Palo Alto Tender Tracks Wed., Nov.27, 2012

Full Moon
Huddart Park
Day 23

Everyone was here accept our new member, he is to come on Thursday .  The children were completely ready and raring to go with the new schedule. They just jumped on the bus and wanted to get buckled up straight away.  I had laid out on the seats stuffed animals and childrens nature field guides.  I was so surprised, they did not request anything else, or anything different.  A couple did not want the books that they had but they just jumped right in with such ease.  There were several children with runny noses or coughs so I shared with them the things that we never want to share: our coughs ( cough into your elbow), our runny noses and Jill shared how we do not want to share our spoons and such unless, as Miu said, we wash them first.  We all had a good laugh about this and for the rest of the day they ALL were wonderful about cleaning their noses or asking for help and coughing into their elbows.  It was wonderful!
We began the day by noticing the sky and the clouds and beginning to learn to read the sky world.  All day we kept looking at the different clouds so that if it did rain the next day, like the Weather men have been saying, we would begin to learn to know what clouds will tell us this.    When we finally got to Huddart park we had the best ever circle time.  It was easy, comfortable and they all were present.  We sang some new songs not only for this season but we needed them for the story that I told.  When I finally told the story each time it was time for the new song they hummed or tried to sing along.  This was DELIGHTFUL!
Afterwards we all went to the sand pit/ volleyball court, and began looking for tracks.   They were incredible how they got into this. Well, all but Aoife, and Giselle who joyfully played, rolled, laughed all over the sand pit.  The rest were very involved in all the different tracks we found and then they created a game where they pretended they were diffferent animals and Jill and I had to track them and find them.  This was so fun because they made lots of amazing tracks to try and figure out who and what they were.
Games morphed into this and that, as usual. Jill and I kept seeing things left over from other nature classes and there was the beginnings of a little Fairy type house.  The story today had some Gnomes in it so I began making a Gnomey house.  Emme, Miu,  Kaden, in and out ,and Paul came in to help.
Giselle and Aoife started to eat and others went in and out of that.  But they all were filled with SUCH EASE!  They got right into playing in and on the sand.   I told them that we were going to make brooms so finally, I went in to the woods with Miu, Kaden, Evan, Paul and Alice to find our sticks and what to use for the broom part.  We were in luck as we found a great, looooonnnnnngggg branch with lot’s of Redwood Tree leaves on it for our brooms.  They had to find their sticks of varying sizes for these. Some wanted Mice brooms, others Gnome brooms, others for their family and others big or small.  Jill and I made them all as they played and played.   This time their game was that “Dr. Evan” had broken his arm. He was Dad, and he lay on top of the picnic table . Giselle was a very fine nurse I must say as she tended to him with such care!   I went and found the plants, Plaintain for cuts and stings and Dandelion for healthy Liver.  Most of them actually ate some of the leaves and then some of us went hunting for more.
During the day the girls were with Jill a lot or just on their own.  They got VERY involved with getting water from the water faucet and using it for their sand creations.   When we had about 30 to 45 minutes left we could have either gone on a short adventure orrrr…… I brought out a lot of oyster shells for digging and they just went for them.  In all my years of doing this work I have not yet seen a group of children have so much ease throughout the entire day and with out a word, just take those shells and begin digging!  Each one in their own way dug into the sand and finally Evan got burried and then Kaden wanted to.
When we were cleaning up Kaden and Evan wanted to sweep the inside of the bus with their new brooms and Jill told me how much the girls were using their brooms throughout the day in their games.  I saw Alice sweeping the “hospital” quite a bit too.
Miu insisited on wrapping her own brooms and was fully enjoying that and Aoife was having so much fun with Giselle in the sand and her bare feet ALL DAY.  It got quite cold at times and I made sure that coats were put on during these cold moments.
We looked at the big Black birds that flew over head throughout the day and learned ways to figure out if they were Crows or Ravens.  Do YOU know how to tell the difference?
The ride home was sweet as Jill taught them a new song and read to them a grand story.

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