By Kelli Gile, Walnut Valley Unified
Evergreen Elementary kindergarten students celebrated Earth Day during a spring program held April 25. Families gathered in the amphitheater as the children sang about the land and sea and springtime blossoms.
They performed This Land is Your Land, Magic Penny, Baby Beluga, Everything Grows, Springtime Magic, and We All Live Together. Teacher Mona Warren happily strummed her guitar behind the children during the Octopus song.
“Kindergarteners, you did an awesome job today,” said Principal Carolyn Wills.
“Parents you will be hearing a lot more about S.T.E.A.M – Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math. And here at Evergreen, it starts with our kindergarteners!”
After the music, several Common Core activities were held in the kindergarten play yard. Families posed for a “ Jaws” keepsake photo and estimated the length of a blue whale with yarn, rulers, and wrapping paper tubes.
The head of the giant 100’ mammal was drawn on the playground with chalk, and families with their kindergarten students had to use assorted tools provided to solve the challenge of “How far would this 100 foot whale reach? How could we measure it with the tools we have?”
Austin Teng, age 6, promised to recycle and pick up trash to help the Earth. Teacher Sam Li gave a science lesson during the Float or Sink Jellyfish demonstration. The children placed plastic jellyfish into liter-sized water bottles and learned they floated because oxygen is lighter than the water!
Inside classrooms, families worked together to fill in an attribute chart of student created artwork in categories such as vertebrates, invertebrates, and many other terms that showed how much they had learned. They also worked together on an ABC Earth Day word search and make pledges to take care of Mother Earth. Sophia Tian said she would ride bicycle to take care of the Earth.
Earth Day was also celebrated with creative artwork. Recycled art pieces were on display outside classrooms and recycling pledges framed the playground. Students created a replica of themself as an Earth Kid, holding the planet and creating a personal pledge of how they can take care of our Earth.
“Our dedicated kindergarten teachers, Mona Warren, Kathy Riddle, Melody Fernandez, Julie Jeon, and Sam Li completely revamped the kindergarten spring program to create experiences that foster creativity, critical thinking, and collaboration.
This is an excellent example of the new Common Core State Standards and STEAM instruction that our students need to be successful in college, career and beyond!” said Principal Carolyn Wills.