Mountaingarten: Nov. 5th - 14th

This past week was a lot of fun and very wet. The children participated in making cards for the soldiers, feeding the animals, cutting up vegetables, making their own little rolls of bread, felt necklaces and water painting and adding a touch of glitter. The children continue to enjoy their time with Ki Nina where they are able to relax with yoga prior to having rest time.  

Throughout the week we are able to play in the forest with meadowgarten and take nature walks where the children hunt for turtles in the pond. Some children enjoyed splashing in the puddles, and would make sure that they were covered from head to toe in mud.

The children were told the story of a red robin whose broken wing prohibited him from flying South for the winter. The bird continued to go to different types of trees, and each tree turned him down. When the Red Robin came to an Evergreen tree, the Evergreen tree let the bird in and kept him safe and warm for the winter. On Thursday the children were able to reenact the story that had been told to them, with the help of Ki Fatima as the narrator. 

On Thursday the children enjoyed a warm chamomile tea with their snack.

A new poem has been introduced to the children that they will continue to work on throughout the next couple of weeks:

Have you seen the wind?

Neither  you nor I.

But when the leaves are trembling. 

The wind is passing by. 

Have you seen the wind?

Neither I not you.

But when the tree bark bows its head. 

The wind is passing through. 

For show and tell the students brought in a pamphlet of snakes, an invention, a student brought a snack he had made, and a dinosaur tooth. 

Reminders:

All students must have a rain suit or a rain jacket and rain pants. If the student is not prepared for the rainy outdoor weather the parents will be called for them to bring in a coat or to pick the child up.

Please ensure that your child has an extra pair of clothing. It is preferred that there are 2 extra pair of clothes because some children are muddy prior to school starting. If they do not have an extra pair of clothing, and are muddy/wet parents will be called to come bring them extra clothes or to be picked up. 

Children should have at lease two pairs of shoes. Each child should have a pair of rain boots. 

Kindergarten: September 3-7

Dear Mountain & Meadow parents,

We had our first assembly of the year this past Friday and it was a true joy to see what the children have been working on thus far. We were very proud of Mountain and Meadow who did so well all throughout! 

We spotted a new frog last week, made a beeswax candle, gathered our favorite leaves in the forest, made necklaces out of yarn and leaves, and made our hands red and pink from squishing poke wood berries! 

We ran, jumped, splashed and played. It was a good week. We really missed Ki Warren and are happy he's back with us! 

Meadow parents who sign up for snack, please bring in snacking vegetables (any vegetable you can dip in hummus) instead of fruits from now on, this will provide for the children’s second snack, while mountain garden will provide the fruit snack. We’ve noticed there’s been a lot of left over fruit and we can use the vegetables for MWF second snack and our soup on Thursdays. As a reference, the children usually eat roughly 10 lbs of fresh veggies a week. Thank you. 

One last request, please put the children’s change of clothes in a labeled bag! 

Thank you all and may we have a wonderful week ahead of us! 

Mountain & Meadow

Kindergarten: Aug 27 - 31

Happy September! 

This past week was especially exciting because we got to splash and play in the creek every day! We spotted raccoon and deer tracks in the sand and little fish in the water. The children gathered stones in a wagon and piled them into the channel where water would flow, without any suggestion from us! This was followed by taking turns wheeling each other around in the wagon. We found wild strawberries in the garden, an ant colony living inside a tree, and seashells by the creek. We made sand angels, a forest salad, and placed our painted stones down the forest path.

Our days are feeling more attune to the "breathe in, breathe out" rhythm that we hope to achieve. We are still working around all the transitions, however. It often feels rushed, especially coming in for lunch, so we are trying to see how we can make things run smoother still. 

It's been really wonderful getting to know and understand each child and seeing how they view and respond to the world around them. We am learning a lot from them.

The children look out for each other and ask one another "are you okay?" or "why is he/she crying?" There is a natural tendency towards empathy and wanting to help the other.

If you tried to send an email to mountain@ or meadow@ in the past week and it didn't go through, please know it is because our emails was changed. The emails were supposed to be redirected to the new email address but since that wasn't working we are keeping the original email, so hopefully we will be able to receive your messages now.

Also, now that we've got the garden beds cleaned up, we would love to start gardening with the children! If you know where we may acquire free garden soil, please let us know! 

As always, your energy and commitment to the children, school, and our community is very much appreciated. I am learning everything starts at home, and I can see that each child is so loved and cared for and I sincerely hope we can extend that love and care when they come to school each day. 

With Gratitude,

The Kindergarten Teachers

Meadowgarten: Aug 20 - 24

Good Monday Families!! 

