Tuesday, 1 October 2013

"our" Halloween

I am not the one for just doing things... you have probably all worked that out by now.
And while I think halloween is good fun - how is it meaningful for the children?

Ellen and I talked about it - and its fun because Ellen is not keen on celebrating traditions while I believe that they are an essential part of learning about where you live and about yourself...

BUT that is a whole discussion on its own...

We have decided not to celebrate halloween per se but to explore fear. In the same way that I explored LOVE with the children last Valentine.

So we will be asking them about what is fear, what colour is it, what are they afraid of eyc - and also talking about what we can do to meet these fears and feel stronger and braver - and by using the philosophical dialogues to fuel the activities that we do I am quite sure that we will be able to meet the needs and interests of the children...
So at this point in time I am unable to let you know HOW we will be "celebrating" halloween...

Today was our first "flying" philosophical dialogue with the children - and I will be posting more about that tomorrow... and we experimented with flight outdoors with kites and bubbles...

It was an interesting afternoon filled with discussions about flying (and that the airplane had legs - look at the image of the airplane above and you can totally see legs on that plane - I think this was my favourite quote today - as its not something that I have EVER thought about before, but the moment she said it (2yrs) I understood exactly what she meant as I too had marvelled at those two white lines) and also about  fairies - about building fairy doors with the blocks and what happens if you put something through the opening... and then at lunch we had been talking about animal languages and that maybe animals do speak to each other its just that we don't understand them. I spoke in English for a while they looked at me with a blank expression and I asked them if they understood - no, and they connected that the hisss of the snake could be words in snake language but just a hiss to us! Anyway later in the afternoon two of the girls became fairies - so I asked that if they were fairies maybe they spoke another langugae that I could not understand - or maybe humans could not hear and that's why it was so hard to find fairies.
The girls started to speak with no sound, using arms to help them communicate - and for a while one of them translated (that was hilarious - as her guess was as good as mine)... the big map book was out and the fairies showed me where fairies lived on the map


On the map there were small drawing of what looked liked a person running on the water - she kept pointing at them so I asked "can people run on water?" she shook her head violently. "Is that a sign for fairies" she nodded her head enthusiastically. Later in the afternoon she drew a picture of a fairy running on a blue strip... isnpiration from the map - it was  a fairy running on water - she got picked up before finishing the drawing and took it home before I got the chance to document it...

this is my new approach to documenting the children's art together with their words - a photograph of the artwork that can be placed in their portfolio, using picmonkey to create a frame and write the text on. Hopefully by the end of the year each child will have their own picture book with either small short stories or hopefully I can encourage a story that continues page for page...

The others at the table had more time so I could sit down and listen to the story of the drawing. This child turned 4 yesterday! She writes "It is a cave. And then it is a ghost that shall take with lots of money. And there is a monster in the cave. And it came out. And then, so came a cave with lots of money and then came mummy and is afraid. Then it happened that she became afraid and then came the daddy and then the story ends."

This was my last ten minutes of my day - and it felt like we were not going to have any problems combining a flight and a fear project simultaneously this month...
Exciting stuff.

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