A spring curriculum tradition at The International Preschools is to learn about life cycles. Every year, IPS teachers receive caterpillars and/or ladybug larvae and, through observation, watch these tiny animals transform into butterflies and ladybugs respectively. Although COVID-19 has prevented us from maintaining this tradition in person, our crafty teachers were able to still take part in this amazing unit via Zoom (and their homes)!
Earth Day is celebrated on April 22nd every year, but at The International Preschools, we believe that Earth Day is every day! Although a special curriculum focus is placed upon taking care of the Earth throughout the month of April, the skills learned by the children are meant to be used every day of the year. Topics such as plant and animal life cycles, recycling, gardening, and keeping the Earth clean are touched upon inside of our classrooms during this time. Continue reading to learn more about the concepts that IPS students are exploring throughout the spring months!
Spring is an exciting season in play-based curriculum. Following thematic classroom units on the Earth, students at The International Preschools explore life cycles. Students of all ages are introduced to live caterpillars who are then placed in a “butterfly garden” and observed and recorded closely. Preschoolers excitedly experience firsthand as caterpillars enter their chrysalises and emerge as butterflies! For a few joyful days, the children enjoy spending time with their new “classmates.” But soon, the teachers will tell the class that it is time to release the butterflies to live in their natural habitats. There is a bittersweet “ceremony,” where the butterfly gardens are opened and its inhabitants are set free, to live in a local park.
Chicken eggs are introduced at each location in early May by Quiver Farms and are placed in an incubator until they hatch. All of the students (and teachers!) from the entire school spend time visiting and examining the eggs. Soon, the location is filled with delighted squeals of our preschoolers, as they have a front-row seat to the arrival of baby chicks! Under careful supervision, the students help to care for, and even pet, these tiny creatures for about a week. They are then transported back to Quiver Farms to live after a final goodbye and hug from the children.