Back in the Classroom – Work, Charlotte’s Web and Fabulous Funscapes

Wow – what a great couple of weeks we have had at school. This is the time of year when the Grade Ones really take off. They have mastered the basics of reading and are now really getting to grips with Reading, Writing and Mathematics. No longer are they laboriously writing just one sentence and drawing a picture for their news. Now after half an hour when I say write your last sentence and put a full stop I am met with Oh no Mam Please can I write more. Music to a teacher’s ears.

We were also lucky enough to have The South African Youth Theatre present Charlotte’s Web to us in the school hall.  They had the children totally enraptured and some of our little ones were called up to take part too!

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Enraptured

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What will happen next!

Budding Performers

Some of the farm animals!

Next week we are having our grandparents to visit. We have been praising hard on our presentation on Time and the children can’t wait to show off all their school to Granny and Grandpa. We are looking forward to seeing here very important people on Thursday next week.
The children, after working so well, deserved a mid-term break and the famous Funscapes were organised for this past Thursday and Friday. In the Foundation Phase there were ten options to choose from. There was Loopy Looming, Creative Clay, Mosaic Magic, Movie Making, Baking and a variety of other exciting choices. I was delighted to share my passion of bird watching with 25 Grade one, two and three boys and girls. On Day 1 they all gathered in my classroom where we went on a journey of discovery and learnt all about water birds. We discussed their bills and beaks and legs and feet. We found out where they lived and what they ate and we learned how to tell one from the other. I was delighted to hear why they had chosen to do the bird watching Funscape – “I have nesting birds in my garden and that got me interested in birds;” “I love listening to their songs;”  “I love the beautiful colours in their feathers;”  “I just love animals and bird;”  “thought it would be fun to use binoculars!”
It was also great to see them so focused when they did the activity sheets. Each child was given a flip file to store their work and it also contained a bird I.D. card game for them to make and a chart with all the birds they were likely to see on our outing.

We found this chaffinch in the playground

We found this chaffinch in the playground the day before the outing

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Working diligently at their tasks

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Have we got the colours right?

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This card game is going to be fun

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We know the names of some of these already

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Three very keen little Twitchers

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Taking care to get it right

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Even at play time these two sat and compared bird books!

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Of course the outing on Friday to False Bay Ecology Park was the best part of all. Thanks to the six parents and my sweet husband who assisted us with lifts. Driving around with a carload of children can have its moments! Having my hubby who is also a bird enthusiast meant we could split up into two groups to explore the park with less chance of the ones at the back missing anything. Each car had a walkie talkie so we could comment on what we were seeing as we went along. I am eternally grateful to my friend Heather who always lends me her three to add to my own on such excursions.
The weather in Cape Town has been cold and wet most of the week but we were fortunate to get a break on Friday and had a lovely sunny day. The roads, too, were not too muddy! However, there were not as many birds around as I had hoped. But we saw enough to keep the kids interested. The flamingos gave a good show and the highlight for most was the Spotted Eagle Owl well camouflaged in its usual bush! It took a while to make sure each child saw it. I took a photo, asked those who were struggling to first find it in the picture then to look for it in real life. It worked like a charm!

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Using binoculars was fun even though some of them found it tricky to get them to focus quickly on the birds that duck under the water and then turn up in a completely different place again!

Little Grebes duck and dive

Little Grebes before they disappeared under the water

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The flamingos gave us a good show

The flamingos gave us a good show

Cape Shoveller - male and female

Cape Shoveller – males and one female

Yellow-billed ducks

Yellow-billed ducks

Cape Teal

Cape Teal

They all recognised the Black-headed heron instantly

They all recognised the Black-headed heron instantly

First look at the picture - spot the owl then find it in the real bush

First look at the picture – spot the owl then find it in the real bush

Focus your binoculars on him and there he is!

Focus your binoculars on him and there he is!

I hope the children enjoyed, this their first introduction to bird watching.  It is something that can become a hobby for life!

 

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2 thoughts on “Back in the Classroom – Work, Charlotte’s Web and Fabulous Funscapes

  1. How wonderful your children chose Bird Watching. It looked a lot of fun and makes kids more aware of what beautiful birds we have in our land. Well done sure they had a great day.

    Like

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