Featured Project: Bird Nests

Toddler D students enjoyed a bird exploration with Ms. Erin during the “What Makes a Bird a Bird” project after learning about different forest animals. The class discussed the physical and anatomical properties of these animals and completed various projects to enhance their understanding. The class told Ms. Erin that birds have wings, feathers and beaks. “Where do birds live?” This question raised excitement and a variety of answers—“The sky.”, “High in the trees.” and finally, “Birds live in nests!”

Screen Shot 2015-06-15 at 2.25.13 PM

The students were enthusiastic to tell Ms. Erin about the nests they’ve seen as they began a closer investigation of birds. The children continued to expand their concept of how birds build nests and what nests are made of.

As an activity for this project, students created their very own bird nests by using sticks, paper, string and a cardboard box. The class began ripping paper and string into little pieces to start constructing their bird nests. The students decided they would also need glue to make sure the materials used for the nest would stick together. This activity sparked imagination and inspired discovery for the next week as the students added to their homemade nests. The bird nest project was a huge success!

The children were enthusiastic and enjoyed learning through this experimental and hands-on educational activity. The class was proud of their hard work on the nests for their “birdie friends.” As the Toddler D class continues to explore birds and their habitats, students are engaging in vocabulary expansion and increasing understanding for future projects. Ms. Erin’s class will continue to learn more about birds focusing the students’ attention on the eggs inside of the nest.

Featured Teacher: Erin Mitchell – Toddler-D Head Teacher and Coordinator

Screen Shot 2014-09-12 at 2.41.47 PMFrom Toledo, Ohio with a degree in human development and family studies, Ms. Erin believes that hands-on learning, even in the earliest stages of life, is an important part of the classroom. “The children are encouraged to explore with a variety of materials and it is so exciting to watch them grow and learn to use the different materials in so many different ways,” says Ms. Erin.

The kind and loving atmosphere that is encompassed at CDC is what initially inspired Ms. Erin to join the team. “I noticed that CDC genuinely cares for the education of each child, and I wanted to be a part of the team.”

After living in Charleston for two years, Ms. Erin has reveled in the opportunity to help share the Reggio Philosophy with Lowcountry families. “I really admire the Reggio Emilia philosophy’s perspective of the child being the author of their own learning. The philosophy focuses on the child’s ability and allows the child to be very active in the learning process rather than merely acting as a sponge.”

When not working at CDC, Ms. Erin enjoys running outdoors, exploring the Charleston beaches, listening to music and playing the ukulele. Most of all, Ms. Erin enjoys reading and shares this hobby with the students in the classroom. “The toddlers are at such a fun age and seem to really enjoy storytelling. I love being animated and seeing the children’s reaction to certain events and hearing the questions they come up with to each story I read.”

Ms. Erin believes that it’s important to “be someone you want to be around”, and to always try to have a good attitude.