Focus, Concentration, Effort, and Imagination

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by Sarah Lu

Today was one of the those days where Laura and I were giving each other a lot of special looks- you know the one.  Some of the children in the morning were having a bit of a tough time.  And as teachers we sort of forgot our Let’s-Take-Them-Outside-When-They -Seem-Like-They-Need-To-Go-Outside Tool.

However, once we arrived outside there was a palpable SURGE of energy towards deeply collaborative play. I think what we are witnessing right now, which happens most years around this time, is a community growth spurt. It is like when you or your own single child goes through a growth spurt, and are exploding with new information, and a bit off-balance, and a bit harder to handle than usual.  Well we go through growth spurts as a community too; they are exciting, and challenging, and beautiful.

We came in half an hour later than usual for lunch because our outdoor play was so focused and brilliant.  But even inside before we went out, there was an intensity during the work that we were doing (finishing up our Anger Monsters). And even before that, in the midst of the chaos, there was a fine concentration and inventiveness that made we want to document these days of fire and surge.

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5-2014-01-224 4-2014-01-223 3-2014-01-222 2-2014-01-221 1-2014-01-22After our outdoor time, at lunch, Laura told the story of the Snow Child, which she often does this year at lunch. This has been part of our emergent curriculum, and Laura has done some new work with the Thursday/Friday cohort that she shared with our group today- shadow puppets created by the kids, that will be used in a shadow puppet play about the Snow Child. This was another moment of reflection and focus.

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