Our kids got to EXPLORE, PLAY, and CREATE at the farm and guess what….SO DID WE!!! It started out with us (Jessica and Christine) recalling connections and discoveries with the kids from their previous experiences at the garden. We moved into our next unit of study, which was at the farm, but needed to build a bridge for the kids as to WHY we would be studying the farm. This led into a discussion around the idea of “where else does food come from.”
Then we were all able to take a trip to the farms in New Jersey…..virtually! There are not farms accessible to Christine’s kids in the part of California they live in. This gave Jessica and her kids a chance to share something that IS local and easily accessible, just like the garden in California was ready to share when we explored plant life. Jessica visited a few farms and collected images and videos of animals and their living spaces. We took those pieces and created a virtual farm experience so the kids could venture the farm!
The virtual farm experience sparked an opportunity for wonder from the kids so they could think of an animal they would like to learn more about. The kids took notes, drew their animal, and recorded a fact on their animal to contribute to a whole group compilation of a digital mural, BETWEEN OUR TWO CLASSES, which you saw at the top of this blog post.
Check out the variety of experiences that came from our garden exploration and led us into our play at the farm in the table below. Chapter 5 of Innovating Play has a section with more details about the Playing at the Farm unit our kids engaged in. It includes a detailed lesson plan of the pacing for the duration of the study, supplemental resources, and of course corresponding standards! The Innovating Play book is available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble.