The Finale

Friday was our final day in our imaginary worlds and it was an excellent day!  The kids worked together to figure out a way to jump from “Sproutville,” the world they all lived in with me all week, to their realms.  IMG_0643

As our kiddos summed up their reading and collaborated on their own presentations, some of them decided to create transports into each other’s realms and that the overall world that we live in is called, Sproutville!  We had each of the children share their worlds with their families and caregivers at the end of the day.

Culminating Activity

Today was a terrific day as the Sprout group began to pull all of their ideas together and present their imaginary worlds.  The students painted masks, finished landmarks, began stories, and created dioramas.  One student finished today!

In reading groups, both focused back on the setting and the characters in their books.  Some kiddos finished reading The Phantom Tollbooth and have chosen another fantasy fiction.  We also had a group read the book Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs. We compared it the movie too.


Wednesday in Sprout, the kiddos made a DIY air dry polymer clay mix using cornstarch, glue, and baby oil.  The Sprouters are using this clay to make landmarks for their imaginary realms.  Some have decided their landmark will be the portal to enter their world, others are creating statues and one kiddo is making a natural springs landmark.  Their ideas are really flourishing!

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In the Phantom Tollbooth reading group, the kiddos have been keeping track of idioms, imagery and interesting vocabulary.  One Sprouter wanted to add all the words to our interesting vocabulary chart because she thinks, “all words are interesting!”

In the second reading group, we read Roxaboxen.  In this story, we read about a group of kids that created an imaginary land near their home.  They met there summer after summer and created their own money system, town hall, and even created a war!  We really loved it.  Then each kiddo wrote down and illustrated the things they liked about the Roxaboxen world!


Today in Sprout, the Sprouters worked with a homemade paper-mache recipe of flour and water.  They got really messy and had a lot of fun! 🙂


Our focus today was to think about and begin developing the characters that would live in our imaginary realms.  This will help us as we continue to explore our books and learn more about other worlds.

In The Phantom Tollbooth Group, the Sprout kiddos read about Milo’s journey through the land of Dictionopolis where he encountered a Dog named Tock.  There will be more personified characters to come!

In the book, Weslandia, the Sprout kiddos heard about a boy named Wesley is a lot like Milo, he is looking for something to fill his summer vacation, so he invents his own new world in his own backyard.  Here he makes a new crop and uses the crop for many things including dishes, clothing and much more.  He involves the kids from the community and no longer feels like an outcast.  Through this book, the students took note of interesting vocabulary words and lots of imagery!


What a wonderful day we had today!  We ended the day outside – talking and playing.

Week Two – Imaginary Realms

IMG_0566downloadMonday – Today in Sprout, the Sprouters were introduced to our theme of the week: Imaginary Realms!  We have two literature circles going: one group is reading The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster and the other group is exploring picture books that align with our theme.  Today’s book was Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak.  Both groups were very excited to receive journals to take notes, answer questions, and make predictions about the text.


Today the group explored mapping skills.  We looked at real maps for the whole world, smaller maps of states, even smaller maps of cities, and then of neighborhoods.  We then created a list of items that we saw on several of the maps including a rose compass, a key, a distance scale, and a title.  We observed the way different landforms are shown on a map and how those are incorporated into the map.  Then we looked at maps from other realms.  We saw how almost picturesque these maps were and how they outlined many important landmarks in the world.

Then everyone set off to create their own world beginning with a map.  Who would be in this world? What landmarks would there be?  What landforms would be included?  The results were amazing (as always)!  We have a land of princess filled with castles and bridges.  We have a circular land, a land in the air, a land for 6 legged creatures, and so much more.  Within each map the Sprouters were asked to add the elements from a real map: key, scale, title and compass (some chose to change the names of the directions, so you will not see the traditional north, south, east, and west).

Last Day of Week One

Today was an awesome day inspired by a STEM challenge: creating a waterslide!  The kids did a great job.  We all worked together to make a water slide fit for a Lego guy:)

We said goodbye to some of Sprout friends.  But next week starts Sprout camp week two!


Sprout Summer – Day Four

Today we combined our love for art with our love for math!  First, we started the day looking at a variety of polygon shapes.  We measured their sides and their angles using rulers and protractors.  Then we looked at a few books that showed us the difference between convex polygons and concave polygons.  Finally, we used tape to make straight lines that intersected at different angles to make a plethora of polygons.  I think the biggest we had was a 13-gon (triskaidecagon or tridecagon)! Then we found polygons with the same number of sides and painted those one color, found other polygons with the same number of sides and painted those another color, and so on and so forth. Finally, once the paint was fairly dry, we peeled the tape off to reveal a really cool piece of art!

During our project, we were inspired by some music!  Per one student’s request, we listened to Lindsey Stirling and we were entertained with lots of singing and dancing!

After our painting project, we enjoyed a snack and listened to a book about Leonardo Fibonacci.  The kids loved hearing how he came upon his pattern of numbers and we were even inspired to look through nature around us to find a Fibonacci number.

Finally, we came back inside to make a Fibonacci spiral.  I hope the kids will have time to color them at home and share the information we learned today.

Sprout Summer – Day Three

Today in Sprout, the kids learned about solar energy and created a solar paneled oven.  We used pizza boxes, aluminum foil, plastic wrap, and paper towels for insulation.  Once the boxes were constructed, we took a walk over to Winnemac Park and set them up in the sun (although it was a partly cloudy day).  Then the kids went on a scavenger hunt for things found in nature, while they waited for their s’mores to cook!  They collected things from nature and tomorrow (crossing our fingers there is sun, we will make solar print collages.)  Even though the plans changed a little bit and the activity wasn’t exactly what we were hoping for, because of the lack of sun, the kids enjoyed the day and learned more about how the sun creates energy.

Sprout Camp Day One

IMG_0443Treasure Hunt – Ice Cream in a Bag – Lanyard and so much more!

Our first day of Sprout camp began with a treasure hunt.  This allowed the kiddos to work together and get to know each other.  They learned to take turns, decode, communicate, observe, and be patient.  Once they found the treasure, they had to decipher a four digit code to unlock the box and find a treasure of milk, ice and salt…SAY WHAT??? ” Ms. Wahl, I thought there was treasure in here for us?”  “Ahh, but there is you just need to put it all together!”  The children added their milk concoctions to the ice and salt and shook like crazy.  The salt lowered the freezing point of the ice and created an extra-cold brine that absorbs heat from the milk mixture, causing the mixture to freeze.  The shaking created smoother ice cream by breaking up large ice crystals and allowing the ice cream to freeze uniformly.

Some started with a good mixture but it quickly melted… patience again was virtue today!  But all in all, the ice cream in a bag was yummy!!!

The kids enjoyed time at the Winnemac playground then we headed back where Sofia taught the kiddos to tie lanyard.