Doodlebugs- David Donovan - 3 hours
This was a very special day of Doodlebugs. David Donovan, the Naturalist who has done the Doodlebugs program for the past 3.5 years, had his last day. He was very good at what he did, and in the few weeks I spent with him at Silverwood I learned a lot about how to communicate with children that age, and some really great classroom techniques.
This week, we spent about equal amounts of time between our art project and time spent outside. We started with our project, which was coloring a paper plate, and then cutting it into a spiral and attaching a string to the top, so it was a "snake". After everybody finished their projects, we took them outside to test them in the wind, to play with them and watch them move. This was a lot of fun for all of the kids, but after about 10 minutes nobody wanted to hang on to them anymore! It was a really play focused day of learning at Doodlebugs, which I think was a great end to David's time as aleader for that group.
Waterford Senior Living Outreach - Alyssa Riggs - 3 hours
This week at Silverwood, I helped one of the naturalists Alyssa Riggs with the Senior Living outreach program. We went out to Waterford Senior Living center, which is located in Brooklyn Park, Minnesota. This was my first experience ever teaching people of this age group. Alyssa used science/nature as an introduction to the art lesson, which was making a small paper lantern out of an envelope. The envelopes were decorated by the seniors using stamps that we taught them how to make as well. I found this craft to be the perfect level of complexity- something that is fairly simple but did require some listening and technical skills.
Something that was really intriguing to me about this experience was the similarities and differences of working with people that are very young, or very old. Both groups of people have a pretty broad spectrum of ability, with some individuals wanting you to do the whole thing for them and other offended by your offer to help. The group seemed to really enjoy the craft and many looked forward to giving the small lantern as a gift to their grandchildren.