March is the month when the word “look!” becomes a welcome refrain.
As small signs of the transition to spring begin to emerge — the initial buds on trees, the splash of bright color amid the brown as crocuses and forsythia bushes begin to brighten the outdoors — children remind us to slow down and notice these changes.
Each day in March, we experience those hints of blossoming to come. It’s the perfect time for simple activities that bring you and your child closer to nature.
Create a construction spot for natural sculptures or fairy houses. Designate an outdoor space — beneath a tree, the corner of a porch or patio — the Construction Spot. Here, children can keep all the natural treasures they pick up as they go through their day. Are you finding the area around your child’s car seat filled with rocks, feathers, and acorns? Periodically, those items can be relocated to the Construction Spot. Here, children can put together natural sculptures, make up games where the pieces are strangely shaped sections of bark and sticks, or assemble fairy house villages.
Plant a small container garden together. Now is the time to get seeds started or to begin planning little pots of color or edible delights. Containers are manageable for children (and garden averse adults!) and can be shaped around a child’s interests. Do you have a fan of strawberries living in your house? How about pizza?
As small children, our sense of change is largely shaped by the shifts that come with the seasons — getting to wear shorts and sandals, picking flowers, swimming in the ocean or a lake, gathering leaves, carefully saving snowballs in the freezer. As we age, that understanding deepens, and as it does, so too does the knowledge that with change can come joy or sadness. It is with a combination of both that we announce the coming departure of two TMS staff members.
Ms. Anna will be leaving to join the graduate ornithology program at Appalachian State University. After receiving word that she has been awarded a grant and field position studying the Golden Wing Warblers that arrive in the Appalachians in April, Anna will be leaving earlier than she expected. Good luck, Anna!
Ms. Elizabeth, the lead teacher in the TMS Toddler Program, who with wisdom, energy, and loving kindness has given our youngest students such a beautiful start to their school journeys, will be leaving at the end of the school year to begin a new and wonderful chapter in her life. Her powerful influence will continue to be felt in the years to come at TMS, and even as we miss her daily presence, it is with such admiration and gratitude that we celebrate her joyful future.
As the seasonal changes begin, I wish you all a month of many discoveries.
– Ms. Amanda