Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Arbor Day

For 35 years our county has given all of its kindergartners a tree.  Today they each received a Black Hills Spruce Tree, which is the South Dakota state tree.  The children also were taught how to care for the tree, where to plant it and how it will grow to be a large tree.  There are directions in your child's book bag.  If you don't have time to plant it for awhile, you may store it in your refrigerator.  If you don't have a place to plant it, consider taking it to grandparents or give it away.  Some kids have their photo taken by their tree each year, documenting how each has grown. Each kindergarten teacher in the county received a Pasque Flower, which is our state flower!  I was very happy to receive that beautiful flower!

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Mud Balls and Kindergartners - Making a Difference for Pheasant Chicks"

One of our seniors in high school did his senior project in conjunction with Pheasants Forever.  His project was about enhancing habitat for Ring-necked Pheasants by making mud balls with seeds, a.k.a. seed bombs.  

He recruited these bird-y kindergartners to help him make the mud balls.  Oh my!  Did they ever love this project!  It was a good thing we did this outdoors!  

After the mud dried, he had the kindergartners and I meet him at a field just outside of town.  He had the kindergartners throw the mud balls and when they hit the ground, they broke apart dispersing the seeds.  After the spring rains the seeds will hopefully grow into native plants that will be nutritious food for  Ring-necked Pheasant chicks and it will also provide cover for them.  Not only will it helps pheasants, but other grassland birds as well.  How wonderful it was for the kindergartners to be a part of something like this.  Helping birds is a way for young children to make a difference in their natural world and feel empathy towards other creatures!

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

March Journal Entries

Spring Concert

Here are the kids looking pretty for their spring concert!

Bird Club

On most Fridays I am fortunate to have another class come join us for the Chickadee Bird Club.  I usually have the students in front of the Promethean board and we review birds and I usually show them what birds are in the area by looking at my Flickr site as well.  Then we watch a short video or two about birds.  

Sometimes we have bird centers where groups of kids move from one table to another to do bird activities.  In this way the students can review what they learned in kindergarten and this may help them remember what they learned about birds. 

These students are asking bird riddles.

These girls are also guessing each others bird riddles.

The older kids are great mentors to the younger students.
This group is playing Bird Memory.
Bird Bingo is a favorite for all!
These kids are drawing bird pictures.
The kids love to come to the year-round bird center!


Birdman, the filmmaker, was here to get some photos of the kids.  He has been working on a documentary about the K-4 kids for five years.  It is a huge project and many things will have to come together for this film to be completed. Now it is time  for him to talk to prospective donors and hope that someone will finance the show that the kids will be in for PBS.  Let's keep our fingers crossed.

Bird Photographer and Kindergartner

This kindergarten girl really surprised me one day when she brought her toy camera in and showed me bird photos and video that she took!  She had photos of Sandhill Cranes, American Robins, Wild Turkeys and more.  How cool is that?

Parachute Fun!

The kids do many fun things in P.E. and one of their favorites is playing with the parachute.  It is a great way to learn about teamwork!

Some March Journal Pages

"I like helping animals."

"I am hauling pigs."
"Maybe Lilah, Blythe and I will find a leprechaun."

Lego Showcase Night

Lego Showcase Night was a hit and I really enjoyed seeing all of the great creations by the kids!