Sunday, October 7, 2012

Classroom Events in Pictures

We have been using observation as a prompt for writing. This means we have been observing these plants and writing down what we notice. We have done this on several occasions and each time we observe the plant our noticings become and more sophisticated. For instance, during the last observation, students noticed that plant looked like concentric circles (a term we learned in math) and that the plant seemed to grow from the middle outward. This made us believe the largest and most outward part of the plant is the oldest. This also made us believe the smallest and middle part of the plant was the youngest.
Resurrection Plants in windowsill

Several weeks ago a couple of caterpillars were given to our class by Mr. O'Keefe's class. We have been watching the caterpillars form into a chrysalis. This one turned into a chrysalis about a week ago so we assume we may be seeing a butterfly pretty soon.

Chrysalis in net

This caterpillar escaped from the net above. We couldn't find it until someone turned our worm viewer around and discovered the caterpillar must have climbed the styrofoam and formed it's chrysalis here. We all noticed that while the above chrysalis was green, this one was brown.

Chrysalis on worm viewer

Several weeks ago I brought in some mosquito larvae I found in the backyard. I placed them in this mosquito larvae viewer and we have been watching the larvae turn from creepy looking things floating in the water to mosquito. I think everyone was just as fascinated with the viewer which have led to several discussion on old fly catchers. You never know what direction a discussion will take us and that is the beauty of our talks.

Mosquito habitat

Last year my MAT introduced me to this book called On Meadowview Street by Henry Cole. This book is about a girl who noticed a flower growing in her yard, decided to rope of an area around the flower, then noticed that as she let the area remained untouched and not mowed, animal life began to move into the protected area.
On Meadowview Street by Henry Cole

Over the last year, I have tried to protect this area outside our classroom in hope of letting the grass grow back and observing insect life coming back to this area. It hasn't been easy since the yard people continually ignore the signs I put up. So far it has been un-mowed for a week and have introduced our first big log in the hope we can observe the log decay and insect life use it for shelter. This is a long term observation we will observe and write about on a monthly basis.

Large log outside classroom

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