It was just over two weeks ago that I changed the blocks in the playroom. I put the heavy wooden blocks back into storage and brought out the Duplo blocks. I also put away the big trucks that were in the block area and brought out the coloured baskets.
We’ve used these baskets for sorting colours before and because the Duplo blocks are so brightly coloured I thought the children may be interested in sorting the blocks into the baskets. I place the baskets under the block bin and as I was putting the new blocks in the block bin I sorted them by color above the corresponding basket.
Originally I did it ‘just for fun’. Organizing stuff is ‘my thing’, the little ones are usually more interested in ‘reorganizing’ but I was curious to see how long it would remain like this. It wasn’t until I finished getting everything put away that I realized that if I had put the purple bin and miscellaneous blocks on the left side it would have been the correct rainbow colour order. I just left it that way instead.
The next day when the first children arrived I did ask them to but the blocks away in the ‘correct’ order when they were finished playing with them. These two school-age children are here earlier than the little ones and sometimes they have already left for school before all the preschoolers arrive. I wanted the little ones to have the opportunity to see this particular setup.
Interestingly, two weeks later the blocks still look like this. The younger children don’t tend to take out many blocks at one time and at clean-up time they have been able to put the majority of their blocks in the appropriate section. The older children and I have been moving the occasional mismatched blocks and repairing the blurred lines between the sections.
The older children actually seem to like having the blocks organized. They are the ones who are most particular about colour when they are choosing blocks for their creations. Having the blocks organized by colour means they don’t need to spend so much time searching for the blocks they want.
I’ve also taken this opportunity to get some ‘rainbow’ and colour themed books from the library;
These are our two favourites. There are few words and plenty of pictures to keep the little ones interested. I like the nature themes too;
Can’t wait until there is more colour outside – we’re getting tired of just white and grey and looking forward to rainbows and colour outside as well as inside.
Winter is on its way. Yesterday there was a light dusting of snow. I like snow much more than rain, I like the way it highlights the surfaces;
We can still see the grass and I like the contrast between the green and white;
I planned to take the children for a walk first and then play in the yard. The sidewalks were so slippery that the toddlers had difficulty staying upright. We just made it to the end of the block before turning back. Then we were facing the wind — hello winter! That was quite a shock prompting the 5 year old to shudder and ask “Is winter almost over?”
Luckily the back yard was sheltered from the wind and not slippery like the sidewalks. The children and I were much happier here. I noticed several of these around the yard;
I was informed that they were rainbows;
The children’s favourite activity was running back and forth on the walkway;
They had a lot of fun and there were some tears when it was time to come in. Yes, winter shocked us a little at first but we love it.
Today is officially the first day of Spring.
At circle/calendar time last Friday the children cheered when I told them that. I think they believe that the snow will miraculously disappear and we won’t need to bundle up to go outdoors.
I’m sorry to say that is not correct. In the fourteen years that I have been providing childcare only twice have we been snow free by the end of March.
This year there is no chance that the snow will be gone any time soon. There have been a few warmer days – enough to create ‘Lake 108’ as we kindly refer to the puddle in our back lane.
This picture was taken early last week when the lake first formed and we stopped parking in the driveway because we didn’t have a boat. By yesterday evening it was 18 inches deep in the centre, extended past two houses on either side of us and was on the verge of breaching the mini dike we had built along our fence line.
Thankfully some city workers stopped by this morning to steam open the frozen drain and we no longer have beach front property. We do still have plenty of snow – and ice.
Last week we also got to celebrate St Patrick’s Day – one of my favourite events. I’m not Irish, I think for me the appeal of St Patrick’s Day is really the promise of spring. Rainbows and green things and magic.
I didn’t make an all green lunch as I have in the past. The children do seem to think that it is fun but they simply will not eat artificial green food. I do miss not having ‘rainbow bread’.
Sandwiches with rainbow bread were a St Patrick’s Day tradition here until the local bakery upgraded their bread makers and the new machines can’t create the swirl effect.
We recite our favourite poems like ‘Rainbow Colors’ by Sharon MacDonald
“So, wave your arms above you
Cast your colors high
And, try to make a rainbow
Across a cloudy sky”
And dream of grass and green things to come.