Birds with Anne Marie and Clare

The children have been showing a lot of interest in birds; both outside, at the lake and in the forest, and from the classroom window. We have been sharing what we know about birds and learning from each other. As adults we have been encouraging children to wonder about birds and to look carefully to encourage questions and research.

‘I dream of being a bird and flying’ A.

There is a lot of sharing of experiences about seeing birds injured and helping them.
Children use ink to draw birds. It’s interesting how different they all are. After the atelier we look at them together and notice that there are some things common to all birds. We can begin to think about why some are big or small? Have different colours? Have different shaped beaks or wings? etc. 
We begin to think about the different lives of birds.
‘A falcon is the fastest bird’ D.
‘A pokemon is as fast as a falcon’ A.
We wonder why they need to be fast and where they go to? 
‘Ils partent au chaud l’hiver’ M.
We get the globe and talk about migration.
‘Il y a un oiseau qui ressemble a une noix de coco. Il a un bec marron, il est tout rond.’ L.
We search for him in our bird book.

Different materials give different effects. Working with black paper, pastels and paint fires the imagination,
‘Its a flying ostrich breathing fire.’ A.

Anne Marie and I meet to talk about next steps. We love this idea that some children shared, of dreaming of flying. She suggests introducing them to the work of the artist Chagall. She shows them the work of the artist, I read them a wonderful children’s book based on the artist, which leads to a discussion on dreams. We agree that in dreams anything can happen, 
‘Even houses can fly!’ M.
The children work collaboratively, using their hands to apply paint and create a background.

They then draw their dreams.

I set one of their large collaborative paintings up as a backdrop for small world play. I also included shells and pine cones and construction parts for more potential for dream-like fantasy story-building.
We connected a camera to a projector so that their play was also enlarged and projected on to the wall. 

I placed two other dream-paintings as the backdrop to small world play in front of the overhead projector. The idea is that the children can continue the stories they began whilst painting in another dimension, even adding to their painting/drawing if they choose.

Anne Marie cut some of the collaborative pieces so that children who wanted to work individually or on a smaller scale had that opportunity.

Birds hatching from their eggs

The next step in our research on birds is working in 3D. To encourage the children to deepen their understanding through form, and also to give another medium which will be the favoured means of discovery and expression for certain children. I will update the blog with the 3D work in a couple of weeks. In the meantime continue to look and wonder and question.


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