Mamma's School

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Category: Nature Curriculum (Page 1 of 4)

Cool Candle Experiments.

I’ve never had a table looking so pretty, all set up for an afternoon of science experiments!!  We added a few (well, 10!) other candles as well to make it extra cosy 🙂 So this week is all about Candlemas, and the knowledge that with reaching the midpoint of winter, we are now on the way to Spring.  I will write more about this theme in our subject overview in a post later in the week, but for now, lets get talking about the cool candle experiments!

 

The first experiment, was to look at using heat as a source of power.  There are multiple DIY ways of setting this up along the same principles, but why bother when you have a very pretty, tinkly noise making angel construction that does the same job?!  We set it up and lit the candles.  Then we sat back and waited for the spinning angels above to gather momentum, and spin faster and faster.  We discussed the heat’s role in the result, and the fact it was providing energy.  We also took candles away to see what would happen, having tried to predict it first (it slowed down), and then put them back again, for it to get faster once more.

We then moved on to an experiment to look at what fire needs to burn.  We used 6 candles and 6 jars/glasses of varying size.  You can use as many or as few as you want  (I have three children, meaning they could do 2 each….need to think these things through to prevent even more arguments in the day!!).  We chatted about what fire needs to burn (fuel and oxygen), and what they thought would happen if we put the jars over the candle.  We then put one jar over one candle to demonstrate it going out after it had used the oxygen up in the jar.  Next, we lined the jars up, and decided which ones would allow the candle to burn for the least amount of time, through to the one that would allow it to burn for the longest.  This, in itself, was interesting for them to do, as it made them think about the capacity inside the jar, not just how tall or short it was.  I’d deliberately chosen tall thin jars, and short wide ones 🙂 I’m amazed to say, with much diplomatic discussion (that’s amazing in itself!) they came to the right conclusion, as we used a stop watch to time how long each candle took to go out.  They were very chuffed with themselves!

Next up was the thirsty candle experiment.  I placed a candle on a dish of water (we put food colouring in too, so it was more easy to see…..oh, and prettier!).  We then lit the candle.  Next we discussed what would happen if we placed a glass over the top, and could we get the candle to drink the water 😉  At this point all three thought I’d gone more than a little mad, so I showed them.  While the candle was alight, the warmer air in the jar took up more room.  However, once it had used the oxygen up and gone out, the candle sucked the water up into the inside of the jar…..well the science of the situation did!  As the air cooled, the air took up less space in the jar, so the air pressure inside the jar dropped, and drew in water from outside trying to equalise the pressure.  The children didn’t quite believe it the first attempt, so we repeated it quite a few times!

The last experiment certainly had the wow factor for them.  We lit a candle stood in a bowl of cold water, and held up by a lump of blue tac in the base.  We then left it to its own devices for a few hours.  On returning, what we found remaining, was a hollow tube of wax.  The water had absorbed the heat energy from the candle, so once that had dissipated into the water, it didn’t affect the outside of the candle anymore, which was then kept cool.

They loved today and we had lots of fun.  We hope you will give some of these a go, and enjoy trying them 🙂

cool candle experiments candle science www.mammasschool.co.uk

 

 

The Nature Curriculum we use is, “Exploring Nature with Children. A complete, year-long curriculum”. It is a beautifully written framework, written by Raising Little Shoots, and can be found over at https://raisinglittleshoots.com/ It suggests a topic for the week, and then provides some background information and suggestions for nature journaling and outdoor exploring. It also provides a comprehensive suggested reading list (fiction and non-fiction) for each week, plus a poem and a piece of art to study. There are extensions activity ideas too. We use the topic as the theme for our week, and follow the ideas for our journaling, and one fiction book. What we have been doing from the curriculum can be found on our curriculum overview post. The craft, science, maths, and English ideas we have researched ourselves to fit in with the theme 🙂 This makes a learning a lot more nature based.

 

Winter Pond Science Experiments.

Pond Melt:  We found this idea in our “Nature in a Nutshell” book.  We collected a sample of pond ice in a jam jar (that in itself was quite an achievement as it was very thick and hard to break a chunk off), then we brought it back home to melt.  It was then ready to examine for life, to see if anything lived in it during the winter.  All we could find in our ice was algae under the microscope (we were using a pond life identification kit page from www.microscopy-uk.org.uk).  It was still interesting for them to see though.

