Junior Kindergarten classes recently wrapped up plant and insect units by sharing projects displaying what they had learned. Classed began their studies by creating a word web about the garden. Teachers followed their individual class interests from there. For example Mrs. Craver’s class was very interested in questions related to garden helpers, so that became their chosen topic.
After documenting what they knew or wanted to know about garden helpers, they began the research phase. The children learned about earthworms and how they help plants grow. Then they moved on to pollinators such as bees and butterflies. Bats were a great transition to animals that may eat the bugs in a garden, like spiders and praying mantises.
Over the course of the project, Upper School science teacher Mrs. Peck visited as a guest expert on pollination. Mrs. Craver’s class observed and released ladybugs into their garden and recently discovered that their praying mantis pod had hatched. Some stayed in the Shorecrest junior kindergarten gardens, and the rest were delivered on a field trip to the Sustainable Family Farm to release into their garden. Thank you to our amazing guides there, Shorecrest parent Erick Smith and alumnus Elliott Darrow '16. (View photos from the Farm field trips here.)
Parents were invited to view final projects. Dr. Sherri Danyali, Director of the Experiential School, also enjoyed her time viewing the projects. “What a beautiful morning! I observed capable and confident children sharing projects and waiting to share, parents beaming with pride and listening, and excellent educators interacting with students and families. The children were so poised and proud sharing their thoughts, work, and plans! It was evident how engaged they were in the process of their learning and also the time and conversations that went into the entire project leading up to sharing today.”