Tot School: Spring
Spring! Can you feel it? The warmth of the sun kissing your skin. Can you hear it? Birdsong in the branches outside your window. Can you see it? Slowly the greenery is waking from the earth after their long winter slumber. We definitely can feel it here; the rain outside a promise for greener things to come. We celebrated the arrival of spring with a spring themed week & it might be tied with Outer Space for Reagan's favorite tot school subject.
Eager for the new growth, we thought bringing a nice pile of spring books would lure the flowers out from the ground. It just might have worked seeing as our magnolia tree is all abloom & the daffodils are thiiiiiiis close to popping open.
- Fletcher & the Springtime Blossoms by Julia Rawlinson. Fletcher the fox is so excited for spring, but what happens when he sees snow in the meadow?
- When Spring Comes by Kevin Henkes. A nice picture book about the changes that happen during the transition from winter to spring.
- Little Blue Truck's Springtime by Alice Schertle. One of Reagan's favorite series, aside from Duck & Goose, Little Blue Truck wants to say "Yoo-Hoo!" to all of spring's baby animals.
- Plant the Tiny Seed by Christie Matheson. By tapping, clapping, & waving, your child can make a tiny seed grow into a beautiful flower! A simple introduction on how plants grow & release seeds for new growth.
- The Tiny Seed by Eric Carle. A tiny seed has the ability to become something great, as long as it takes it time to grow.
- Meet Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter. Is there a series more quintessential of spring than Peter Rabbit? We have 4 beautiful pop up books of the Tales of Peter Rabbit. I think they were P's when he was a boy & it's so sweet to see them being passed down to his son, & hopefully onto Reagan's future babes.
- When the Root Children Wake Up by Audrey Wood. "Root Children sleep deep under the ground. And while you dream the world will turn around. Then once again Young Robin will sing, "Old Winter has passed. Wake up, it is Spring." On my quest to find Sibylle von Offers "The Story of the Root Children", we came across this version at the library. & what a beautiful story it is, about Mother Earth awakening the Root Children when spring arrives to join a masquerade until Winter comes around again.
While waiting for our little Root Children to pop up, spring is the time to learn about all those cute baby animals! Fiddlestick Kids has the most beautiful (& educational) illustrations. We printed out this sweet little scenery so Reagan could build his burrow, while learning about kits & hares.
We decided to do a story project inspired by The Tiny Seed & plant our own in a Mason jar so we could watch the seed burst & roots grow. What you'll need for this is:
- a Mason jar
- paper towels
- seeds (we used a watermelon & a pumpkin. Pumpkin seeds sprout pretty fast)
I took a bunch of paper towel & wet it (though not soaking) & had Reagan stuff it into the Mason jar until it was about 3/4 full. Then we took one seed each of a watermelon & a pumpkin & placed them on opposite sides of the jar. Be sure to get the seed up against the glass so you can watch it sprout. The paper towel should hold it in place. Then we screwed the lid on & set it in a brightly lit window. Reagan was so excited every day to see the changes that were happening to the seeds he planted. It's a wonderful activity to get kids introduced to gardening!
|Look at the root system on this pumpkin!|
I also printed out this informative & fun Plant Life Cycle chart from Mama's Happy Hive. Reagan would take his sprouted seeds & compare where they were on the life cycle chart. We also used her Robin Life Cycle spin chart to learn about birds, which leads us to our next craft of creating baby bird nests.
I used brown craft paper to cut a half circle for the 'nest' & cut a variety of brown yarn for Reagan to decorate his bird's nest. Then I just cut some circles for the bird bodies & little orange triangle beaks, letting Reagan glue some craft feathers on the birds. Let me tell you, Reagan & the cat both had a field day with the feathers. Someone walking into our house might have though we plucked birds for a living. So words of caution: if you own a cat, only take out the feathers you need, not the whole bag.
Aside from the disaster the cat left, we had a blast learning about the beautiful changes spring brings!
What did you & your littles do to celebrate the arrival of spring? Let me know in the comments & as always, follow my Tot School Pinterest board for more fun tot size activities.