We had a wonderful week last week settling into our rhythm and exploring the wonders of our campus. We have started having our forest play with the other kindergarten class and will continue to combine our energies during this time and snack time as well. We saw lots of creatures this past week including; caterpillars, butterflies, skinks, tadpoles, turtles, fun bugs, skiddish chipmunks, and our wonderful garden animals. We are looking forward to this next week as we begin to make bread and crafts, explore the creek, and learn wonderful things along the way. 

Thank you to all of the parents who came out to the workday this past weekend! We accomplished a lot and it was wonderful to see the community working together to better our space. If you did not make it, no worries, there will be other days and many more ways to contribute! This coming week we will be in the creek so please remember to pack extra clothes and shoes that can get wet!

We have a new floor in our classroom! We are excited to see how that helps cool the space, as well as how that changes the nature of our play. 

Thanks for all of your wonderful energy! Enjoy your week! 

- Meadowgarten Class 

Mountaingarten: Aug 20 - 24

Hello Mountain families!

Another good week is behind us and we are looking forward to the next! 

We celebrated dear Maya's 4th birthday, picked elderberries in the garden, went for a walk down the art walk trail and gathered our favorite stones that we would later paint, chopped vegetables for our soup, crafted a God's Eye, made a wildflower bouquet for our classroom, touched strange caterpillars, and enjoyed the early morning breezes. We are excited Autumn is near. 

We're looking forward to start our seasonal garden now that the weeds have been pulled. Thank you to everyone who came to help during the community work day! And thank you for the fruit! And everyone who has helped in setting up and putting away our classroom. Your help is appreciated. 

Sincerely,

Ki Fatima & Ki Aja

Mountaingarten: August 13 - 17

Hello Mountain Garden families!

This past week we enjoyed making sourdough bread for the first time, one of our children officially eats crusts now! We also started making our classroom folders so the children have a place to put their crafts and arts works. We made water color paintings using a single primary color.  We will build up using a different primary color each week and later we will begin to layer them and watch the magic happen.

We all begin the morning in song and circle and the children have already learned most of the songs and movements. We also almost perfected our walking circle. We have an appointed line leader for each day so each child may experience being a leader. We played in mud puddles, fed the animals, built fairy houses, and enjoyed each others good company. 

At lunch on Friday, the children were saying among each other "my mom is the best pizza maker in the world!" Until one of the children stood up and said "all our moms make the best pizza!" And they all came to this agreement. That little exchange describes our class very well. We're constantly taken back by the kindness and consideration these children possess and when there's something we need to talk about or work on, they respond so quickly. 

Overall I feel constantly inspired by our children. We're hoping to bring more activities and looking forward to learning more together. 

Peace and Light,

Ki Fatima & Ki Aja

Meadowgarten: August 13 - 17

It really was a wonderful week, and I am sorry to have missed most of it! 

Thank you for all of the well wishes and get well gifts! It only furthered my love of this place and appreciation for all those present. 

This week our meadow family got to explore the woods, making a fairy house village, forts, and lots of pies (from sand, dirt, mud, and everything in-between). We also got to explore the campus some more and become more familiar with all of our spaces, including the dome. We will still plan to be outside most of the time, but it is nice to have that space for when it rains and when a respite from the sun is needed. 

This week we will be in the creek so please, as always, remember to pack a change of clothes and a bathing suit if that feels like an appropriate option. Even when we don't splash in the creek, there is a chance of getting muddy and wet in puddles and more, so the clothes are important. 

There are a lot of mosquitoes around. We carry an all natural bug spray with us but if you have a preferred brand please spray them before school and send it with them. Please pack a "wet bag" or plastic bag with your child for dirty or wet clothes they change out of. Please also remember a change of shoes or rain boots as part of their spare clothing. 

We are excited to have the first full week behind us and to continue on with a wonderful rhythm and lots of adventure to come!! 

Ki Warren

Kindergarten: First Week of School

Hello Kindergarten Families! 

We are off to a great start of the year! We are so excited to have two kindergarten classrooms this year and the classes are already learning the rhythm to their days. 

We are also noticing where we can make some changes so our day can run smoother. We'd like for parents to please drop off your child's belongings under the sign outside where you will see the classroom teachers' names. Please let your child carry his/her water bottle down to the playground.. Also, if your child comes to school wearing his/her water shoes, please pack an extra pair of shoes that they may wear at the end of the day when they're heading to the playground, as their other shoes are likely to still be wet. Or if your child comes with different shoes make sure they also have another pair of shoes that can get wet. We will have a basket outside on the playground where they can stick their water shoes in (we can keep them at the school if you'd like).  

