November’s Sprouts Nature Notes

November has been a month of big temperature swings as we have seen days starting in the thirties and peaking in the upper sixties. We have all been getting a lot of practice removing or adding layers as the temperature changes. This gives us a chance to practice our own flexibility and adaptability as the conditions of our environment change. This gives us an opportunity to practice listing to our body’s signals and using fine motor skills.

As the deciduous plants of the first finished the shedding of their leaves, the Sprouts noticed colors like pink, purple, yellow, brown, and a vivid red from leaves and rose hips. They also began to notice the evergreens more easily as they contrasted with the fall autumnal colors around them. Our conversations about deciduous and evergreen plants highlighted how challenges in our environment can often be overcome by multiple means.

The Sprouts have been finding more diverse ways to use the loose parts of the forest. Fairy houses and other fairy tools have been popular building projects this month, giving the students both a chance to engage in imaginative play as well as the engineering practices cycle of designing, building, testing, and revising.

This November has been quite dry with the exception of a few wet days. The Sprouts have noticed that the creek doesn’t have much flow, but it does have a lot of leaves. The leaves in the creek provide habitat for the creatures spotted this month including salamanders, crawdads, and aquatic larvae. On the warmer days, some of the Sprouts engaged with the mechanics of color combinations by mixing red clay with dark mud, and also by shaving down chalk and mixing the different colored powders.

My favorite parts of the month were the moments when a gust of wind would send hundreds of leaves down at once in a leaf-fall and seeing the reaction of the students and teachers alike. Seeing everyone stop what they are doing and look up in awe reminds me of the beauty and peace we can find when we are immersed in nature.

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