Ah, the joys of being on the farm…

By Mrs. Sacha

Early Childhood activities:

The days spent at Outdoor School were so fruitful. Each child came to school eager and ready to explore nature. They gathered together each morning with their teachers and made delicious apple sauce for snack as the smell of the morning fire encircled around the farm. The class picked ripe, juicy pears, apples and plums.

The sounds of older siblings and friends in the grades classes echoed around the farm as they recited their verses and sang songs that filled the warm summer air. The children went to say hello to dear grades friends and teachers and to see what each grade was learning.

With the earth below their feet, they ventured into the meadow to live into their daily circle and curriculum time. The meadow was filled with magical moments picking blackberries, discovering a deep, deep hole and wondering who lived down there. The ancient evergreen stretched out its branches to let children climb upon it. They ran, sang and played with newly found friends.

The children painted together, played games and each child received a golden ball of yarn to play with or finger knit. Life is golden on the farm in the golden summer sunshine.

Before eating snack each day, the Early Childhood children share what they are thankful for.  Every day many children say, “I am so thankful for the farm!” It’s a remarkable thing that your children get to go to a school with a farm! Everyone had so much fun and they look forward to venturing to the farm every month!

What lucky children you have – and what great parents who send them to Swallowtail School!

Honey Bee: Makes you wish you were a child again

{ Thank you Ms. Beth & Ms. Erica }

A Sunny Autumn Day in the Honey Bee Kindergarten:

Our fall circle is big and requires much movement. So much so that there are many giggly “Phew’s” as we close our circle with a restful quiet song. With a tap on their sweet wee heads they departed from the circle, donned their aprons, and seated themselves silently at the tables for painting. When everyone was present, the chairs were scooted away as our painting song began, and there they stood…twinkling eyes and ready hands for our painting adventure. All was quiet save for the soft humming as they worked, and then very slowly, one at a time, little hands were raised. Their paintings glowed with crimson sunsets, rosy apples, pink blossoms and berries, a daddy…and their faces glowed with huge, beaming smiles! They put their painting boards away, pushed in their chairs, and went right to the circle and began to fold and sort the laundry.

Some of our oldest friends divvied out tasks (sorting napkins by color, washing day rags, small towels, big towels…) and they proceeded without any words needed from their teachers. A few friends joined Ms. Erica in cleaning up from painting and washed the paint jars. The remainder finished the laundry, put it away, and slowly woke up the toys in our classroom. As a handful of friends took turns helping Ms. Beth with the ironing, houses went up, a puzzle came out, a castle was built, babies were born, and the table was set for snack. One friend asked for a rag to wash some toys, imaginations were alive and everyone was happy and engaged, and the “hummm” was beautiful. When the “little dusty gnome” came to tell us it was time to tidy up our home, houses and castles came down, babies were tucked in bed, and the puzzle went away (after every single friend had seen it).

Kindergarten

A peek into the hive!

As each friend finished their work, they made their way one by one to the circle for our song before snack. Another tap on their wee heads sent them to wash their hands and find their seat at the table for snack. The candles were lit, the blessing was said, and the rice disappeared! As they were dismissed from the table, they each scraped and washed their dishes, set out their lunches, put on their outdoor clothes and shoes, then waited on a toadstool to go outside.

The children were so excited to be visited by Father Sun, that they didn’t even wait for all of the big kids to clear the play yard! They basked in the sun, climbed trees, played in a MOST amazing sand fort, tended to the snail habitat (the children love their snails! One was even smuggled in to story in a sock today), and ran, ran and ran. And galloped. When it was time, everybody was quiet and ready to come in for story.

The candle was lit, the story told, and they all rested quietly, spread out like rays of the sunshine as they listened to the quiet bells. All was so very quiet (a couple had even dozed off). Then they were gently roused and they carefully folded their resting mats, neatly placing them on Grandmother’s rocking chair, washed their hands, and went to the tables for lunch. Again a blessing was said, lunches devoured, and a goodbye song was sung! Then they all packed up, and went to take on the rest of their day!

Now close your eyes and picture their sweet silly faces and bright smiles. Hear their little conversations, their giggles, “I love you’s,” and even tiny disagreements that fill our space with life. And feel their little hands entwining their fingers in yours, their sweet kisses and hugs, and catch you off-guard tickles! What a blessing to share these most precious moments with your children each day. There aren’t words to describe the depths to which they fill our hearts. A blessing, truly, and so much more. Thank you, thank you, thank you!