It’s still pretty white around here. With warming temperatures come the wet and muddy conditions that define Vermont’s mud season. Here are some things we’re doing to remind us that the flowers and fresh green leaves of spring will be coming soon:
Tissue Paper Flowers: I followed the basic instructions found here, simplifying it by instructing the kids to use just four pieces of tissue paper. They came out great and could be made by our wide range of students!
Make a Signs of Spring List: Post a large piece of paper in your classroom or at home. When you play outside, keep an eye out for signs that spring is on it’s way!
Forcing Spring Branches: All you need to do is clip branches and put them in a vase filled with fresh water. Change water regularly, as you would for cut flowers. Blooming branches, like forsythia, are great for forcing. At indoor temperatures, your branches’ buds will open into new leaves and flowers. We clip the bright red branches of dogwood now for a beautiful table arrangement at Easter.
Start Seeds: Even if you don’t have a garden, starting seeds can be a fun spring activity. All you need is a container with a hole poked in the bottom, potting soil, seeds of your choice, and some sort of dish for your container to sit in. Grow lights or windows with strong southern sun will make for stronger seedlings that will do better if transplanted into your garden. Plants like peas, lettuce, spinach, and herbs can be eaten as sprouts or “micro greens,” making this project rewarding in as little as 30 days!
Play in the Mud: Yes, the extra laundry is worth it. All sorts of learning, experimentation, engineering, and play can happen in the mud. We’re still wearing our winter outdoor clothes up here in Vermont. As temperatures rise, rain pants, rain boots, and rain coats will help keep indoor clothes clean and dry. Hosing everyone off before coming inside can help keep that mud outside.