Sep 28, 2017

Wild Rumpus, in the Wild (one-off outreach events)

We did two Saturday neighborhood festivals this year.  The first was at West Fest and my two favorite happenings from the day involve a series of short videos of some siblings playing with the innertubes:




So much joy!!

The second favorite happening was observing this young building making a bridge.

Wild Rumpus West Fest 2017

I love his "I did it!" at the end of the first movie and I just want to point out that if I had given in to the temptation to "help" him make a stronger bridge, two things would have been different -- #1, the end result bridge wouldn't have looked like this and #2, I don't believe he would have had that amazing gleam of pride when he finished.  In fact, I'm guessing that he might have followed my suggestion, found that it worked, then shrugged his shoulders and walked away because he would have assumed that my solution was the only "right" one.  What a tragic loss that would have been!  Instead, after he completed his first bridge, he continued working on that same structure for quite awhile, coming up with more ideas of ways to improve it.

May you all find an opportunity to observe play quietly in order to be amazed by what kids can do.

Sep 26, 2017

Wild Rumpus: Week 9, wrapping up the summer!

Our final Rumpus of the summer was.... wet.  Because.... of course.

Rather than showing you all of the different activities that happened today, let's focus on just one. 

Chalk + Water:

Rainwater dripped from the roof and was fun to collect in various containers--

There were several different techniques going on at once.  One technique involved smashing the chalk in a bucket of water:

 Wild Rumpus Week 9: Water + Chalk
The second technique involved rubbing the chalk on the ground until a pile of the wet chalk dust built up, then wiping a hand across to pick up the chalk and swirl it into the water.

Wild Rumpus Week 9: Water + Chalk
 The third technique (which was less about making colored water like the first two and more about making bright chalk drawings) involved dipping the chalk into water before drawing with it.

The last Rumpus of the summer wrapped up with some excellent puddle jumping.  See you all next summer!  (Don't forget to try out AnjiPlayDate, Wednesday mornings at the Lussier Community Education Center this fall through Nov. 13! 10:30 am -12:30 pm)

Aug 17, 2017

Wild Rumpus, week 8 (west side edition)

This week, the hole/tunnel sisters decided to dig troughs deep and long enough that they could lie down in them and then get buried in sand.

Not sure if you can tell, but these two guys were loping across the sand on all fours like lions, kicking up dust and having a great time.
 This was a really elaborate structure that involved adding water into the tubing.

 They spun the top in the sand so much that they drilled a hold and a flat spot on the top of the sand.  Plus, when they took their hands off the rim, the top still stayed more or less upright!
 This little guy was so careful about balancing his ladder on this top.
 When he reached the peak, he declared, "king of the mountain!"
 His friend mostly liked pouring dry sand out of his watering can onto the mountain.
 Check out these awesome cherry-topped cupcakes!
Speaking of elaborate constructions, there was a lot of exploration of connecting tubes, funnels and pouring sand down them today.

 Apparently, their invention was called a "Sand Transferer"

This was the first time I've seen a combo of pop-up tunnel plus AnjiPlay tunnel.
 There was some very fancy action going on with the tulle this week as well!

 Check out this wooden structure!
 And lots of exciting water play:

 The orange cube was explored
 mostly (interestingly) by toddlers!  This little girl with the pink shirt crawled up on top and said she wanted to get down but each time her mom helped her to get started going down, she just crawled right back up!
 She's "fishing!"

One little boy wrote out this name in blocks.  I asked him if that was his name.  
He said, "no, it's my imaginary friend." 
His dad asked, "who is your imaginary friend?" 
"he's an animal." 
"What kind of animal?" asked his mom.
 "He's a horse."  (this was all news to his parents.)
 Otis' friend's younger brother built a "firepit."

In the last half-hour or so of the program, one of the kiddos decided she wanted to build a treehouse.  You can see in the photos and videos below that she has amazing leadership skills.  She managed to get all of these kids happily cooperating together to build this structure using complex techniques like pulleys to get larger items up into the tree.  She said to one of the library staff, "I know how to get kids excited, 'cuz I'm a kid!" Must be true -- check out the play stories from multiple kids about their treehouse building experience!


Rumpus Tree House

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