Examining pond water:  The next exhibit was a sample of pond water collected in a jar.  In here we saw lots of tiny little brown organisms swimming around madly.  The children used their magnifying glasses to get a closer look and loved watching them.

Purifying water:  I gave the children some soil to mix into a jug of water.  I then gave them a plastic bottle with the top cut off and inserted as a funnel.  I lay next to that small stones, cotton wool pads, and coffee filters.  I then gave them the task of making the water clear.  With big sister’s advice and instruction they put the coffee filter in first, then the cotton wool pads, then the small stones.  This meant that she’d chosen to filter substances out in quite a logical order  We did get much clearer water out the other end, so I wasn’t brave enough to recommend drinking it!

The story of our pond:  We laid out various items to use in our story: flour to act as waste from a factory, soil to resemble a result of deforestation, food colouring for chemicals we put onto crops, shampoo for the soaps we use to clean ourselves, oil for vehicle and cooking waste, and raisins for human and pet waste).  We then made up a story of a pond in an uninhabited area, which then gradually became a built up area, and all these waste products ended up in the water.  As we told the story we put them into our clean bowl of water.  The children were horrified with the result, and it really made them think of man’s impact on the environment.

Microscope work:  Our little lady whiled away an hour, happily making up slides and looking at pond water and pond water plants.  She also digressed which is always good with any learning!!  She started pipetting water onto the stems, revisiting the concept of surface tension.  She then decided to slice the reeds apart length ways, discovering the various tubes inside.  We then had a brief conversation about xylems and phloems.

 

Why don’t frogs freeze?:  The last experiment was to do with finding out why frogs can survive the freezing temperatures of a pond in winter.  We took 2 containers, and put water in one and syrup in the other.  We also marked the level at which the fluid was at.  We then put them into the freezer overnight.  On removing them in the morning, the water was frozen, and had expanded (to a higher level in the cup), but the syrup was still a liquid.  Our blood is represented by the water.  Ice crystals form, making the fluid expand, which would then damage any cells and they would die (so would we).  The syrup represents the frog’s blood.  Some animals like frogs make glucose in the liver and then send it via their blood to their body’s tissues.  This doesn’t freeze, and the frogs are fine 🙂

 

Winter pond science experiments pond science www.mammasschool.co.uk

 

The Nature Curriculum we use is, “Exploring Nature with Children. A complete, year-long curriculum”. It is a beautifully written framework, written by Raising Little Shoots, and can be found over at https://raisinglittleshoots.com/ It suggests a topic for the week, and then provides some background information and suggestions for nature journaling and outdoor exploring. It also provides a comprehensive suggested reading list (fiction and non-fiction) for each week, plus a poem and a piece of art to study. There are extensions activity ideas too. We use the topic as the theme for our week, and follow the ideas for our journaling, and one fiction book. What we have been doing from the curriculum can be found on our curriculum overview post. The craft, science, maths, and English ideas we have researched ourselves to fit in with the theme 🙂 This makes a learning a lot more nature based.

 

Nature Curriculum Week 19 – Winter Ponds.

This week’s theme is Winter Ponds.  Having visited our pond area the other day, today we settled down to draw what we had seen.  We kicked off with a bit of face painting .  I’m not sure they fully grasped the idea though 🙂  We had a dragonfly (possible but later in the year), a fish (a slightly too tropical species, but at least we do get fish in ponds), and a shark…eeeerrrrrmmm…..

We decided to have a little change of idea with our nature journals this week.  We thought we would sketch in charcoal and pastel chalks to change style a bit.  Mini man no.2 wasn’t up for this at all today, so we left him happily immersed in play people.  We made swatches of colour that the area seemed to be in the winter (greys, dark greens, and browns), and drawings of our reeds (2 types, marginal plants and emergent plants).  We did also draw a swan.  Now, we don’t have any wild fowl on our pond, but lots do, and our coastal waters surrounding the island are home to many, many swans.  We thought it would be nice to include one in our drawings as we see them every day.

Our book for the week is “By Pond and River” by Arabella Buckley.  In this book children are introduced to the plant and animal life around ponds and rivers.  We are reading a chapter a day; frogs, dragonflies, fish, waterbugs, waterbirds, otters, and voles are included.  Our poem was a rather jolly one called “A Sledding Song” by Norman C Schlichter, and the piece of art we looked at was “Pond Pass” by Neil Welliver.

