Monday, December 7, 2009

Community V: Natural Setting

December 3, 2009

For our final community session, we met at Eaton Canyon.

We spent a few minutes talking about where our community IS. Are there mountains, or is it flat? Is it wet or is it dry? Is it near the ocean or not? What kind of animals live here? Do we have zebras or polar bears? Coyotes? Mountain lions? What kinds of plants? Why are these plants and animals here and not somewhere else? Why aren't those other animals here?

Then Heather asked the kids to gather small things they found on their walk that we can use in two weeks for our community "found art" collage:

A quick reminder to avoid "leaves of three" and rattling sounds:

And then we were off!

We ended our time with a few minutes in the nature center, where the kids got to hear the sound of a *real* rattle snake! Now we know the sound to avoid!

Remember that December 10 is a no-session day because of the girls' dress rehearsal for The Nutcracker. We'll see you all next on December 17 at Heather's house for the Community Art project.

Following the art project, we'll be on holiday break. We'll reconvene on January 7 at Spencer's house where we'll start learning about music and making our own instruments. Can't wait!

Community IV: Earthquakes and Volcanoes

November 19, 2009:

Today we were back at Lynn, Sarah and Fiona's house to learn about earthquakes and volcanoes! After watching some videos of lava flows and learning what to do during an earthquake, we went outside and *started one!!*

Lets build a city with lots of skyscrapers!


(Actually, we did talk about how tall buildings here are on special foundations that keep them from falling over in earthquakes, but there'll still be a big mess to clean up inside after it's over!)

Then we made volcanoes oozing with lava:

Finally, we played Race The Lava! Sounds scary! Run, kids!

Try to get away from this scary, er, lady dribbling a ball!

Ever the thrill-seekers, the girls have to run *toward* the lava.

Then the girls performed their scene from their upcoming Nutcracker performance:

Hope we'll get to see it in person!

Happy week, everyone! Don't forget to duck and cover!

Community III: Neighborhood Treasure Hunt!

November 12, 2009:

Today we started at Caiden's house, where Lynn brought us a message from her friend, Old Blackbeard. Check back for Blackbeard's wonderful prose - I can't begin to recreate it, so until I have it for you, I'll just give you the blow-by-blow of what we did:

In perfect pirate dialect, Lynn read Blackbeard's message, which told everyone to start off by finding direction on his pirate ship. Now where can that be?

Ah ha! And on it was a cache of compasses for everyone to navigate their way through the neighborhood!

Our next clue was to walk 30 paces until we saw the Bell...

Where's the bell? A doorbell?

Ah ha! And then we were to go west until we saw monkeys swinging in a jungle.

Can't get any jungle-y-er than the park (monkeys not shown) (actually, all these kids were born in the year of the monkey, how about that? So ignore the last comment.)!

Waiting for them at the park was a treasure of juice treats!

The next clue led them to...

Spencer's house!

Where they got bags of pencils and pirate stickers and some piratey tattoos. Arr!

Then it was on to the final treasure:

West again to the street named after an island:

To find the treasure hidden underneath a SNAKE!

Whew, not a real snake!

Thanks, Lynn, it was wonderfully done!

Community II: Country Maps and the Globe

November 5, 2009:

Back to Lynn's house, where the kids talked about states and countries they've visited or have family in. Caiden has been to Norway to visit his grandma, and Lily goes to see her grandparents in Vermont and New York.

Then everyone assembled puzzles of the US and looked at a globe, and the day closed with another round of compass tag.

Jack was out sick that day, so I didn't go and don't have pictures, but I hear a good time was had by all!

Community I: Maps and Compasses

October 29, 2009

For this lesson (and the next several), we met at Lynn's house, where the kids talked about the kinds of things you find in a community: stores, schools, doctors, libraries, parks, and lots of people. Lynn then talked about maps and how one orients oneself relative to a map. She showed everyone the cool trick of how to make your own compass:

Rub a pin on a magnet

And float it on a cork - easy!

Then everyone got to make their own maps.


Fiona's (I think?):


Spencer's - he drew a map of Angel stadium:


Sarah's (yes, Lynn?):

We finished up the game with a round of compass tag. Whee!