Early Childhood Programs Blog

Nature’s Sweet Sounds

September 30, 2016 - Forest Dreamers

We Forest Dreamers love action, excitement and adventure! Last week we started taking closer looks at the native and non native plants of Irvine. This week, we took a closer listen to the forest. We took a silent walk down the trails-but don’t think we weren’t communicating… we used different ways of ‘talking’ other than our voices! We made up sign language  for some of the things we heard. We found that hand gestures were helpful to communicate to everyone where we should go, how long we should wait, how big or small something was or where a sound was coming from!

We then played a Native American game called Tender of the Fire. It is another “creep up” type of game they played to strengthen the sense of alertness the tribes would face. Quick, silent feet were a must to keep from being caught and possibly held prisoner! In the game, after the Fire Tender collects his wood and gets all warm and cozy by the fire, he falls asleep! One by one the enemy tribe tries to sneak in and steal his wood for the fire! If the tribes footsteps wake the fire tender, he must point to the area from which he heard the noise and if he is correct, the tribesman is caught!

On Tuesday, the meadow was beckoning us with its gentle breeze and abundant milkweed and we even saw a few Monarchs this time! However, Thursday, the meadow was a very different place! We had a ‘sit spot’ which is an individual area for personal observation and quiet reflection. The meadow was like a tempest that day! It was very different to see the comparisons! It also was very sweet to hear the FD’s tell us why they were thankful for the rain. We talked a bit about why the rain is a great thing to have and to experience!

Thursday we also headed down to the stream and explored that area. Some of us practiced quietly creeping up on frogs (although we didn’t see any!) and others were building a log bridge. Ms. Sophie even pointed out some riverbank clay and we happily took some in our containers to use for later!

After seeking shelter from the rain in the barn, we read a great folktale from tribes of the Great Plains Region called Coyote Makes Man by James Sage. The story’s use of clay gave us the great idea of using our riverbank clay for an activity next Tuesday! We are just full of great ideas! 🙂

Muddy on, Forest Buddies!