Going to the Garden
Well, thank you Mother Goose Time for yet another great idea that I would not have come up with on my own had it not been for the inspiration I receive every day from this curriculum.
We are learning all about gardening for the month of May and I saw that our library gives free passes to a beautiful garden - The Old Westbury Garden! Now, I have noticed this pass before but always skipped thinking that my 2 young kids would find nothing to do there. When we went, I was shocked to see all of the fun they had. I also noticed that because my kids are under 6, the cost for the day is only $10! This may just become our new summer hang out!
No bouncers. No loud activities. No toys. Just nature. We stayed for about 2 hours, had lunch and walked around. The grounds are very large and, at times, just field. We would stop at each large field of beautiful grass and I would sit back and just allow them some time to indulge in dramatic play without any interference from me. No time limits. No rules (unless safety concerns). No interaction from me. Just 2 sisters and their imaginations.
My camera battery died halfway through the trip, but here's some of the beginning.
Ring Around The Rosie
Every morning in our circle time, we play the circle time theme and then we sing a song from our teacher guide. After circle time, we will usually have a dance party where we put on the theme of the months CD and just dance away. The girls normally end up with a ring around the rosie dance move and here we have it. I'm telling you, it's because of our Mother Goose Time routine that their bond is so strong these days.
When we are home, I often find the girls either playing separately, fighting when playing together or making pretend YouTube toy videos separately. Here at the garden, they played together. They pretended they were planting flowers like farmers and at one point they pretended they were in a castle and had to find their way to the prince in the enchanted garden.
More Singing Time
Sonia led Daniella in some songs, pretending to be Mommy, at school. She sang songs from our circle time, she made some up and she tried to mimic some of the dance moves from Dance 'n Beats.
This imaginative play was inspired by last months Shipwreck lesson. When we were talking about how sometimes there are treasures in shipwrecks, Sonia immediately connecting pirates, buried treasure and a map. So, when the gardens gave us a map to help us find our way, the girls took it from me and led the way.
I wish I may, I wish I might
Though, the actual flower part of the trip came after my camera had died, the girls managed to find "wishing flowers". They both made their wishes, blew on the flowers and we watched them blow away to the wish maker's land. I hope all of their wishes come true, mine already have!
A Moment to Meditate
After they had played for awhile, I could see they were a little tired, so we stopped, sat down and took a moment to meditate. We thanked Mother Nature for her beauty. We thanked God for each other. We sat in silence to meditate and take in all we were blessed with.
When the girls were done, I wanted to continue my own meditation and they found a bench and allowed me some much need momma meditation. When I opened my eyes, I turned around and saw this! Wow, life does not get any better!
Dramatic play is, in my opinion, one of the most important ways a child can learn at any age.
Tell me, when have you sit back and allowed your child to lead the play activity. No corrections, no input, just let their imaginations run wild? What experience did you have?