What the Leaves Blew In…

fall_leaves_1_Winter is just around the corner (pout, moan, cry). But before its official debut, I thought I’d pay tribute to the wonderful adventures we embarked on during our study of Autumn.

Autumn LeavesWe began our exploration by taking an investigative walk around the school yard, looking for evidence of Fall.  Among the many things we observed, students marveled at the beautiful, colourful leaves everywhere; leaves of different shape, size and colour.

IMG_3884As with any great investigation, we had to gather specimens to bring back and explore further in our classroom – red leaves, yellow leaves, big leaves, little leaves, oak leaves, maple leaves, and what’s this – acorns, pine cones, flowers, twigs and rocks – all were welcomed.

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Over the next several weeks, we were quite busy inquiring, learning and integrating our artifacts into every aspect of our day. We read many books about Fall, trees, seeds and leaves.

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We documented and wrote about Fall changes. We learned about and labeled the different parts of a leaf. We counted, graphed, sorted and made patterns with leaves. We even made a pine cone shaker (to complement the seed shaker we previously made during our Apple inquiry – it turned out to be a great way to distinguish between the different sounds seeds can make).

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We created art with leaf rubbings and leaf stamps (students loved creating their own Leaf Creatures, which after being displayed on our walls, made an entertaining class book).

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It was endless! The ideas kept pouring, and the fun and learning continued.

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For the culminating activity, we created a class book where each student got to contribute their idea to a page about leaves (parents really enjoyed looking through it during our Fall conferences). Students also had a chance to read a personalized book about leaves with our Grade Three Reading Buddies – they were so excited, I was so proud.

IMG_4373Though I generally have an overall sense of where I’d like an inquiry based opportunity to lead, I can never truly predict how vast or fruitful it will grow to be. It is the students’ curiosity and eagerness that determines the direction and range of learning. Regardless, I am always pleasantly surprised and excited to see where each inquiry will take us.

GravatarEnjoy the last bit of Fall everyone. Thank you for your time.

Lora

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11 thoughts on “What the Leaves Blew In…

  1. Recently, I ran into my teacher from grade five, Mary Lou.
    I loved this teacher. She inspired curiosity and conversation in me at such a little age. Our class learned how to have a true discussion under her guidance.

    When I ran into her (I am now 30), she looked at me with care, and said to her friend “This is the student that came to my door when my mother died, she had a little gift for me”.

    I replied “I remember the day you mother died, still. We were in class, and I remembered that you were called out into the hallway, I remember you crying. I remember how much I wanted to help you, but didn’t know how.”

    At such an age, how does one show their teacher love? I looked to the most beautiful thing I could find at the time – I gathered the fall leaves, orange, red, and gold – and I put them in my sympathy card. I felt they were brilliant treasures.

    Your story reminds me of the love and curiosity teachers inspire.

    Liked by 2 people

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