This week we closed out our study on waste!
Over the weekend teacher Mariko took a picture of a trash can in our wonderful park that was overflowing with trash. Students made observations about the image and started drafting solutions to the problem of too much trash! Many ideas involved recycling. Most kiddos knew about recycling but didn’t quite know how it worked yet.
A fun challenge that lasted throughout the week was the great balance beam! Kiddos had taken a really big fallen branch and balanced it between two picnic tables and underneath the created a mud pit! With some careful spotting from adults kids took on the challenge of making it across the treacherous balance beam without falling in the mud!
On Tuesday we dove deeper into our learning about recycling to see if that was a solution to our trash problem in McGolrick. We watched short video that showed us the different processes that materials go through to be recycled. Many friends were especially excited about how both metal and plastic are put into a really hot oven to be melted before they are made into new items. Maybe recycling is the key to solving our trash problem!
We had more waterslide action by pouring water down the slide and then zooming down!
We also had a very special visitor, Agnes the husky dog! Agnes and her owner, a neighbor of a wBees student, kindly allowed many friends to pet her gentle doggo and even take her for a “walk.”
On Wednesday we found the fattest caterpillar in wBees history! All kiddos did a great job being respectful to the creature and made sure it made it back to a safe spot after everyone had a chance to take a look.
Inside we busted out the snail sensory bin. We looked closely at how snails use slime to move along as they travelled on our hands and arms.
We also did more investigation into recycling. During circle teacher Mariko took out 10 plastic bottles and said that these 10 bottles represent all the plastic in the world and asked students to predict how many of these bottles they think would end of recycled. Friends did some great critical thinking when someone pointed out that there was definitely some plastic in the picture of the trash can in McGolrick so that means it couldn’t be all 10. It had to be at least 9 or lower. In the end teacher Mariko revealed that only 1 bottle would end up recycled. Unfortunately, recycling won’t solve our trash problem in McGolrick! Kiddos were quick to come up with other ideas like repairing toys rather than throwing them out when they are broken and not just buying new things but used toys and clothes as well.
On Thursdays we had our second field trip of the summer! We had so much fun in Bushwick Inlet Park. As soon as we arrived we noticed that the trees in this park were very different from the trees in our regular space. One tree had huuuuuge bean pods that we broke open and found magical beans! A very fun game was Elves vs. Trolls in an epic battle over the magic beans. Teacher Adrianna was a brave member of the troll team but was no match for the powerful elves.
We did a beach cleanup at the edge of the East River and separated our clean up into recyclable and landfill. Kiddos did a great job picking up trash even the really icky stuff!
On our way back to home base we stopped in McCarren to play and munch on popsicles that helped us cool down.
On Friday after our beach cleanup we were curious about how trash impacts the waterways so we did a little investigating. We learned how plastic can interrupt the natural food cycle that is so important for all life including humans! We read Sea Bear and about trawling and how that really hurts the animals that have waterways as their habitat.
Phew! What a fun week!