Friday, March 16, 2012

Windy Days

Last week, when we made our train conductor hats, some of the children wore them outside. The day was fairly windy and the hats quickly blew off of their little heads. Occasionally, when a child stooped to pick up a hat, it would blow away again before she could get her hands on it. Of course chasing hats across the playground is great fun so we started looking for other things that the wind would blow. We noticed that it was blowing the hair on our heads but everything else in the playground was too heavy for this wind. We decided to bring the scarves from the dress up area outside to see if they would blow, and they did!

At first we ran around the playground holding the scarves, but then we tried tying them to the fence. Every time a gust of wind blew the scarves into the air, the children screamed and cheered. 
We tried tying the scarves all the way at the top of the fence. When the wind blew, the scarves would blow up into the air and the children would jump and try to catch them. When there was no wind the scarves would lie flat and still and we wondered where the wind had gone. 
Because everyone was so interested in the wind, I brought a fan to school the next day and we made wind in the classroom. We experimented with different toys to see which ones the wind would blow. 
It did not blow the train or the play food. 
But it did blow streamers, blankets, mittens, and paper. 
Later we took the streamers outside. At first there was no wind. 
 But we waited and soon the streamers were blowing!
 This is a wonderful example of how emergent curriculum works. We had actually been planning to learn about cars this week, but when the children showed interest in the wind, we seized the moment and changed our plans.

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