 

We enjoyed experimenting with our charcoal and blending our pastels together.  We find that both of them are a lot more forgiving to draw with (the result looks better than it actually is!).  Make sure you keep an eye on the blog to see what winter pond maths, English, science, and craft we have been up to 🙂

 

The Nature Curriculum we use is, “Exploring Nature with Children. A complete, year-long curriculum”. It is a beautifully written framework, written by Raising Little Shoots, and can be found over at https://raisinglittleshoots.com/ It suggests a topic for the week, and then provides some background information and suggestions for nature journaling and outdoor exploring. It also provides a comprehensive suggested reading list (fiction and non-fiction) for each week, plus a poem and a piece of art to study. There are extensions activity ideas too. We use the topic as the theme for our week, and follow the ideas for our journaling, and one fiction book. What we have been doing from the curriculum can be found on our curriculum overview post. The craft, science, maths, and English ideas we have researched ourselves to fit in with the theme 🙂 This makes a learning a lot more nature based.

Pond Dipping

The Nature Curriculum theme for the week is Winter Ponds.  It is suggested we revisit our autumn pond, but as we’d just emigrated and so didn’t have one, I’ve found us a new pond.  This is quite an exciting find.  We live on a small island, and I originally didn’t think there were any ponds nearby.  However, I found one small one hidden in the woods, and I think we are going to enjoy investigating this one.

We had to work round the edges of the thick ice to manage any scooping into the water, but we did get some scoops done.  Our pond dipping tray shows hundreds of tiny light brown, almost transparent, tadpole shaped (but much much smaller) organisms buzzing around in there.  The trio were very excited as they didn’t expect to get anything.  They thought there might be life under the ice, but it was too solid to get through it.  We chatted about the plants around a pond.  The marginal plants (around the edge and in the marshy areas), the emergent plants (growing in the shallower areas), the submerged plants (with floating leaves), and the totally submerged plants.  We managed to get samples of marginal and emergent plants to study more closely at home, but no luck getting anything from the actual pond today.

We also got a water sample in a jam jar to study at home.  It is a good sample, with hundreds of the little brown tadpole shaped organisms swimming in there.  Once the three children learnt to stare at a spot of water and be patient and keep staring there, then they could see them all moving, otherwise it appears there is nothing in there as they are so small.  We also got samples of the pond ice to bring home for a science experiment later in the week.

The children also trialled their view finders which they made in the pond craft session (post out later in the week).  They were not very effective as there was only 1 cm of water and then thick ice under that.  They had fun though, and understood the principle of them, and maybe we will have more luck when the ice melts.

 

 

 

We were so pleased that we had found a local pond that we could now watch as the seasons change.  The mini men enjoyed trying to smash the pond ice (which they didn’t succeed at, but it kept them busy while our lady was busy retrieving organisms to examine!)  They did some crafting there too (have a read of the pond craft blog, out later in the week, to see what they did by the pond), and we had a warming winter snack cooked by our Kelly Kettle (post out later in the outdoor cooking treats category).  As usual, the time that we had allotted came and went, and we spent much longer than we had intended there, but I love that when it happens….especially as mini man no.2 wasn’t keen on coming out at all this afternoon.  It means everyone has enjoyed their experience and their time in nature and the outdoors 🙂

 

Country Kids

The Nature Curriculum we use is, “Exploring Nature with Children. A complete, year-long curriculum”. It is a beautifully written framework, written by Raising Little Shoots, and can be found over at https://raisinglittleshoots.com/ It suggests a topic for the week, and then provides some background information and suggestions for nature journaling and outdoor exploring. It also provides a comprehensive suggested reading list (fiction and non-fiction) for each week, plus a poem and a piece of art to study. There are extensions activity ideas too. We use the topic as the theme for our week, and follow the ideas for our journaling, and one fiction book. What we have been doing from the curriculum can be found on our curriculum overview post. The craft, science, maths, and English ideas we have researched ourselves to fit in with the theme 🙂 This makes a learning a lot more nature based.

Winter Tree Science.

If you want to keep three children quiet for around 2 hours, give them a microscope, knife, and some buds 🙂  They were under some sort of hypnotising spell.  Little lady went into full on teacher mode, and got the mini men chopping and looking too.  She loved gently removing the protective bud scales to reveal the bud underneath, and then chopping a cross section to see what the inside is like.  She viewed and dissected a variety of buds, and her little brothers dipped in and out of the activity, but it’s fair to say, she was amazed by what she discovered in there.

