Today, was another day with temps. below zero and if it weren't for the little ones all hidden behind their "ninja masks" you never would have known. On days when the weather is especially chilly we tuck into the forest or down in the valley to protect ourselves from the wind. Today we went to the outdoor classroom and while the children played I started a campfire.
From my experiences, fires seem to be a place where people naturally gather to sit, to sing and to share stories. A place to build community. As the fire that I was tending to came to life and started to dance with flames of red, orange and yellow most of the children came over to sit next to me... silently at first and then after a few minutes they started up their own conversations. Their conversations turned into stories. And their stories turned into silly stories. Before long everyone was giggling.
I am not sure what sparked the first silly story but before long everyone had one that they wanted to share. That is when we started our group fill in the blank story... the kids loved the MAD LIBS type story telling. Together they contributed to story after story and likely would have sat there the rest of the day laughing with each other if their bellies didn't tell them that they were hungry. So before we headed in for a warm up and lunch we ended with a story about a king that went to the zoo to pet a dinosaur ;) (3-4 year olds humor is the best!!)
(Next time you need a giggle just narrate a story and include your little ones by leaving blanks to fill in. It makes for some really good, silly stories! Bonus: it helps build language and literacy skills.)
I am Meghan Morrow, the founder and lead teacher at Secret Forest Playschool in Duluth, MN. This blog is a way for me to share some of the amazing moments that I witness and the lessons that I learn from some of the wisest people I know... children.