever-changing art displays around the classroom when you visit. We are so proud of our thoughtful and creative classmates. :)
Some other projects we enjoyed this week were: making mosaics from colorful corn kernels, decorating pipe cleaner trees with buttons and beads, pretending to harvest cranberries in our "cranberry bog" water table, and making snowmen and snow scenes with "snow dough", pinecones, and other natural elements.
Wednesday brought our very first snowfall, and what a lovely snow it was!!! We were so happy to see the excitement as all of our students braved the elements to come to school. To make the most of the weather, they headed straight out the back door upon arrival to play in the snow (only stopping for an outdoor snow picnic snack!) before settling back inside to get warm and cozy once again. (So as not to take away from the outdoor fun, we decided to have rice cakes and peanut butter instead of baking corn bread today, but we plan to bake with the class again very soon!)
This week, we were so very happy to welcome Ivy to our three-day class!. Ivy has been a two-day student, familiar with our routines, and was welcomed so lovingly by her new friends. :)
Stay warm and stay safe, until we meet again on Monday!