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Tanner's Journal (Happy Feet, Healthy Food, Breakaway Books)
Tanner carries his book home each night.
April 30 , 2004
The weather has finally turned mild. We were able to get outside both days this week and on both days we started out on the trail.
On Tuesday, the children were very careful when they slowly jogged down the rocky trail. They spaced themselves and paid attention to their footing. Our walk around the pond was fun, but there were no "peepers" this week. The trees are just showing signs of spring with tiny buds. We could still see the squirrels' nests at the very top of the trees.
I often let the kids run up the hill. The hill naturally slows the kids down a little, so I allow passing and running at their own pace. I always get a head start so I'm at the top of the hill when the kids arrive.
RUNNING BASES IS ALWAYS FUN
We ran around the baseball diamond. It was still wet out on Tuesday, so some of the children would go home mud splattered, but that's all part of being a cross-country runner.
OFF TO THE FIELD
We jogged slowly around the field, then played Slap-hand relay. We had 3 teams on the north side of the field directly across from 3 teams on the south side of the field. On the "Ready, set, go!" command the first runners from the north ran across the field, gave a "high 5" to the first players on the south teams, and got at the back of the south teams' lines. The high-fived runners from the south side then ran to the north side, high-fived the next runner, and got to the back of their new line. We played like this for a while until all children had a turn or two. We weren't competing, but were just enjoying the fast sprinting.
Thursday, we did the "Indian File" drill. We slowly jogged double-file, with girls on the inside and boys on the outside. While we were jogging, the boy and girl at the end of the line would sprint to the front of the line. As soon as they got to the front, the runners who were now at the back of the line would sprint to the front. We lapped the field until each runner had two turns. Then it was indoors for water, reading, journaling, and math mileage tabulation.
On Thursday, I changed our "classroom" routine. Before we went outdoors, I settled the children down and we did the reading from our books.
BEING A LATE BLOOMER
We were on page 12 in our Happy Feet, Healthy Food. Page 12 is my first cycling page, so I talked about my bike riding a bit. Not all of the children can ride a two-wheeler yet, and I wanted them to know my story. I could not ride a bike until I was 10, but I'm now an avid cyclist and participate in the PMC, which is a 192-mile fundraiser for the Dana Farber Institute (to help find a cure for cancer).
The children seemed very surprised that it would take me so long to learn to ride, but whether I just wasn't ready when I was younger, or whether it was the wrongly-sized huge bike my parents had bought for me with clunky training wheels which kept me from riding, I won't know for sure, but one day when I was 10 years of age, I just looked at a little two-wheeler that belonged to a friend and I knew I was ready. I got on the bike and just took off.
QUIET WORKING TIME FOR KIDS
I told the children that as soon as we returned to the room, after our running, they could get right to work with journaling: recording their physical activity, filling in their time tracker, documenting their healthy snacks, and creating in the artists' corner. While they were doing that, I'd be filling in our new mileage totals on our bulletin board. The last thing they were to do before they left for home, at the end of the day, was update their own mileage folders. This worked much better!!! When we returned from runningthe kids were more focused, quiet, and busy. Better than when they'd have to keep stopping and listening to me every step of the way.
Please check back this weekend for photos of the kids in the classroom.
Lauren opts to keep her Happy Feet, Healthy Food journal in school, just for the club.
Please check out my after-school club - HAPPY FEET, HEALTHY FOOD KIDS' CLUB