They were absolutely enthralled with the crystals growing inside! She set up a station where friends could come and look closer. The next day, another friend brought in a beautiful geode that looked a little different. They started wondering all kinds of things about the geodes which lead to discussions about if other rocks can be geodes and have crystals inside. I asked if they wanted to explore further to find out and they most definitely did!
Here is my planning web.
I set up one area for them to look closer and use their writing and drawing skills to document what they noticed. This area also was a perfect opportunity to sort objects based on their properties and attributes, then use writing and pictures to record how they sorted them.
This was a favorite area to visit! I mixed science with art in our art area! I set out some polished agate that the kids thought were so beautiful!
They used the digital microscope to look closer and notice the crystals and rings. Then they used water color to create the beautiful, colorful rings. That last step was to add salt to their wet watercolor to create the crystals and see how the salt grabbed the water color!
I also set up an area with magnets for them to explore.
I put some rocks in our sensory table with the sand and some photos of transient nature art for inspiration.
Below, some friends worked to show feelings using the rocks.
Some loved creating animals.
Unfortunately, we were only a week into exploring the rocks and learning about the different types of rocks, crystals and jewels made from them when the schools were all ordered to close so we were not able to finish this exploration. This group really loved looking at these rocks and I hope it sparked an interest in geology for them. Some had big rock collections already and some started collecting during this study. I hope they continue to collect, observe and sort their collections by attributes. Egg cartons are a great way to keep their rock collections organized.
Here are a few pictures to show some things they created in other areas of our room at the time.
It has been over a week without seeing them and I miss these little friends of mine so very much! I am working on what my virtual/digital class will look like. I will work hard to help parents continue the discovery based learning that their kids love so much through our life experiences at home. The environment of our classroom was considered a teacher on its own in the way it was set up, but they also learn from their natural environment at home! Hopefully my next blog post can help with that! Until then, stay home and stay healthy!