As NYC residents, sometimes it can feel hard to get enough nature to be satisfied. Children love exploring things in the natural world and are inherently curious about the way that things work. At Buckle My Shoe, we are intentional about bringing the wonders of the natural world indoors, using our sensory bin, setting up science experiments, and using natural items as nontraditional paintbrushes. 

This week, we have done a few fun things with natural materials. On Monday, we had the whole sensory bin filled with brightly colored fall leaves. Although they were fabric leaves, a whole conversation started about how the leaves change color each fall. We practiced jumping in piles of leaves and sang a song about leaves falling slowly to the ground. 

Tuesday we went on a walk to the market to buy pumpkins. After picking out big and small pumpkins together, we walked back to the class and decided what to do with the pumpkins. The first suggestion from the children was to wash the dirty pumpkins. With warm water and soap in the sensory bin, each child got a chance to scrub the pumpkins clean, getting them ready for future art and science projects. We plan to gut a pumpkin next week! 

Wednesday brought a twist to a classic science experiment; making volcanoes with baking powder and vinegar. As the base to our volcanoes, we used apples! We explained how the materials worked together to create the foam lava. 

Additionally, we have natural materials all throughout our school. Pine cones, leaves, plants, and sticks are all around and are just as important and fascinating as the wooden and plastic toys in our school.

This week, think of ways can you incorporate nature into your home or daily routines. You might be surprised by how natural materials captivate your children's imaginations! 

See you tomorrow, families. Expect your weekly detailed recap on Friday. We have done even more than these nature projects over the last few days. Friday is also Jack's birthday! We can't wait to celebrate with him. 

-Miss Alana