It was time to celebrate our learning from our “Flower
The whole idea of the tea came to me from a gift that Michelle Roth,
our student teacher, gave to me. I was blessed with the wonderful gift
of a variety of flower themed items including 4 jars of jellies all made
with flowers. I knew this would be something I would share with my students
in some form or another. The jellies included Pansy and peach jelly,
rose and raspberry jelly, lavender jelly and finally nasturtium and jalapeño
jelly all made by "flowers. as food" a small company in Black
Diamond Alberta you can investigate at www.sagekitchen.com. (I am nothing
if not a promoter of companies that I believe in). Another company with
whom I am a complete believer is Steeps Urban Teahouse (www.steepstea.com).
To have a tea, you have to have tea to drink. I had to have flowers in
the tea and I mean more than just chamomile tea from Sobey's or Safeway.
I needed real petals, but I am not much of a tea drinker so where do
I even look? That is where Steeps came in. After the car show last weekend,
my husband and I discovered this warm little store at the bottom of Mount
Royal on 17th avenue. I bought four types of tea with amazing scents
and it turned out, delicious tastes as well. Again, the hopeless promoter,
I will give you the details of each one. Summer Rose is a relaxing and
soothing mix of chamomile, rosehips, cinnamon, apples and spearmint.
The parts of the tea are large and chunky and you see real rosehips and
chamomile buds. It was most popular with the moms at the tea. Imp's Herbs
contains peach flavour, peppermint, rosehip, hibiscus, leaves of raspberry
and blackberry, safflower and marigold blossoms. Yummy and what I am
on my third big cup of this Saturday morning--not bad for this non tea
drinker! Those two were Herbal Infusions and the next two are from the
Rooibos selection of teas--(I don't know what that means, but they are
certain types of tea with flavours within each type). Bushranger is a
green Rooibos with blossoms and a peach orange flavour which is advertised
to be just heavenly. And finally Rainbow which is a true pot of gold
to the children and me due to his sweeter taste and very flavourful nature
with a blend of fruit flavours and amaretto notes and a beautiful look
due to all the mixed colours of blossom petals mixed within it.
At the tea itself, students were amazing ambassadors for the school
and were very articulate in describing their learning. Not only did they
take expert care of their family members by bringing them tea and scones,
but they were able to show them the plants we were nurturing, talk about
which growing conditions were optimal and why; share their plant inquiry
learning from their scrapbook work; talk about their inquiry while browsing
the (now updated) website; assist their parents in filling out the AISI
survey with their family members.
How did this art show come about?
In Kindergarten, we explored the relationship between plants and people through art. Learning in this inquiry is driven by the students who expressed interest in how things grow, and were amazed at how interconnected people and plants really are. We discovered that plants give us clean air, something beautiful to look at and to psychosocially restore us, they clothe us, shelter us, feed us, offer us recreation and peace. The students realized that without plants, we would cease to exist. A portion of time was spent determining what conditions are necessary for plant growth, documenting the growth in various conditions, manipulating the elements, etc. Students examined various authors and artists and compared and contrasted their beliefs about plants from their work. How plants fit into our culture and holidays was a component of the inquiry as well as touching, measuring, sorting, separating, etc. real plants in the classroom. In April, we concluded our Robotics portion by creating and programming a robot to help individuals who farm flowers. The robot sensed pre-dug holes and stopped just past that hole to drop in a plant bulb, and then it continues on seeking more holes until the field is planted.
This art show is a venue for the students to show their excitement about a year long inquiry and to take ownership of their own learning, by sharing what they know with their family, friends, and other art appreciators. It also allows further collaboration with their peers and families as knowledge is assimilated and restructured from this meaningful event. Accountability is ensured via an activity which connects students to the art of their peer group so they can appreciate the amazing quality and depth of work from the students.
(As generated by the students in both classes.)
The Glendale Kindergarten students went to the Glenbow Museum on a yellow school bus. Mrs. Patsula made groups for us and we all had a leader. We sat with our leader on the bus. We thought it was bouncy on the bus and we had such a big bounce once, that some of us bounced right off the seats.
To get to the Archives department, we took a freight elevator. The elevator was a gynormous elevator that had to be big to hold even big art. It was very special to use that elevator because normally it is not for us, only people who work there. At first it was a little scary but I learned it was just like a normal elevator, except bigger. At the Glenbow we looked at all different art and some were even crazy looking statues made out of bees wax and a painting made with candy sprinkles. In the Archives Department, Quyen took us to see Annora Brown’s flower paintings. Annora Brown painted all kinds of flowers from Alberta. Kids liked how Annora mixed all of her colours. There were all kinds of different colours in her art on the flowers. We noticed she made speckles in the background with her brush. We also liked all the dark backgrounds on her art. Annora Brown had to make around 500 paintings for the Glenbow because so many people wanted the art that she already made for the Glenbow so she sold some to other people. We know she was as old as a grandma and still painting. Once when she was camping by the lake on a hunt for flowers, a bear walked near where she was sleeping. Annora watched the bear go to the lake and take a long drink and she never moved. The bear was right in front of her tent. She went hunting for flowers all over Alberta and then she dug them up and took them to her home garden. A friend found her a gardener to help her so she would have free time to paint but the gardener thought all of her plants were weeds and he threw them all out so she started all over bringing plants to her garden again! We think Annora made good art that was very pretty, and we think she was a nice lady.
After the Glenbow Museum, we went to a park called Olympic Plaza. At the park we ate our lunch as a picnic. We sat in the sun and the shade to relax. We could not walk in the wading pool because the workmen were fixing the pool for the summer. It was really fun there, running on the grass and eating our lunch on the steps.
Then we walked to the gallery of Chester Lees and Audrey Mabee called Art Central. There we looked at art in our groups. Mrs. Patsula took a picture of us with the art that was our favourite. Unfortunately, Chester and Audrey were not in their galleries so we looked inside their window to see their art. Axis gallery is run by Audrey Mabee’s son and we saw an entire show of Audrey Mabee’s art in there. We were thinking that our friend artists would be there, but they were both off teaching other school kids that day.
To get back home, we took the bumpy bus again and it was great. Our bus driver was a nice man. On the way back to the school, the bus kept stopping because the bus driver wanted to check the back door. When we got back to the school, we had a school photo in the garden and then Mrs. Patsula splashed us to cool off. Finally, we drew a picture of our favorite part of our field trip. This is that picture.