Thursday, 25 April 2013

Daffodils for a spring provocation

This week I borrowed a provocation from one of my PLN partners: Laurel Fynes at This Kindergarten Life blogspot. She put out a provocation for her students and I thought what a great idea.

Our kiddos have been very interested in flowers, gardens, and growth over the last few weeks. We have begun to create our own indoor garden; keep tuned for another post solely dedicated to this.

So while I was out this week I bought a small pot of flowers that had just started to show their buds. We could see some yellow just peeking through the tops of the "leaves" as the kiddos said. I put this pot out on our art table and added some green and yellow paints in a few shades. Many of the kiddos flocked to the table during Learning Centre time.

At first we had large papers set out to see what creations they would make with the one pot of flowers out as a model. One kiddo began painting some daisy type flowers, while another took in the details and made a replica of what he saw. As there was still a lot of white space left to his paper he began filling in all the white spaces with more green paint that he described as "adding more and more petals".

It was fascinating watching and documenting their process. To further investigate how the kiddos could focus their sense of detail, over the next few days we put out paper of a smaller scale. Surprisingly, the kiddos began to really paint what they saw; they were no longer painting random flowers rather we began to see the detail of the slender leaves, and the varying colours in the flower heads.

When asked what they wanted to name their paintings, all the kiddos thought of a name of a flower. Having never told them these flowers I purchased where called daffodils, it was interesting to hear the various names they used: "sunflower", "lily", "marigold".

Next week we may have to take a trip outside to our school gardens as I have seen some tulip heads starting to poke up out of the ground. These could add to our painting provocations. Maybe we'll see some new colours for next week.

1 comment:

  1. Oh, this is wonderful - wait 'til I show my kids what is happening in other classrooms! I'm glad your students enjoyed it too.
    Our cut flowers are now gone, after the students discovered that the cut stems had gone "slimy" and "smelly". The potted daffodils are nicely papery, brownish, and fascinating to watch as they begin to wilt and wither away. The pussy willows are amazingly long-living, leading to lots of wonder: "What's wrong with the daffodils"?
    One thing I've noticed is that those amazing details come whenever you invite students to look another way, like you did by changing the paper. Adding mirrors under the pot, magnifiers, coloured fabric, or putting the pot on a pedestal: all change the view or even point of view.... and leads to great conversations about what they see, think, connect. Enjoy your garden walk, and please keep us informed!