Mrs. Sweezey

Welcome to Our Outdoor Classroom.

Posted: June 15, 2017

Outdoor education means going outside rain or shine.  There are so many learning opportunities to be had outdoors, like taking risks and challenging the limits of our clothes.  Here are some students having a ball jumping in our "swamp."  They are dressed warmly beneath their Muddy Buddy (waterproof wet suit), pant legs are securely pulled over their rubber boats, and some have their hoods pulled up over their heads.  The children are not discouraged from playing in the water, rather, we spend a lot of time talking about safety ("the log is slippery when it's wet"), establishing rules ("don't throw mud at anyone's face"), and dialoguing each senario ("how is the water getting in your boot?").  Some learn quickly that water gets into their suits in sneaky ways and then they are left feeling cold, wet, and uncomfortable.  Guiding the students to come to these conclusions themselves is more meaningful than me telling them what the problem is.  However, there are some days when you just gotta forget it all and  go for it, which is why it is super important to pack an extra set of clothing for your child to change into daily.     

Posted: June 14, 2017

The kids have been quite adventurous these days.  Climbing the side of the playground structure is the newest challenge for our crew.  Some have been doing it for awhile and some are just finally reaching the top.  What's interesting about this video is that the first child climbs the structure and rounds the corner easily.  Both children are the same age, height, and build, but Mrs. Sophia just isn't there yet.  We talk a lot about safety and check in with eachother daily when doing risky activities and from my conversation with Sophia, she was scared and in her words, "not ready yet, but I can jump down."

Posted: June 13, 2017

Here the kids are using jump ropes to set traps for "The Joker."

Posted: June 13, 2017

Posted: June 7, 2017

I have been trying remove the words "be careful" from my vocabulary because they have a negative connotation and assumes that the child isn't being careful.  Not only is Gia being careful, but she is also assessing risk, taking her time, testing her personal limits, and practicing her balancing skills.  What you don't see is that this was her 3rd attempt.  She fell, she crashed, and she slipped, but she was 100% determined to cross that log.  Why put my worry on the students?  When engaging in risky activities, I simply ask, "Do you feel safe?" Can you tell I ask this question a lot? ;)

Posted: May 29, 2017

Posted: May 29, 2017

It was a little chilly outside, so today we stayed in and did a mini science experiment and made some Oobleck.  A little bit of water and a little bit of cornstarch and what do you get?  Is it hard? Is it soft?  What is it?

Posted: May 25, 2017

Just off to the side of basecamp is a tall grassy spot where the kids like to sit in and peer over the grass like little lions.  Here is a pride of boy lions roaring their mighty roars.

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