Winter brings with it the warm scents of sage and thyme in the kitchen, wool sweaters and comforting blankets with a weight that feels like a welcome embrace. The world sparkles as if the ground has been dusted with thousands of tiny, perfect jewels.
There is magic in this season when all the plants slumber and the trees reach bare branches to the silvery sky. You can see it in the first snowfall as children rush to the window to press eager little hands and faces to the glass, there is a cold and glimmering beauty that whispers of Christmas and fairies and wonder.
This is the time for snowmen, twinkling lights, and sugar cookies with icing that shines like polished glass gems. A wondrous season to be small and still so full of awe at the little miracles in the world.
In our little school we joyfully follow the rhythms of the seasons because there is beauty to each of them. In winter we observe the bare but lovely tree branches decorated with intricate frozen crystals and discover pieces of ice atop puddles that look as clear and lovely as gemstones. We also prepare strings of delicious treats for the little creatures that share our play yard because I believe it is so important to teach the little people to love even the tiniest living beings.
As the days shorten and the nights grow longer we celebrate the Solstice with lanterns and dehydrate orange slices to hang in the window to catch the sunlight.
In these little celebrations and traditions we are cradled in the same circle as our ancestors, travelling familiar paths into the next season together as a learning community.
How do you embrace the changing seasons in your programs?