It is finally time to send our plans for the Giant Instrument Vehicle to Victor so he can build the basic structure for us over Spring Break. Our main goal today was to decide what the dimensions of the vehicle should be. We decided on 46 inches tall, because it's close to the height of a lot of Tucker Room children. To decide how wide the vehicle should be, we measured the door and then shrunk the measuring tape down until it looked like it would fit easily, landing eventually on 27 inches. We also took a look at the dimensions of the tricycle, which will pull the vehicle.
"Neon colors are so pretty." Hadley
"They're beautiful." Ellee
Friends worked on making their colors "neighbors" or placing them next to each other.
Bruna, from Brazil, is Willa's former au pair. She came to tell us about Brazil, teach us a song, and try a delicious Brazilian dessert! Thank you, Bruna!
We'll leave you with another performance . . . Prater, Alex, and Ellee performing Alex's songs
(that he wrote today). HAVE A FABULOUS WEEKEND!
It was time to check our mailboxes and see to whom we need to write back.
We want to share with you how continually inspired we are by your children's creativity, joy, exploration, and relationships with each other - our values at St. John's! Their work on the Giant Instrument is at the heart of our philosophy. Throughout the process of designing and building, children have been generating new, original ideas and theories, listening to each other's words, remembering each other's ideas and problem solving if they believe something may not work. Just read the conversation below from Morning Meeting today.
Melanie - Today our job is to make more of the model. Yesterday Cassius and Lucy made a model of the Giant Instrument vehicle.
Cassius - That was a lot of hard work.
Melanie - There is a special something we were thinking of adding. How is it gonna move?
Rose – The bike!
Carl - Can we have the wheels under the instrument and we make a rope on the holes and then we attach it on to the balance bike?
Jay – We need to guard the front and the back because so it doesn’t crash into any vehicle.
Cassius – Hey, Joci we need to make signs for everybody (in the neighborhood). Because everybody needs to know or they will say, “Sorry, you can’t come in with your Giant Instrument.”
Lila - What if there is a button on it and you press it and the instrument will play?
Ellee – What if there’s a button that you press and a door opens on the instrument and then they could go inside and get snacks and water?
Cassius - Or like doors that are handicapped.
Rose – Or like you don’t exactly press it but you shake your hand and then it opens.
Mac – I went to the doctor where there’s a button on the side and you press it and the door opens and closes automatically.
Jay - Or a slide door that you press and then if you go forward it opens and back it closes.
Bruno – We said if we get tired maybe we could use a car.
Hadley – Maybe we could switch and someone else could pull the instrument for a few minutes and then someone else. So we can let another friend pull it.
Cassius – This is a new level. We need to think about this now . . . What if it overflows everywhere? The instrument will overflow.
Joci - But Jay said something yesterday about that. What was your idea, Jay?
Jay - Hooks.
Cassius - You have to have a strong enough of a pulley to pull them up.
Carl - Who’s gonna pull the bikes if nobody is on it?
Bruno – A truck or the video games.
Melanie - Can’t we ride the bikes?
Hadley – Everyone . . .
Prater - Not the teachers. What are you talking about?
Hadley – Oh yeah, everyone except for the teachers because I mean like there’s not gonna be enough room for the teachers because it’s way too little for the teachers.
Cassius - We need to write a book for everybody and then they can make it.
Melanie - On the computer, Joci and I have been making a storybook about the instruments. We want you guys to know, we want parents to know, and we want everyone to know about the instruments. But there’s a problem – we only have pictures and we need the story. So what we need from you guys is to write the words.
Joci - You need to be the authors. You have really good memories so you can remember what happened.
Hadley - When we leave the school, you guys will still be here teaching so you can tell the other people about it . . .
Cassius – They’ll know how to build one.
Adding to our paper model of the Giant Instrument Vehicle...
Our idea is that the bike will be pulled by a tricycle. So one of our goals in the studio today was to make a model of the tricycle itself, pulling the little vehicle by a string. In addition, we made progress on the walls of the vehicle itself. Alex, Prater, Jay and Mac all had a part in the tricycle, which is still a work-in-progress. At once point while Alex was working he said, "That did not turn out well. Okay, maybe I’ll change it later. Maybe I’ll just make two models and see what turns out better." It takes resilience and a can-do attitude to make something like this!
Mac and Jay's conversation while working together...
Mac: All you have to do is cut it. I’m going to cut one and then give it to you. I’ll put this wheel on.
Jay: It gets connected by two [bars].
Mac: It’s this size.
Jay: Let’s see… (compares two sizes of straws) Looks good. We need to cut it so they’re the same size. (Cuts both straws at once) These are the same size.
Mac: But we have to put them on the back (flips over wheels).
Melanie: What about the bar that holds up the seat?
Jay: Two! These… Hot glue the seat.
Mac: That’s the seat. Where’s the handles?
Melanie: We’ll also need pedals, and bars that attach to the pedals.
Mac: I’ll cut them. ….. I got one! Is this the same size?
The Doctor Hospital and the People Hospital...
After the events in the video, the the doctors visited the maternity ward! Willa and Grace both had several babies (all beanie babies). Doctor Rose and Doctor Lila both wore their latex gloves while delivering the babies.
Making a Model for the Giant Instrument (Vehicle)
Taking elements of what we learned from both of these visitors, we set off on a new goal today: To make our own model showing the vehicle that will carry all the instruments. While Cassius and Lucy constructed the model, they referred back to our lists.