The experiment we did was with pine cones.  We are lucky, as the country we live in has a huge variety and abundance of these!  I am not going to spoil the results in case you want to try this at home.  What you need to do is place one in cold water, one in warm water, and one in air.  Then you should have a good comparison.  There are a lot more variations you can do, and as you can see, we had one half in and half out….let the child lead, they always have the best ideas!!  We also set ours up using a variety of different types to see if there was any difference between tree species too.

 

Winter Tree Craft – Nature Weaving, Finger Painting, Journey Sticks, and Decorating Sticks.

The first of our activities, that we chose for this week’s nature art and craft, was nature weaving.  We had collected three Y shaped sticks and wound string around the V part; wind it round one branch, pull it across, and then wind it round the other, then pull it back across, and so on, until you have horizontal lines going up the V part.  We had then collected various items from the garden to weave through them.  Unfortunately at this time of year we are rather limited in the freezing cold with what we can collect, so evergreen supple branches had to do!  The children wove them over and under each horizontal thread, and then added the next one parallel to it.  At the end they tucked in brightly coloured craft feathers and tin foil to add a splash of colour!


The next idea we decided to do straight into the journals so we could keep it.  A winter tree would ideally be done on coloured paper, so it could be left bare, and use white paint thumbprints to create snow around and on it.  However, we lack white paint, and the paper in our books is white!  So, plan B was put into action, and brightly coloured leaves were added 🙂  The children painted their arms and hands and printed them into the books.  The arms became the trunks, and the fingers the branches.  I love it now when mini man no.2 does things like this (and enthusiastically as well) as there was a time when he wouldn’t even go near paint, as just the thought of getting it on him would cause a melt down….but persistence has paid off and he can now enjoy the use of it.  Next they did thumbprints or fingerprints for the leaves, and I love how they turned out.  

The third craft was an outdoor one.  A journey stick is a collection of items from a nature based walk that is then a memento of your trip 🙂  Be sure to remind the little people that they mustn’t disturb nature, so try and pick up things already on the ground.

You chose a suitable stick (chunky enough to be sturdy but not so big they can’t walk with it!), and wrap some string around it in continuous loops (these will be used to slot your items into).  We used purple sparkly wool….obviously everything must be sparkly!!  Our little lady is pictured slotting some undergrowth into her stick, whereas the mini men…..well, they had a sword fight!!  (They did end up getting a few pieces after the sword fighting and flag waving was out of the way!).  We decided as we did it, this would be an interesting thing to do every season, and then compare our photos.  Today, it was pine cones, berries, small pine needle branches (a few variations), mosses, and lichen.  So mainly greeny, brown.  Here is her finished result.

Our last craft was a very calming one (and boy we need these periods slotted into our days, as the trio are very full on, fast, and noisy!!).  We did stick decorating.  Each little person had a stick and some brightly coloured wool, and then they wound the wool round the stick to make blocks of colour.  This can be done as an outdoor activity, but the cold temperatures here make little fingers lose their dexterity, so today we did it indoors, after our nature walk and journey stick making.

Week 18 Nature Curriculum – Winter Trees.

This week’s nature curriculum topic is Winter Trees.  They have provided many a gorgeous back drop to my sunrise and sunset photos so far, as we arrived in Sweden late autumn, and have yet to see them bloom.  Trees are lovely in winter too, framing the sky, and allowing us to really see their true shape, naked of leaves.  However, there is also a lot going on with them.  We tend to think of them being dormant, having lost their beautiful array of rainbow coloured leaves in the autumn, but they are very busy growing new life for when the warmer springtime comes 🙂  We took a brief walk round our rather large garden, and checked out a vast number of bushes and trees, all of which were prolific with buds.  These buds contain baby leaves and flowers.  The ones we pruned to sketch into our nature journals, are now stood in some water so we can see which buds burst out first (axillary or terminal), and which have flowers and which have leaves.  The mini men’s journals aren’t pictured today as they just made a few markings in their books and were off, far too busy to do much after having a chat and listening to the story and poem!!  My little lady and I sketched away, making notes and learning about opposite buds, alternate buds, whorled buds, nodes, and leaf scars.  I think we were both surprised by the intricate patterns on the buds, and the variety of patterns.

