School is back in session! The familiar sounds of scurrying preschool feet, sweet song tunes and bursting laughter have returned to Irvine Nature Center!
This week the children spent time getting to know their teachers, their classroom and each other! During imagination stations we played with playdough, puzzles, mailed letters in the writing centers, and made healthy “dinners” in the dramatic play area! We made some beautiful artwork by painting leaves and then stamping them on paper! At circle time we introduced ourselves, played a name game and introduced our class mammal puppets!
We wanted the children to get to know Irvine’s grounds better too! We got comfortable with the trails by going on hikes to the meadow, the wetlands and by circling the upper and lower trail loops! On our hikes the children got to explore the bird blinds, the aviary and the gazebo! They balanced on logs which sometimes led them off trail to explore the deep woods! We encouraged the children to open their senses. What did they see? Hear? Smell? Feel? Some children noticed the leaves had holes in them! “Where could that have come from?” we inquired. Thursday afternoon some rain came, but did that stop the Rabbit class? Of course not! We celebrate all weather at nature preschool! They had a blast jumping in puddles and feeling the raindrops roll down their skin! What a fun way to cool off on a humid summer day!
The Flying Squirrels used a parachute to fly Fiona the flying squirrel puppet to destinations picked by the children! She went to the moon, Saturn, the playground and to everyone’s house, of course! The Chipmunks had fun on the trail as they practiced freezing when Ms. Devon made the “caw caw” sound of a crow and imitated other animals too! Everyone had fun in the meadow! We used sweep nets and bug boxes! Grasshoppers galore! Some of the most exciting moments outside are when we encounter animals! The Bears discovered a praying mantis and a beautiful orange butterfly! The Chipmunks got to touch a snake in the Woodland Garden! The Foxes and Coyotes were excited to explore spider webs! We brought our spray bottles to gently wet them so they were easier to see and we could more closely observe!
Our first week was nothing short of a major success! The teachers and children alike are filled with wonder and adventure and can’t wait to experience more of the magic of mother nature!
Until next week,
The Nature Preschool at Irvine!