Cassius and Lucy showed this model to everyone at second meeting...
Cassius: We realized [pockets] were on the wish list.
Lucy: Moon pockets.
Cassius: This is a trash can. We need recycling, I just realized! (indicates string attached) We want a tow rope. (points to yellow tape on top) This is for decoration.
Grace: So, we can put the string on a bike and then we ride the bike! I'll sit on there and relax.
Alex: I can picture the giant instrument already, in my head!
PJ, Alex's cousin, visited the Tucker Room for the whole morning. Friends remembered PJ from last year when she visited the Rainey Room. Later in the morning, PJ and her mom, Andrea (Alex calls her "Tita") performed a duet, Do Re Mi, on the keyboard. Thanks for coming, PJ and Tita!
After reading our conversations and the children's wish list for our Giant Instrument, Victor came in to explain his ideas and show his model. We'll revisit his design ideas and work with Helen next week in order to reach a consensus for our final design.
Our Mystery Guests today were Ellee's Nana, Barbara Sale, and Ellee's sister Lou Lou! When Barbara arrived, she gave each child a postcard with an image of a famous artwork from the National Gallery of Art. She told us that her husband (Ellee's Pop Pop) used to work at the NGA, and that their family is full of artists... including Ellee herself! Many children had a chance to show their postcard to the whole group.
First, Rose showed her image: a painting by Monet. (Look in slideshow for images)
Barbara: What's in the pond?
Jay: And alligators.
Barbara: What else could be in the pond?
Barbara: Tadpoles, fish...
Rose: Definitely fish!
Barbara: Does that look like a bridge you'd wanna walk across? That is a bridge in a place in France where the artist actually lived. It was a picture in his garden. And he painted lots and lots of pictures of those waterlillies.
One of our favorite postcard images was Mac's, which showed a sculpture of a giant blue chicken that lives at the museum!
Ellee: He loves chickens.
Barbara: (At the museum) you can look at it, and stand next to it, and think 'What would it be like if chickens were this big?'
Alex: I wouldn't eat them if they were blue.
All the artworks that Ellee's Nana showed us today can be seen at the National Gallery of Art Website: https://www.nga.gov/index.html
Thank you Barbara and Lou Lou for visiting!!
Snapshots from the day...
It was an exciting day with Lola visiting as our Mystery Guest! Friends drew pictures and built a house for her AND had wild romps on the playground with Lola. Enjoy the photo slideshow and movie below.
GRACE, PRATER, AND CASSIUS BEGAN WORK ON LUCY'S BIRTHDAY PRESENT TODAY . . . (THERE'S A CLUE BELOW).
Our Mystery Guest today was Suzanne, Grace's mommy! She shared with us her amazing talent of playing violin. Suzanne has extensive knowledge of the violin's history, which she shared with us as well. For instance, she taught us about Antonio Stradivari, a famous Italian violin maker from the 1600's. Suzanne played us one song in three different ways to show "vibrato" and "staccato".
Thank you, Suzanne!
Ellee had this to say about her drawing (in the slideshow above, the final slide):
"We can put magnets on the small instruments to put it together, so we can take it apart and then put it back together so we can get it out the door.
The lines are the magnets holding it together. These are the notes. That’s part of the instrument. All this is the instrument. These are the notes. That’s the sound from the instrument and that’s the vibration, the sound traveling into the ear - the blue dots are the sound in the ear and the pink dot in the ear is the ear drum, the lines are the ear hair. ... I’m making ear wax.
That’s the sound in the brain. Sound making the vibration, sound going into the ear, the ear with the nerves, the nerves traveling the sound into the brain. The dots are the sound."
We've also had several conversations about wheels. We brought out some very small wheels that were in our hardware closet to see if those might work. It led to a discussion about both the size of the wheels we need AND how many wheels we will need.
Jay: Those are for a cart, those are cart wheels.
Joci: Will these be too small for our instrument?
Hadley: No, we can put a bunch of them!
Jay: They will get stuck in the dirt.
Carl: Yeah, and they’re so small, and they will break because it’s too heavy. Or we could have the wheels (from) outside.
Joci: The giant tires? That’s like a monster truck.
Prater: How ‘bout first, we try them on the instrument, and if they don’t break we can use them. If they do break, we can’t use them.
Jay: Or we could try pushing it, and if they do break, we can take them off.
Mac: If those wheels break, we can do the ginormous wheels, but there’s only 3.
Jay: We need to buy one more.
Joci: Some vehicles have three wheels, like a tricycle.
Rose: I’m thinking of a scooter - it has three little wheels.
Prater: Well, a balance scooter only has two.
Jay: Some scooters that are not those other ones have two seats on them. Can you believe it? They have two seats.
Cassius: Has anyone here ever ridden a moped?
Adventures Outside today....
Obstacle course! Praveen and Cassius have started this amazing trend of using the circular arrangement of picnic tables and benches for an obstacle course that includes hula loops, "caution" rope, bean bag throwing, and the swing. We have kept it up that last couple backwards day. In this photo, Hadley holds a hula hoop, while Rose gets ready to throw a bean bag through the hoop and into a metal tin. Lila and Willa wait patiently at the swing where they will go from one table to another.
Prater leads the boys in negotiating who will play which part in "Lion Guard/Lion King" play. She uses a strong voice but also listens to what they have to say. She respects their choice to say "yes" or "no" to playing the part of Kion or Simba.