Eggs and salad
Garden ACTIVITY: The children each got to plant an assortment of lettuce seedlings. One of the children said proudly, “I’m planting salad!” Jane brought some wonderfully colourful pinwheels for the children to also plant in the garden. “The pinwheels keep the plants safe from birds who want to eat them.”
Animal Ativity: Feed the chickens in the chicken coup and collect an egg to take home. This was an important follow-up from last week because a couple of the children had an encounter with the chickens pecking their fingers when they were feeding them grass through the fencing. So this was BIG to go into the coup and be surrounded by the hens. They needed to feed them seed; they could either sprinkle it on the ground or have them eat it from their hand. At first they just threw it at the chickens and they saw how the chickens ran away. But soon they learned that if they “sprinkled” it, the chickens would come closer. Some were brave and held their hand out and the chickens pecked the seed from their hand. It was a bit scary because the chickens move in so fast and peck kinda hard. One girl came up with a solution to put the seed on her boot so the chickens would get close but her hand would be safe. THEN we had the highlight of the day: collect an egg that was laid that morning to take home. We had little baskets that they could place their egg in. One volunteer suggested lining the basket with grass to protect the egg so they did. Then there were lots of questions, “Which chicken laid the eggs?” “Will they grow into chickens?” “Why are there only 4?” “how did they get here?” One thing you could hear the volunteers saying, “You have to be careful or it will break.” And BOY OH BOY were these children careful!!
After carrying the egg back to the garden, we suggested they put their name on it and put it in an egg carton to take home. The children did more than just write THEIR name it: they gave it its own name and wrote that name on it, drew flowers and rainbows on it, made a bed of grass in the carton, kissed it, covered it with a leaf-blanket, talked about incubating it into a baby chick, and on and on….. Imagine their horror when we suggested they scramble it the next day and eat it!! At our closing circle, the volunteers emphasized the dangers of keeping the egg in their bedroom… one suggested poking a small hole to drain out the inside and then they could keep the shell forever. That was received about as good as the “eat it” suggestion.