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In the Classroom: The Doodlebugs

The Art of Exploring Nature

The Doodlebugs are exploring nature inside of the classroom through art and science. We began by studying the changes of natural materials with water. Recently, we took a closer look at the texture changes of dirt when we add water. 
Tessa and Fiona used their fine motor skills to grasp the spoon and reach down into the cup to add more dirt to our mixing bowl. We honed our observation skills to see if we needed more water and or dirt. We tried both, adding more water, then more dirt. 
The children stirred fast and then faster, round and round. The Doodlebugs were interested in exploring the changes in texture by dipping their fingers into the bowl. We noticed the "bumpy" feeling and added more water. 
Their interest provided the teachers with the opportunity to introuduce new language. We talked with the children about pouring "more" and looking “closely." We learned new words to describe what was happening. Morgan asked the children, "is it wet?" and "how does it feel?" Teachers used descriptive words to express what they see and feel.  Words like “wet", "smooth", and "sticky" were used to help build the children’s vocabulary. 
We noticed that the Doodlebugs were ready to  move on to painting with the dirt and water mixture, when Tessa said “all done.” Monica helped Tessa and Fiona bring the big brushes and paper over to the table. We dipped the brushes into the dirt to get just the right amount. 
The children made markings on the paper to create their masterpeices. The expereince of nature in the Doodlebug room is one that helped the children discover, create, extend learning, and build inquiry skills and language development.