Thursday, April 10, 2014

Not just caterpillars and butterflies...we are all "morphing"

A fuzzy-wuzzy caterpillar crawled on a leaf, spun a cocoon and went to sleep. Fuzzy-wuzzy caterpillar woke up by and by, and said, "I have wings. Now I'm a butterfly."
 
 
It is that time of year when we make our hall caterpillar. First each child scrunched up sheets of newspaper and stuffed their plastic bags. I tied them off.  Then, I stood the children in a row (sometimes I pair them up) and placed the bags on the floor at their feet. I do not give any direction. The first children to touch their bags are usually born leaders. Those are the kids who are most inquisitive, confident, and will be risk takers in life. Not afraid to take a chance. 
 
Then, the fun began. They tossed the bags to each other, up in the air and they kicked them. Lots of energy expended and lots of fun using their large muscles. Next we identified shapes and placed them on our bags with tape. I hooked our caterpillar together and we moved it to the hall. I encouraged parents to stop and talk about it with their children.
 
I also posted photos of us seated as a group, legs wrapped around one another as we scooted as one long caterpillar. It takes cooperation to move as one unit. 
 
 I presented an assortment of stuffed caterpillars, and we discussed likenesses, differences, sizes. I have two giant caterpillars that the children sit on. We hold the antennae and have caterpillar races.
You should hear the cheering and laughter. 

Our weather was sunny and warm enough to go outdoors and have butterfly races.
 
 
Our unit would not be complete without decorating our own smaller, paper butterflies. Sometimes
we color them with markers, sometimes colored glue, but this year we used eye droppers and colored water and made color blends. First we mixed primary colors in a water filled ice cube tray. The little scientists oohed and ahhed at their color combinations and discoveries that mixing blue and yellow really does make green. Then they made every color hue you can imagine. I hope my students take a love of learning with them into kindergarten and beyond.



 

11 comments:

Sioux said...

Linda--You are the maker of memories...fond memories...for dozens of kids every year.

The lessons they learn--about play and about knowledge--will stay with them for a lifetime.

River said...

You are the most FUN teacher I've ever known about.
Those children are so lucky to have you.

Weekend-Windup said...

Wonderful caterpillar! Happy to see the kids enjoying the sunshine!

Karen Lange said...

What a fun unit! And such a fun age. Thanks for sharing your creative adventures with us. :)

Daisy said...

Those kids will remember you and your class forever. What a fun unit! If you haven't already done it, maybe you should consider writing a book of ideas for preschool teachers to use in their classrooms!

Bookie said...

Wgat a great caterpillar! These kids had fun and now you have them ready to "fly" into kindergarten too!

Donna Volkenannt said...

What a fun way to engage your students. It's a lesson they're certain to remember.

Lisa Claro said...

Great post. The kids aren't the only ones smiling. Thanks, Linda. :)

Val said...

Your class is their crysalis. A safe haven in which to develop their true colors.

Lynn said...

I've said it many times, wish I had you as a teacher!

Tammy said...

With that kind of inspiration, they are bound to use a little bit of those lessons for the rest of their lives.