Sign-ups for snack for the kindergarten can be found in the Monday Messenger or in the Current Families section of the website.  Thank you, in advance, for your help!

~Ki Fatima and Ki Warren

Kindergarten April 16 - 20

This week was all about our three ducklings! We are enjoying them so much. 

Ki Azar read us some great stories this week in storytime.

In our Nature Moment, we went with Ki Sonya on a walk to explore the edge of the wetlands.

On Tuesday we celebrated Aura's fourth trip around the sun with her family and some funfetti cupcakes. We knew by this time in the school year that she would receive gifts of a stone, a button, a shell, and a feather to commemorate her four years.

On Friday, we walked along the new art ribbon trail to see art by our students and students at three art studios displayed throughout the pine forest. We climbed on top of the newly painted (well, it was fully dry) storm drain. If you have never seen a raccoon ride a bicycle, walk down the steep hill behind the retention pond to see this one! We ate our lunch at the picnic tables in the sunshine.

Kindergarten April 9 - 14

The kindergarten students participated in an archaeology dig in the sandbox and sandboat. They discovered and uncovered bones, shells, crystals, fossils, antlers, Native American artifacts, and more.

In storytime this week, we learned how the honey bee got its stinger.

Students' wildlife art posters were displayed in the Nature at Night art exhibit on the basketball court.

Kindergarten March 26 - 30

This week we celebrated the 5th birthday of our twins, Ezra and Lounes, with their extended family. Their Mom, Christine, made delicious coconut cupcakes for everyone.

We learned more about night animals and practiced drawing them. Finally we drew our chosen nocturnal animals onto the beautiful watercolor backgrounds we had created a week before. These will be submitted to the Nature at Night wildlife poster contest.

We visited the fairy hostel each day to see the changes that fairies had made to it and the new items they had added. We created our own fairy houses out in the forest.

We finished making and decorating the big folders that will hold all of our artwork.

Ki Sonya shared with us the story of How Coyote Helped to Create the Stars.

Kindergarten March 19 - 23

We celebrated two spring birthdays this week: Gabriela turned five and Lochlan turned four. In storytime, Ki Warren told us a Native American story about how the people came to have fire.

Ki Lindsey helped us create wet on wet watercolors in combinations of red and blue. We will be using these as backgrounds for our nocturnal animal drawings. Ki Sonya will be helping us next week with drawings of night animals to enter in the state wildlife poster contest.

For Creature Feature, we met a beautiful and very soft rabbit.

Kindergarten March 12 - 16

We started off the week by celebrating Oliver's 6th birthday. During Creature Feature, we met Ki Sonya's two snow dogs: a Samoyed named Story and a Great Pyrenees named Prancer. In the Nature Moment, we looked at different kinds of sea sponges. 

A trailer-load of logs was delivered and they made the perfect place to crawl about and look for hidden popsicle sticks. We also balanced books on our heads, discovered a new pine tree that had fallen to the ground, and sat on the wall in the sunshine. We are looking forward to warmer weather!

Kindergarten March 5 - 9

This week in kindergarten, Ki Warren told us a Seneca Indian story about Old Man Winter, the North Wind, and Young Man Spring.

We fed the miniature donkey and goats, made sourdough bread, and played in deep mud puddles.

In our Nature Moment, we learned how to line up objects in order of their size. Then we practiced by lining up pine cones, seashells, wooden frogs, and even ourselves!

We sat down by the pond with Ki Sonya and created a frog pond chorus using the wooden chorus frogs. 

Ki Tess from The Amphibian Foundation shared many special amphibians and reptiles with us during Creature Feature. These included a tree frog, a toad, geckos, a snake, and a bearded dragon. 

Kindergarten February 26 - March 2

This week the kindergarten students played in and on and around a tire, floated sticks and logs on the creek, slid down the banana slide, and picked up trash from the woods. 

We searched for hidden birds in the pine forest. We learned about birds with a visit from Perdido, the Great Blue Heron puppet. For our weekly Creature Feature, Ki Eve from the Chattahoochee Nature Center shared two beautiful birds of prey with us: a red-shouldered hawk and a barred owl. Students got to hold hawk and owl feathers during the presentation.

Kindergarten February 5 - 9

The first full week of February brought us some pretty sunshine and so much rain! We celebrated Violet's 4th trip around the sun with a birthday circle. We painted rocks that we will use to line the garden path. We played in deep puddles and mud holes. We felt different animal coats and learned about how animals with fur stay warm in the winter. In our Creature Feature program, we had a visit from Ki Kim and Ki Tim. They brought their two rescue greyhounds, Riley and Max, who received lots of pats and hugs.