Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Trees and Tattoos

The youth group explored face painting and airbrush art this week.  What a great flame tattoo!

Guest Aaron Sperry demonstrated some techniques.

The youth got to try out their new skills painting faces at the "stay and play" event after church today.

The Treasure Hunters class went outside to collect leaves from different kinds of trees.
The children made rubbings from the leaves and talked about the diversity of different kinds of trees, and ways trees contribute to our ecosystem.

The Discovery Class also explored the plants and animals of our ecosystem, and then made bird feeders out of pine cones.

Here are a few ideas for extending the learning at home:

Get or make some face paints, and enjoy decorating one another!

Try choosing an outdoor area near your home and keeping a list of all the animals you see there this week.  How does the habitat support them?  Where do they find shelter, food, and water?

Borrow or buy a book about identifying trees in our local area (there are plenty available through the local library).  Go on a nature walk and identify as many trees as you are able.  Or choose a tree near your home and visit it at different times of day and during different seasons.  Draw pictures of the tree, create tree poems, make bark rubbings, etc.  As you explore the tree, talk about the times when your heart fills with awe, wonder, and amazement in response to the web of life.

Do you have an outdoor space near your home?  Find out what animals live there.  Could you attract more animals by changing the environment (e.g., could you install a window box with flowers that butterflies or hummingbirds love)?  The Family Pages insert in the Fall 2012 UU World magazine has the theme "All God's Creatures. . . Even the Bat!"  Learn how human activity has disrupted bats' habitats.  Find out what some people are doing to help, and ways you and your child can get involved.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Fun on Father's Day

Our classrooms were busy places this past Sunday!  The nursery children enjoyed time reading stories and playing inside . . . 

 . . . then took a field trip out to the playground to enjoy the beautiful weather!

They enjoyed climbing . . . 

. . . . sliding . . . .

 . . . . exploring . . . .

. . . and just hanging out enjoying the sunshine.

The youth group explored their poetic side today.

They worked together to create group poems, each person adding a line without knowing what the others had written.

The results were entertaining.

The Discovery class heard a story about how some species of animals depend on one another, then made puppets to act out those relationships.

Children also enjoyed playing with blocks . . .

. . . painting, play-dough, and music.

The Elementary class went outside to play an active game of "Life and Death in the Forest."

Carnivores, omnivores, and herbivores searched for food and water . . .

. . . and tried their best to survive being caught by predators!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

World of Wonder Summer Sundays

Our summer Sundays classes got off to a great start this week!  Children in the Discovery (preschool) and elementary class each heard a story about a gecko and other jungle animals which highlighted the idea of all living things being connected in some way with one another.

Each class made a mural representing these connections.  Each week we will post something on the mural that represents the lesson from that day.

The elementary class also made beaded geckos.  These were a challenge but look really neat!  Your child may have brought this project home to finish. 

The youth group will be learning about different hobbies this summer.  The first lesson was on salsa dancing!

The youth had a great time learning these moves.  How fun! 

Youth Salsa Dancing Video