|For the month of November, the Bloom kids and I explored the topic of ‘Animal Worlds’. We spent the month letting our inner animals lose, exploring animal habitats and creating our imaginary animal friends, complete with their very own unique habitats. Drawing on what I’ve learned from the wonderful world of kids’ yoga, we slithered like snakes, roared like lions, soared like eagles, trumpeted like elephants, and groomed each other like monkeys. We went on a ‘trip’ to the zoo, using our binoculars to spot the exotic animals, and our bodies to re-create what we saw. We also brainstormed about what each animal might need in its habitat.
After exploring the territory of real animals, how they live, how they express themselves and what they need, the real fun began! We got to invent our very own animals, as well as create for ourselves what their habitats would be like. We had furry bats, fuzzy spiders, even animals with wheels to help them get around. Some were feathery, some furry, some sparkly.
Each home was created to be as unique as the animal that inhabits it. Most of the children included a cozy sleeping corner, many had water for the animal to swim in and food for the animal to eat. Some children included more luxury elements, such as swimming pools, art on the walls and curtains!
My greatest joy in seeing this project develop over the month, was witnessing the extent to which the preschoolers made this project their own. They had full creative license, and because of this, what they created was really their own. I’ve especially loved hearing about how some of the animals have become integrated into the children’s homes and families. One little boy sleeps with his animals wedged between his bed and the wall. Hearing about how the experiences we create here extend beyond the walls of Buddings makes my job that much more fulfilling!