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Following the child

Hello and welcome to winter! We had an excellent December in the Forest, making leaf elves and other crafts, playing on the poplar tree and of course jumping about in the creek. We had some extra fun this month that came from doing that magical thing, "following the child". When educators use that term it sounds great, but what does it actually look like in practice? Honestly, it's not something that happens (or works) all of the time, kind of like art. For us it began with a book: A Pirate's Night Before Christmas. After we read it we went walking in the woods like we usually do. Axel found a strip of bark that he decided would make a great pirate's map! So when we got back to the cottage I got out the markers and paper and suddenly everyone was drawing maps! So I followed their lead and decided, let's make a map of our forest! We spent many days slowing down, noticing and drawing the woods. What makes a good landmark? Where are things in relation to each other? The last week of school before break I made up a treasure hunt. Ms. Paula generously gave me some geodes that I put in a box and hid it in the creek. After finding and solving the rhyming clues, the Forest explorers discovered that the map they had made now had a big X on it. So they followed the map and found the treasure! Everyone got to choose a geode and hopefully they had fun learning about maps!

I hope that your holiday break is full of both magical moments and time to rest. I'll see you in January!