Saturday, November 20, 2010

Autumnal Bliss

Autumnal wonders never cease to amaze.

The colors, the crisp air, leaf piles, changes taking place that are seen and unseen, known and unknown.

I enjoy the anticipation of coming home to sit with a hot mug of mulled cider, warm pajamas, a comforting fire.

This is a time to slow down because nature demands we stop and pay attention.

Our students feel this as well.  On Monday we ventured out for a leaf walk to Madison Square Park. The task was to collect leaves of different shapes, sizes and colors.  It is wonderful that such a simple task can bring such happiness and excitement.

Especially pleasing was a particular assortment of leaves that had collected in one area just asking to be thrown in the air to gleeful giggles.  Leaves found their way into hoods, coats and Lauren's hair faster than a blink.

By the time we left, their little Ziploc bags were full of specimens to sort, graph and examine.

We have read some spectacular books to build knowledge about trees, leaves and the fall season (check out Leaves! Leaves! Leaves! by Nancy Elizabeth Wallace for its information
and Leaf Man by Lois Ehlert  for its creativity).

Our classroom is beginning to look a lot like autumn - wreaths made of leaves decorate the walls and clementines covered with cloves hang from ribbons on our twinkle light wrapped palm tree.  It is a feast for the senses.

Who could ask for anything more?


Angella Lister said...

Beautiful. This brings back memories of my own children, more than you can imagine.

Pauline said...

The fact that it doesn't take much to make children happy makes me wish I was still a child. I hop and skip in the leaves but only when no one is looking...

It's wonderful, the things you introduce your classes to, showing them how big and messy and wonderful life is!

lettuce said...

its gorgeous isn't it? I wasn't sure I felt ready for autumn, but its seduced me as usual.

the picture you paint of your classroom is lovely

Gary said...

Angella - One of the wonderful things about teaching elementary school is that I have the opportunity to relive some of these childhood memories again and again and experience this joy vicariously through the children. I'm glad you were taken back as well.

Pauline - I am pulled by the more adult version of jumping through leaf piles...when I see them piled up along the road I want to drive my little VW right through them. So far I have resisted the temptation but one of these days (when I am sure the leaf pile is free of merry makers) I am going to do it. Perhaps with the top down.

Letty - Color me seduced as well. Your comment made me realize that it has been a while since I posted classroom pics. xo

Barbara said...

It's interesting how you can build a whole unit out of something as simple as a leaf! I find myself looking at everything as a potential math project because tomorrow I begin tutoring young Margalen in math after her piano lesson. I'm sure we could practice addition with leaves or acorns.


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