We have noticed over the course of this month that the kids are getting closer together. Maybe that is just to do with the cold air and the need to be close but whatever the reason it is so encouraging to see new friendships being made, and a level of comfort around each other in the great outdoors. We don't have kids bolting in different directions, as is the worry of many a parent when I talk to them about what we do, but rather this is this desire to stay around their friends and develop this sense of community out in the wild! We have the seen the shy and quiet find their voice in stages, and for some all in one swoop. We have seen the already bold slowly learn to give others a chance to talk. My personal favorite has been watching our older kids lead and encourage our younger ones, and the young kiddos establishing trust but also a sense of independence when they don't need help from a grown up.
Since the colder weather has moved in we have been on trail more, finding our way around the park to the North of our learning area. In the coming months we will be exploring more West towards the canons, metal slide area, and BEYOND! We have been staggered at the endurance being built and the trust being established with our younger charges on the trail. For our older more experienced hikers, their leadership, and confidence is what we hoped for!
Caution! Unfortunately we cannot comb the whole park for hazards and as we have be branching out from our area, it is with sadness that I share that we have found 2 needles since being at Illahee. It is our procedure to notify the park and properly dispose of the needle. That said, in order to prevent kids from picking up what they consider to be an odd sort of treasure we want to familiarize them with what it is and why not to pick it up. If you can also take opportunities when you visit parks to remind them to show an adult before picking curious objects up. For those of you who do not know, the policy for finding needles in parks is to call 911 non-emergency to report the location of a found needle and THEY will dispose of it.
Making Music in the Woods
It was such a treat to have Krystle Slone join us in the program as our Community Member. She shared her skills as a music therapist and the kids were in tune with the musical experience. It was a truly relaxing and community experience. We walked away wanting to bring music more into the classroom. Krystle even left us with a tune that we could continue to sing together in program, typed out below
The kids took away the awareness of making musical instruments out of what they could find in the forest. Krystle had them walk down towards the stump circle and find pieces in the woods that they could use to make music with: stick on the stumps, shaking the leaves, rocks together, stick on the table were among those created. A few adult mentors shared later that a shared glance after the song they learned together spoke to the peace they felt, and the need for a cup of tea to complete the experience.
" Hello sunshine
Hello warm light
Hello birds that are singing good morning
Be kind to everyone
Everyone under the sun "
Slowing Down, Listen and Grooving to the Music
On rainy days, the kids STILL love playing in the rain but their are moments of wanting a break and having a dry space. It is the first season we have really experienced rain and we have found that in that shelter there is a great opportunity to hear the sounds all around and look out like looking out a fishbowl. During our time on leaves, there we SO MANY falling from the tress, and with the rain on the roof it was the perfect setting for some poetry. Gillian also called the big space looking out over the water and forest her "TV" and the kids have taking to watching in that space.
Also during our leaf season, aside from the pure delight of running through a pile of leaves, the kids got an chance to dance like the autumn leaves while listening to the composer Vivaldi. You have not seen the video in the October album, you must!
Two Eagle Nests
One day we were sitting on our blanket, in the only patch of sun we could find with our snack we some birds caught our eyes up above. Young Eagles, Learning to fly!! One of the Eagles was holding a stick in its hand, maybe reluctant to leave the nest so taking a piece with him, and dropped it down to our area! Violet was DELIGHTED thinking that it was a present just for her, other kids spouted off theories about why the bird did that, and Seamus weaved a story about an eagle dropping down a present for him on his boat.
It was at that time that the Eagle nest in our area was created. This nest has brought EVERY kiddo over to it at one time or another to play. Dax has tirelessly filled the baby eagles' water dishes, Paisley, Lucy, Odin, and Violet have made it soft and beautiful inside, and heaps of kids have pretended to be eagles leaving the nest so that Reanne can come and bring them back (her cardio for the season).
Winter Solstice Lanterns
Land Art Love Letter
Reminder! Program will be close on
11/11 - Veterans Day
11/29 - Friday after Thanksgiving
November 4th Community Members:
Member of the Audubon Society on Bainbridge Island, Diane loves to spend her days pointing out birds and explaining their behaviors. Among her peers, she is PREFERS to hang out with the little ones and she thrives in our environment. Since this coming to you late, I will say she came November 4th and the kids LOVED her. She was patient, kind, and so knowledgeable...and the kids can sense an expert for sure. She cannot wait to come join us again after the winter thaws out in Spring.
Our visitor from the Downtown Bremerton Library is coming to read books to our kiddos on our theme of Salmon for the week and we cannot wait to have her visit on November 15th.
For those of you who are undecided, I would like to extend the invitation again.
When: Novemebr 13th 9am to 12pm
Where: Jarstad Park , Bremerton WA (although more in Ghosrt)
Why: To watch the Salmon run!! (we hope, be thinking rain!)
November 29th :
We invite you all to OPT outside with us and share your pictures in our photo album