Our Umbrella Project this year revolves around one word "relationships".
The heart of our collaboration and community is the relationships we have with each other.
Relationship is the primary connecting dimension of our system, howeve, understood not merely as a warm protective envelope but rather as a dynamic conjunction of forces and elements interacting toward a common purpose"
In Kindergarten, we rely on imagery to clarify vocabulary.
We compare a relationship as a piece of string that connects us together. Some decisions and actions stregthn the string and others cut the string.
As a class and a group of individauls, we are also in relationship with the nature, grounds and woods that surround our school.
The children play in the garden several times a day and walk the Forest connected to our campus on Fridays. They are intuned to the changing scenery, the paths and landmarkds and the affordances of the forest and the many opportunites provided by our outdoor space.
One day several students found a brach from one of the tall cedar trees laying on the ground in the garden.
L: We are trying to save this branch from dying.
E: We really want it to be ok.
L: Everyone pull your steering wheel.
P: We are trying to move this tree but we want to show it around to everyone and get good ideas.
E: We want them to help us and we are a community and we really want it to live.
D: We found it lying sideways like it was sleeping.
R: It is a branch not a tree. It is from our cedar trees.
J: My mom put a branch in some water and it lived.
This was offered as a solution to the problem. It would be a way to stop the branch from hurting and resurrect it.
Children have an affinity for animals and nature. They are
interested in observing and experiencing the biology of
living creatures but they have an innate sense of respect and
stewardship for the natural world around them.
Nature and creatures are often personified.
The children enter into relationship with them….caring for
the natural world, protecting from dangers and administering
care when damage occurs.
Zenobia Barlow, “Confluence of Streams”"Children are born with a sense of wonder and an affinity for Nature. Properly cultivated, these values can mature into ecological literacy, and eventually into sustainable patterns of living."