Welcome to our Dragonfly Cove Care Home and our Nook and a Book reading corner. This blog is a living, growing record of our kiddos during this beautiful time in our lives together. This kind of blogging is as personal and intimate as writing a journal or diary. Memories and experiences are the greatest gifts we can bestow on our children. Here we document and share the unique experiences, ideas and inspirations enriching our lives and the children in our care. You will see various pictures of our kiddos learning through play and inquiry in every day life

A couple of ideas and quotes related to our blog and growth...

"Life isn't about finding yourself; It's about creating yourself."
"Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass; it's learning to dance in the rain"

My passion and love of learning stems from a belief that learning is a life-long process. We strive to be open and adaptable to the many changes and challenges of everyday life. I try to model continued learning as the children see me reading, studying and implementing new, creative adaptations and theory to our home indoor and outdoor environments and lives. By giving them these roots, my hope is they will also follow a path of inquiry and know as students of life, they will always be learning and growing

Here is an excerpt from "How Does Learning Happen? Ontario’s Pedagogy for the Early Years" which directly pertains to our blog here...

"a means of sharing perspectives with parents and colleagues. When families and others are invited to contribute to the documentation and share their own interpretations, it can provide even more insights that children, educators, and families can return to, reflect on, and remember in order to extend learning."

We love reading your thoughts and comments! Thanks so much for embarking on this special, memorable journey with us... lots of love

Thursday, 29 June 2017

Summer... a time of nature submersion, reconnecting and discovery:)

End of June... Beginning of a new chapter... turn the page...
Today is the last day of the school year!  Hurray:D  Which means it's time to delve deep into summer... Slowing down and immersing ourselves into the experiences that rejuvenate us, reconnect us and inspire us... we get to live in the day to day closeness we wish we could have all year long.  

School often feels like the interruption to "us" and our journey but school is essential and we learn best from a village:)  Many teachers mean many perspectives and a collective knowledge to light your candle with.  

I hope this summer expands and enhances their year long learning and rekindles their love of learning with new study techniques to take them on the next length of their journeys...
My Eldest Son:  Graduated from Elementary School January 27th and will continue on to High School in Grade 9 this September... 

My two middle Sons completed their perspective grades and feel very optimistic about the autumn and their journeys into grades 7 and 3...

My Daughter and my other darling in care will enter Junior Kindergarten and their first experience in a formal classroom... so far... Nature and our home environment have been a third, unseen teacher and I know they are filled with the curiosity and persistence that comes from a self-directed, open ended play based learning environment♥

I am so proud of the wonderful individuals they are and cherish these times we share together♥

They played this wonderful video at Brendan's grade 8 Commencement Ceremony and I believe it is a perfect ending for this chapter and a perfect introduction into the next...

 For summer... we will take this time to slow down... I need to remember every moment... I cherish this time... my sweet babes... slow down... ♥

Wednesday, 7 June 2017

Inch by inch, row by row, someone bless these seeds I sow...

Inch by inch, row by row, someone bless these seeds I sow... John Denver... he was such a lovely soul...

One of my babes won't be tucked in tonight because he is at camp with his friends... I miss him and hope he is happy and content... 

This song is dedicated to all my sweet loves tonight as they drift off to the land of nod... wishes for sweet dreams and a blessed slumber   

Season 4, episode 1 of the Muppet Show. John Denver's take on The Garden Song, complete with singing plants.

Monday, 5 June 2017

A small spherical toy often made from glass, clay, steel, plastic or agate... Yes... It's a Marble!

I love the creative, unconventional way kids play with loose parts!  
These are some of the cool creations the kiddos have made up using marbles!
Creativity. Blocks and other loose parts can be moved freely by children, to be combined and recombined in countless ways.—Angela Eckhoff
 Here is the link to my kiddo demonstrating his lego and marble game:) 

Self-esteem. Children discover that they have ideas and that they can bring their ideas to life by creating, transforming, demolishing, and re-creating something unique.—Holly Bohart

If at first you don't succeed, try, try again♥ This is such a great example of teaching the kids to be persistent... keep trying... your mistakes are your best teacher and you could look at it as "trial 1, trial 2, trial 3... success!"