The suggested reading for the theme was “Once There Was a Tree” by Natalia Romanova.  This is a beautiful story that catalogues how life works.  Once the tree is damaged and chopped down into a stump, it is still an important asset for the surrounding nature. Each living creature that occupies it for a short while alters it, making it perfect for the next type of visitor.  This goes on through a few living creatures requiring the use of it until eventually a new tree grows out of it.  It also underlines though, that although these creatures feel it is their own tree during their transient occupation of it, it does in fact belong to everyone, as it belongs to the earth, and that belongs to all 🙂  A lovely story, especially for the mini men to see how everything goes round in a circle.  The poem was “Trees” by Sara Coleridge.

We have been doing our extension activities which include, tree maths, tree English, and tree art and craft, but check out my other blog posts on these topics and for ideas 🙂

The Nature Curriculum we use is, “Exploring Nature with Children. A complete, year-long curriculum”. It is a beautifully written framework, written by Raising Little Shoots, and can be found over at https://raisinglittleshoots.com/It suggests a topic for the week, and then provides some background information and suggestions for nature journaling and outdoor exploring. It also provides a comprehensive suggested reading list (fiction and non-fiction) for each week, plus a poem and a piece of art to study. There are extensions activity ideas too. We use the topic as the theme for our week, and follow the ideas for our journaling, and one fiction book. What we have been doing from the curriculum can be found on our curriculum overview post. The craft, science, maths, and English ideas we have researched ourselves to fit in with the theme 🙂 This makes a learning a lot more nature based.

Week 17 Nature Curriculum – The Moon

This is one of the hardest things to get a good photo of, and mine certainly do not do it justice!  We’ve had a lot of fun though learning about the moon, even if we haven’t been able to see it for half the week due to heavy low cloud.  Today’s session was kicked off by learning about the moon’s phases, and understanding waxing, waning, crescent, and gibbous.  We chatted about the phases and what was happening and what we could see in the sky.

 

The discussion then moved onto the full moon types throughout the year.  We looked and learnt about the full moon names throughout the year. To help us look into this, we had the most gorgeous moon phases poster from wilder child.  You can take a look over on her website at http://wilderchild.com/2017-full-moon-dates-calendar/ or the home page http://wilderchild.com/ you can download a printable version, and my three have loved theirs.  We have stuck them into their nature journals (and one for me too of course!).  We then drew our own versions of the moon’s monthly phases into the journals as well.  The mini men are really starting to get into their drawing in their journals now.  Mini man no.2 was drawing large craters in his, and then a crescent moon (complete with a man fishing on it!!), and mini man no.1 drew a huge moon, with a worm on it ( for March’s full worm moon), plus craters, space rocket, space car, meteors, and people looking up at the moon!  Quite a lot of detail for my little men.

After we had completed those, next came the tasty moon study part.  We did the phases of the moon by Oreo biscuits!!  Needless to say this went down very well (not so well the part where they couldn’t eat it until they had showed Dadda later!).

Before we headed out to chase down the moon, we snuggled up for our poem (The Moon by Robert Louis Stevenson), and our books for the week.  The suggested reading was “Papa, Please Get the Moon for Me” by Eric Carle, and we added Moomin and the Moonlight Adventures to it 🙂

 

They have really enjoyed looking at this topic this week, and it has really caught their imagination.  The mini men especially are asking lots of space/astronomy related questions, and it is lovely to ignite their curiosity and their passion for learning (and see some fruits from your labour as a parent!!!).  For the rest of the month we are continuing to do a moon journal….everyday we shade in a circle to show the amount of moon we can see lit up by the sun, and do the shading on the correct side of the circle too.  By the end of the month we should be able to look back and see the waning (as we started with nearly a full moon) and the waxing of the moon pattern.

The Nature Curriculum we use is, “Exploring Nature with Children. A complete, year-long curriculum”. It is a beautifully written framework, written by Raising Little Shoots, and can be found over at https://raisinglittleshoots.com/It suggests a topic for the week, and then provides some background information and suggestions for nature journaling and outdoor exploring. It also provides a comprehensive suggested reading list (fiction and non-fiction) for each week, plus a poem and a piece of art to study. There are extensions activity ideas too. We use the topic as the theme for our week, and follow the ideas for our journaling, and one fiction book. What we have been doing from the curriculum can be found on our curriculum overview post. The craft, science, maths, and English ideas we have researched ourselves to fit in with the theme 🙂 This makes a learning a lot more nature based.

