Unit 5 Shadows and Reflections

We have moved into Unit 5, Shadows and Reflections!  In this unit, we read books containing the themes of Shadows and reflections as well as a major sub-theme of a deep study of animals.  We read more books by familiar authors, especially Ezra Jack Keats and Jim Arnosky.  Jen and I have gathered many specimens throughout the years and we offer the children the opportunity to touch a real turtle shell and the skull of an alligator.  Here are some of the storybooks we have started out the unit with.

Kitten for a day     Raccoon        Dreamsarmadillo

Building with reflective blocks-and goofy faces!

After reading, "Raccoon on his Own,"  the children experimented with mirrors to create reflections of animals as well as themselves!
Much of our learning in this unit centers around animals, both water creatures and mammals.  In Raccoon on His Own, we learn that Raccoons like to eat crayfish.  We learned about crayfish and the children were able to touch real crayfish as well as look at informational books about crayfish and lobsters.
After experimenting with reflections, we read the book Dreams, by Ezra Jack Keats.  In this book, a small mouse puppet casts a shadow that grows as it falls to the ground.  We learned the definition of the words transparent, translucent, and opaque and we learned that opaque items cast the strongest shadows.  Here are a few buildings from the block area as we experiment with creating our own shadows!
shadow buildingtanner thomas

We read "The Puddle Pail,"  by, Elisa Klevin and in this book, the crocodiles are interested in making a collection.  One crocodile makes a "reflection collection!"
Puddle pail
Here, Claire and Jannah are making collections of their own by sorting like items in the sand table!
claire jannah

Finally, the children had animal puppets and were able to act out the stories that we had read throughout the unit.
chloe and maliyah