 Problem solving. Sometimes it is intentional: “I want to build X. How do I do that?” Other times it is in-the-moment: “To go higher and add to one side, what can I use?”—Peter Pizzolongo
 Here is an example of the kiddos engaged today in that kind of problem solving... after some creative thinking, they made it work:D

How To Play the Classic Marble Game of Ringer
Most children understand the game of marbles the first time it is explained, but to make it easier, these drawings show the most common plays. 

FIG. 1: To start a game of Ringer the children lag from a line, drawn tangent to the ring, to a parallel line across the ring, which would be 10 feet away. The child whose shooter comes nearest the line has the first shot. Players must lag before each game. Practice lagging, as the first shot may mean the winning of the game before your opponent gets a shot. In lagging, a child may toss his or her shooter to the other line, or he or she may knuckle down and shoot it.
FIG. 2: This shows child No. 1 who won the lag, preparing to knuckle down. His knuckle has not quite reached the ground, which is necessary before shooting. He can take any position about the ring he chooses. (The process of picking the best possible position for starting is referred to as "taking rounders.") The 13 marbles in the ring are arranged as in tournament play. For casual games, a one foot ring is drawn inside of the ten foot ring and each player puts in some 5/8" marbles, so that there is about a dozen marbles in the smaller ring.
FIG. 3: Child No. 1 knocks a marble from the ring on his first shot and his shooter stays in the ring. He picks up the marble. As he has knocked one from the ring, he is entitled to another try. Players are not permitted to walk inside the ring unless their shooter comes to a stop inside the ring. Penalty is a fine of one marble.
FIG. 4: Here we see child No. 1 continuing play. He "knuckles down" inside the ring where his shooter stopped on the last shot. This gives him the advantage of being nearer to the big group of marbles in the center of the ring for his next shot. Expert marble shots try to hit a marble, knock it out of ring and make their shooter "stick" in the spot. "Sticking" or shooting seven consecutive marbles out of the ring and winning the game without giving an opponent a turn is usually good for two days of playground bragging rights.
FIG 5: On this play, No. 1 hit a marble, but did not knock it from the ring. At the same time his shooter, too, stays inside the ring. He can not pick up the marble, and whether he is allowed to pick up his shooter depends on the type of play - in tournament play, if your shooter is in the ring at the end of your turn, you must remove it. In casual games, if your shooter is in the ring at the end of your turn, it becomes a legitimate target and any player who hits it out collects a forfeit from you, or even your shooter! (Players should agree in advance whether to use this rule.)
FIG. 6: Child No. 2 may start by "knuckling down" anywhere at the ring edge. In this case he may shoot at the 11 marbles in the center or if he wishes, he may go to the other side and try for the marble that No.1 almost knocked from the ring. In a casual game he might also try to knock the other player's shooter from the ring.
FIG. 7: Child No. 2 chooses to try for No. 1 child's shooter and knocks it out of ring, winning all the marbles No. 1 has taken (and his shooter, if that rule is being followed) and putting No. 1 out of that game. Or he could shoot as shown in Fig. 8.
FIG. 8: Child No. 2 hits a marble but does not knock it out of the ring, yet his shooter goes thru the ring and stops outside where he may pick it up. The target marble remains where it stopped in the ring, and as No. 2 did not score, it is now the turn of No. 1 to shoot again.
FIG. 9: No. 1 "knuckles down" inside the ring where his shooter stopped (Fig. 5). he is going to shoot at the marble nearest his shooter. By hitting it at the proper angle and knocking it from the ring he can get his shooter near the center of the ring for his next shot. Play alternates until one player has knocked a majority of the marbles out of the ring.  
Go to www.landofmarbles.com/how-to-play.html for this printable and so many other fun marble games:D

Friday, 2 June 2017

Canadian Tiger Swallowtail... so many lovely butterflies visiting our backyard habitat:)

 The Canadian Tiger Swallowtail 
(Papilio canadensis), so pretty... 
We'll have to go around on the weekend to check out all the new blooms and new butterflies!

Here is our life cycle of a butterfly that can be found in our nature center:)  It's perfect for continuing the conversation and the learning... curiosity and inquiry♥
 All the butterflies are attracted to the lilacs.
We have 4 different kinds of butterflies we have had the privilege of documenting this year.  We've also been fortunate to have humming birds who frequent our fragrant blooms each year♥

Thursday, 1 June 2017

First day of June:)

Come into the woodland,
sit by the moving water,
translate the bird calls,
laugh at simplicity,
feel the air surrounding you,
touch the living rock.
Feed your soul
Author unknown


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