Week 16 Nature Curriculum – The Winter Sky

What a fantastic week we’ve just had to study this subject.  When the temperatures stay well below zero all week, and you get bright winter skies so that you can see spectacular sunrises and sunsets, mixed with howling icy winds, plus snow flurries, you can feel you are truly experiencing winter.  For the nature journal activity this week we sketched a picture of the winter sky, choosing to depict a sunrise we had seen on our picnic.  We also wrote factual information about the sunrise such as time, date, place, temperature, and the weather conditions.

 

We didn’t need any encouragement to snuggle up together with this week’s suggested story, “The Story of the Snow Children” by Sibyl Von Olfers.  However, we added a few of our own stories into the reading session too.  We have our lovely “Moomin and the Winter Snow” that we felt was very appropriate with the snow falling all day outside, and then we have a lovely “Children’s Atlas of Weather” as well.  We didn’t read all of this (a bit heavy for the twins!), but we read and chatted about what was relevant to this week’s topic.  The pictures were really good as they kept the twins interested in the subject even when they didn’t quite get what the little lady and I were talking about.  We read 2 poems.  The first one was the suggested poem “A Winter Dawn” by Lucy Maud Montgomery, and the second one was “January” by Elsa Beskow, as it was our first week doing the nature curriculum in January.

The extension activities for the week were really good, especially for our little lady’s maths skills.  We needed to make a very basic rain catcher, measure the rain, and then make a bar chart to show the rainfall at the same time each day.  It wasn’t really a very rainy week, but we did get some!  The other graph we did was measuring the temperature at 8am every morning and plotting this onto a line graph.  Our little lady was learning about minus and plus temperatures, as well as how to plot them onto a graph.  She really enjoyed making these graphs.  Our rain catcher had to be wedged on top of our well between the handle on the lid and a brick so it didn’t blow off in the high winds we were having all week, but so that it was still accessible for any rain! So this week, not only has she learnt to plot and draw 2 different styles of graphs, but she has also learnt about labelling, adding units of measurements and scale, and plotting onto them.

The little lady also wrote a poem about the winter as one of her extension activities.  This is something she finds quite difficult, so I am really pleased that she tried, and then put it into her nature journal with some illustrations 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

The Nature Curriculum we use is, “Exploring Nature with Children. A complete, year-long curriculum”. It is a beautifully written framework, written by Raising Little Shoots, and can be found over at https://raisinglittleshoots.com/It suggests a topic for the week, and then provides some background information and suggestions for nature journaling and outdoor exploring. It also provides a comprehensive suggested reading list (fiction and non-fiction) for each week, plus a poem and a piece of art to study. There are extensions activity ideas too. We use the topic as the theme for our week, and follow the ideas for our journaling, and one fiction book. What we have been doing from the curriculum can be found on our curriculum overview post. The craft, science, maths, and English ideas we have researched ourselves to fit in with the theme 🙂 This makes a learning a lot more nature based.

Sunrise Picnics and Sunset Views.

This morning, as part of our nature curriculum extension activities, we had planned to watch the sunrise and eat a breakfast picnic whilst doing it.  What we hadn’t planned was the -9 degree temperature plus strong winds (making it very bitter), and high tides and flooding (making our lovely jetty spots a no go for sitting on as they were all under the water!).  I think we made the most of it though.  We wrapped up in all our layers, we took heated pain au chocolats and hot chocolate with us, and we sat on roll mats, inside sleeping bags 🙂  We just about managed 25 minutes!!  It was lovely though.  We timed it perfectly just getting settled as the sun started to peep over, and the trio munched happily until the sun had risen well.  By then their hands were numb (with ski gloves on), their smiles frozen fixed in place, and there was a slight whimpering wish to clamber back into the car!!!  Our southern end of the country is a lot warmer than the rest of the country, but we moved here to experience four seasons in their entirety and I feel we are getting the chance to do that.  

The plan for suppertime was to have a sunset picnic, but we decided with the sun setting and the temperature having not risen any higher all day, one meal outside was probably enough, and 2 might be pushing it….especially trying to eat pasta off a fork with ski gloves on!  So, we just went to enjoy the spectacle instead 🙂  We weren’t disappointed, with the sea freezing now and the ice creeping further from the shore, it was really lovely to look at, and very wintry!

These last three photos, show birds flocking together.  However, we were just too far away to get a good photo, and when they were doing their best aerial stunts, the camera couldn’t pick them out as they blended into the dark background of rocks and trees.  It was mesmerising to watch though, and now we know they do this at dusk in this spot, we might head back again, this time making sure we are closer in time for dusk 🙂

 

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