April 20 -24, 2020
Journals, Books, and Stories
This week, KW children worked on various types of books. Our Tuesday Zoom call was dedicated to journals. We began with reflecting on art journals together:
Louise - Art journals are for all of your art.
Lily Bieligk - You can make books and do something like color in them or do art in them.
Louise - On the last day of school in Rainey Room, when I came home, I showed my whole family.
Louise went on to show us a few pages from her KW journal from last year. There was a page dedicated to friends that featured their photos, a page called "Wonderland" with family drawings, and a pink page. Maren then presented her new journal, saying, "This is my notebook that I made. All of them (the pages) are blank." Clearly it was time to get started.
As we worked in the journals, Jessica showed us a "happy accident:" a place where some paint had dripped unexpectedly. Sally chimed in with a creative and compassionate response. "Maybe you could turn it into people, because it looks like people to me. My friend told me if you make an accident, it still looks pretty. It's like a masterpiece. It doesn't have to be perfect."
From there, children suggested prompts that we could add as we worked. These included a star (possibly a rainbow star), a house, and a butterfly.
Thursday's Zoom encourage mark making to sound and music. Joslin responded with marks, but also with descriptive language. She said, "I heard a grumbling sound," and mentioned another noise sounded "...like a choir. Like when somebody dies." Indeed, it did sound very somber.
The children's graphic responses were unique. They used wavy lines, spirals, swirls, and shapes. They colors were also varied as they represented the sounds and music.
A Quick Look at Other Experiences
"Hard times require furious dancing."
On Thursday, we made marks to sound and music. There was also some movement! Luke McColough and Ellee Sale were dancing. Grace M. was snapping. Louise had some fancy footwork, and Lou Lou's head was bobbing. To keep this going, next Friday's Zoom will feature a dance party!
We observed the children making connections to their shared relationships and one another across the miles that separate us:
When Joslin got on a Zoom one day she told us she had just been on a Zoom with just Lisa. She then asked Lou Lou if she came right from her Zoom with Lisa because she knew Lou Lou was next to meet with Lisa. Lou Lou confirmed this and the two connected over their separate but shared experiences and relationships.
Lane asked Evelyn on a Zoom: "Are you in Montana?"
On Zoom and Seesaw, children shared messages they had made and were actively making for peers, family members, and theirselves.
Children asked one another questions and commented on one another's work.
We observed connections being made by children across concepts, mediums, and experiences offered:
Children used what they had discovered in the mark-making experience to later express emotions. They took an exploratory concept about mediums and materials and translated that into a meaningful expression of another concept; emotion.
Jossie made connections from books read at home and through read-alouds with concepts being explored in KW experiences, such as finding a spiral or "curly-Q" in a book read at home to reinforce the concept of a spiral found 'in nature.'
Lou Lou and her sister Ellee used mark-making on their messages and Maren and Evelyn added to messages they had received from Jill...adding color to negative space.
We hoped that families would have access to paper and natural materials. We didn't expect to see the wide range of materials that we saw this week. Children worked with puff paint, glitter, gems, popsicle sticks, google eyes, wash tape, and flowers. Children used a variety of adhesives. An impressive array of tools came into play: hole punches, staplers, needles, thumb tacks, and glue guns.
Children encountered problems and challenges as they decorated headbands and bound books. We repeatedly saw them try new strategies to overcome their obstacles. One common problem difficulty this week was using the appropriate adhesive. After all, it's not easy to make delicate flowers stay on an egg. Children patiently made different choices and met with success in the process.
Siblings often joined in the fun. As we explored materials and processes together, we learned of connections. Will Clarkson has a loose tooth and Sam's sister Claire recently lost a tooth. We heard stories of things children had built with their family members and games they had played together. Although we are not physically together, children were still asking questions of each other and incorporating the ideas of others in their work. Parents were important partners as well. While making her crown, Ellie commented, "Me and mama are making holes."
In these ways, our work continues together, even when distance separates us. Thank you for making this week a success. We're already looking forward to coming back together next week! In preparation for the coming weeks, Tucker Room and KW made journals over a Zoom call. As the call ended, Gigi said, "I love my journal book."
Another discovery happened over Seesaw this week. Joslin shared a story of something she discovered over Spring Break:
Ellie responded with a personal audio comment back to Joslin. This new tool of recording one's voice in the privacy of home, perhaps, amplifies some children's voices! Ellie clearly articulated her thoughts and feelings, making and showing connection between her experience and that of Jossie.
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