Thursday, March 7, 2013


Today was a wormy day.  We collected worms out of the puddles and put them in the bug box to observe them.  Teacher Ann had a worm book-so during circle time we talked about what we already knew about worms: they live in the ground, they don't have legs, they don't have eyes and then we learned more about them: they don't have bones, they are good for the soil, they have predators ( a new word we'll be working on).  Some of the predators are birds and fish.  You can reinforce the word "predator" at home.  Noah mentioned later in the day that alligators are predators that can eat people.  So the concept was working well!

We learned a new song about worms too.

Thousand Legged Worm

Said the thousand legged worm as he gave a little squirm:
Has anybody seen a leg of mine?
For if it can't be found,
I'll have to hop around,
on the other nine-hundred ninety-nine!

Hop around
Hop around
on the other nine-hundred ninety nine.

For if it can't be found  
I'll have to hop around,
on the other nine-hundred ninety-nine!
When it came time to let the worms go-we spent time with math-how many worms were there?
9! and how many kids?  10!
Our hike today was deep into the woods, into and onto some giant stumps and many of us played hide and seek in among some huge sword ferns.
The stream was forded on the way home with varying degrees of success as the water was quite high today.  But everyone came through happily and with smiles they ran to the tire swing and back for lunch.
If you plan on having your child in TOP for the fall session-sign ups with the City of Redmond begin on March 19th.  At that time it is open to the public.

10 Fun Ideas to Celebrate Spring Equinox 

By Pamela Worth   |   February 26, 2013 Originally published on Chatterblock
spring equinox
What is the Spring Equinox, you ask? Spring Equinox is when the sun crosses directly over the Earth’s equator and day and night are of equal length. This year it’s on March 20, and it marks the first day of Spring!
Here are 10 things you can do celebrate the coming of Spring:

1. Go on a worm walk on the next rainy day or the first day of spring.

Worms are fascinating to watch. Follow up with a warm cup of hot cocoa and a great book that teaches kids (and us!) why worms are so important to the earth. My two book recommendations are  Compost, By Gosh! by Michelle Eva Portman and  Wiggling Worms at Work by Wendy Pfeffer.

2. Research composting with your kids.

Go to the library and read about composting and talk with your family about how great it is for the environment and your garden! Go on websites and visit gardening stores to find composters.  If you go to Whole Foods ask them to show you their composters in the back. They have huge composters in most stores, so think about what size you need or can fit.

3. Start a new tradition with a family gift on the Spring Equinox.

Why not make one of those composters part of your annual Spring Equinox family gift? Go for something that the whole family will benefit from and preferably something that gets everyone outside!

4. Take a rainbow walk in your neighborhood to see the blooming flowers.

Have each child hold a note card with each color represented with a marker circle. Challenge: Try and find each color in nature, not just a blue car etc.

5. Balance an egg.

There is a myth that the Spring and Fall equinoxes are the only days of the year that you can balance an egg on its end. On March 20th give this a try. The myth may last because most people only choose to try this on the first day of spring and fall!

6. Splash in puddles.

Simple old fashioned fun with rain boots or bare feet. The bigger the splash the better!

7. Spring cleaning.

Pick one drawer or one shelf or one closet a day throughout the first month of Spring. If you choose to spend 8 hours cleaning usually everyone burns out. Make a chart/calendar and and assign everyone to one section each a day, or do a section as a family. In our household with four kids, this means 6 drawers a day or 6 shelves. Of course things come up so it’s more like the first four Sundays of Spring, but we get it done!

8. Spring closet cleaning.

Let the kids choose what outgrown and unused toys and clothes to give away. Have them set up their own garage sale to take place during the warmer weather. See if there is something new for summer they want to buy by pooling all of their earnings together or if you can convince them to have a garage sale for a favorite charity.

9. Plan a garage sale.

Kids as young as 3 can participate in the sale. Our kids were able to buy a trampoline with their earnings and a year’s worth of change, saved in a jar. We did match their money, which helped, but they were so impressed with what they could do when they saved!

10. Before the sun is out regularly, plant a bud garden in an egg crate.

Find veggie, herb or flower seeds for the kids to make buds inside. All you need is a little soil, light and water! By Mother’s Day you all should be able to plant them outside.
Pamela Worth is the owner of Tiny Treks. She knows all kinds of great ways to explore the great outdoors with the kids!