This year the children will be participating in weekly Squirrel School sessions. In each session the children will be developing their characteristics of effective learning; Playing and exploring, Active learning, Creating and thinking critically
The children will work in groups alongside an adult each session. They will work with their group for three weeks, developing their ideas each week and sharing their mini projects with the whole class in the fourth week.
The artists will work alongside our Atelierista, Jo, who will guide the children to develop their artistic expression and techniques.
The Story Tellers:
The children will work alongside Amy, developing a community of listening and sharing ideas.
The children will work alongside their Class teacher, exploring the outside world and developing their tool skills, bush craft, and scientific exploration.
The explorers have been developing their ability to use tools safely and effectively. They have been whittling sticks to remove the bark "it has gone white in the middle when I peeled it," "this bit all squishy. Because there are water in there. I can see the bubbles there." We are also using a hack saw to cut them to size, which the children found fascinating "what's the white dust?". We have discussed what we might need to create a fire, the children decided that they will need sticks and leaves, but they were wet at Squirrel School "they need to be dry." Therefore, the children got a bag and collected some leaves and sticks to dry out at school. In addition, the children have been practising using the flints to create a fire as in the coming weeks they will be creating their own camp fire to cook food.
The children shared the story 'The Leaf Man'. They explored the leaves to find out how they could be used to create art. "Wave them like your hand, whoosh whoosh like the wind. Leaf man whooshed away." The following weeks the children returned to Squirrel School, drawing on inspiration from Andy Goldsworthy, they set about creating their own art using the fallen Autumn leaves. "Circle the inside, I looked very careful," "yellow in the spot." Some children chose to use the leaves as a tool for mark making and others carefully placed the leaves to form their own pictures.
The story tellers:
The story tellers decided upon their project when at Squirrel School in the wind and rain. They were fascinated in the weather and how it was effecting the environment around them, they decided to discuss the different types of weather that we might experience in different seasons. From this, the children wanted to create a rain dance, prominently focusing on the extreme weather from that first session. The children then incorporated different musical instruments into their dance, to represent the different types of weather.
Whole class sharing week:
The whole class came together in our fourth week to share the work that they have been doing in their groups with the rest of the class. The Explorers used their skills they had practised and created a fire to cook the food. The Story Tellers went first and performed their rain dance to the rest of the children. The Artists then went on to share their art project using natural materials such as the fallen Autumn leaves and sticks. The Explorers prepared and shared a meal of their choice, half of a banana with chocolate in with a cup of hot chocolate. The children were fascinated when unwrapping their foil to reveal the banana, which had turned a different colour and the melted chocolate in the middle.
Overall School: 95.4% - Every day counts!