The kindergartners from both classrooms at Sunnyside had the opportunity to visit Warner's Nursery and Willow Bend Environmental Education Center! It was a beautifully sunny day, perfect for learning more about plants and nature.
We started the day at Warner's Nursery, where we were greeted with a creative sign welcoming us!
Ms. Kathy and Ms. Tree led us on a tour around the nursery, where we learned about the difference between perennials and annuals and about which plants like sun and which like shade. We also got to visit the many fruit trees that are growing at the nursery.
After the tour, the children were given a small pot and were invited to choose seeds to plant in their pot and take home! Ms. Kathy and Ms. Tree taught us a song about planting that we've brought back to the classroom and taught to the preschoolers!
Once everyone had planted their seeds, the children were invited to play in the playhouse on site at Warner's Nursery. Eagerly, the children ran to the playhouse, only to discover that it was locked! Ms. Misti, the store manager, cut the playhouse window screen and bravely climbed through the window to unlock the door! What dedication!
By midday, the children were very hungry and were happy to eat their lunches in the greenhouse among the plants!
After lunch, we said "goodbye" to Warner's Nursery and took a quick busride to Willow Bend. Inside the education center, Ms. Lauren talked with the students about using their five senses to explore their environment.
Then, we all headed out for a hike to put our senses into action! Ms. Lauren and Ms. Lisa encouraged the children to feel several rocks and talked about how the air bubbles in lava rocks make the rock feel rough. The children used their sense of smell to experience Ponderosa Pine trees in a whole new way!
We all walked as quietly as we could, in order to hear the many sounds of nature. The children heard birds visiting a birdhouse high above, the wind rustling through the plants and even a runner panting on the Urban Trail as he passed by! Ms. Lauren and Ms. Lisa gave the students paint sticks with many different colors on them. The children were challenged to find something in nature that matched their stick! It was fun to realize just how many shades of colors exist when you really stop to look!
In the gardens near the Education Center, our guides talked about how we use plants for beauty, medicine and even eating. The children were encourged to choose a leaf off of a rosemary plant and taste the somewhat bitter herb. Every student was curious enough to try and many enjoyed the taste....
...while some did not!
What a great day to spend outdoors, learning more about plants and nature! Thank you to Misti, Kathy and Tree at Warner's Nursery and Lauren and Lisa at Willow Bend for making our day so special!