Saturday, 3 May 2014

Multi-age, May, and Moments in the Ditch

Yesterday I was out of our classroom to observe another multi-age (often refered to as multi-level) setting. It was inspiring and exciting to meet with others that are dedicated to the multi-age philosophy. At our meeting, I came across this list of beliefs that perfectly summerizes what we multi-age educators are all about.

Beliefs that Guide Multi-age Teaching
(as listed in Exploring the Multiage Classroom by Anne A. Bingham)
  • A belief in child-centered learning
  • A belief that active, concrete learning experiences are essential for young children
  • A belief in the importance of community
  • A belief that many kinds of learning are essential
  • A belief that human interaction, including conversation, supports rather than detracts from learning
  • A belief that continuity in the school setting is of value to young children
  • A belief that the traditional role of schools in society remains important
  • A belief that children’s progress should be assessed by looking at their own growth rather than by comparing them with others in their age group
  • A belief that the learner can be trusted
  • A belief that the teacher is also a learner
  • A belief that a wider-than-usual range of ages best supports these convictions
Here are our multi-age learning and teaching moments this week...

K-5 Capture the Chicken is better with socked-feet, apparently.
On Wednesday, our pre-school friends were here and we planted lettuce bowls for our upcoming Spring Tea. Mrs Jacobson and Mrs Perrella helped us get the tiny seeds scattered on the soil. Will they sprout in time for the tea?

Our class has been keeping a close eye on the south and west ditches near our school. This is us on Thursday, as we are discovering the water has disappeared. Now to investigate where it went...

South ditch- Matt stands with the metre stick.

West ditch- more to measure. Was 25 cm deep on Thursday.
On our walks to the west ditch, we have been checking on the buds we saw last week. This week, those same buds are now pussy willows! Aren't they beautiful? There are many trees that belong to the willow family near Argyle, and they all have catkins, or pussy willows. Catkins are actually flowers on the tree that will change during the spring. We will watch closely and share our findings with you. In the meantime, check out this valuable resource we are using in our spring discoveries. Lots of good stuff!

Pussy Willows- May 1st, 2014

I leave you today with two very special book recommendations from our classroom and a photo from my lakeside drive to school last week. I just missed the pelicans landing.

If You Find a Rock by Peggy Christian and Barbara Hirsch Lember

Not a Stick by Antoinette Portis
323- April 24th, 2014
It was lovely to share our learning and visit with all of you at last week's student showcase evening. Hopefully our winter dioramas and stories are bringing conversation and questions into your homes.
With Warmth,
Ms Hadfield