River Crossing Challenge

Hammers are pounding in the woodworking and tool area, and to expand on our topic, a building challenge was issued to the Firefly Class. We read a Going on a Bear Hunt by Micheal Rosen and Helen Oxenbury:

“A father and his four children...go on the traditional bear hunt based on the old camp chant: "We're going to catch a big one. / What a beautiful day! / We're not scared. / Oh-oh! Grass! / Long, wavy grass. / We can't go over it. / We can't go under it. / Oh, no! / We've got to go through it!" The family skids down a grassy slope, swishes across a river, sludges through mud and, of course, finally sees the bear, who chases them all back to their home.” http://www.amazon.com/dp/0689853491

The Fireflies enjoyed the chant and accompanying actions in this classic book. After a spirited reading at circle time, the River Crossing Challenge was presented to the children. Build a structure OVER the water for the family to cross without getting wet! The children were paired in small groups and given a bag with ribbons to represent the river, popsicle sticks, a foam roller, cotton balls, a block, bubble wrap, straws, masking tape and scissors to construct a contraption. This activity demanded teamwork, communication, creative thinking, compromise, and engineering skills. Show the pictures to your child as a conversation starter about this activity...