Plants, trees and forests

This week, Early Stage 1 and Stage 1 classes are investigating the topic of “Trees” (and “forests”), and relating it back to the fairytales of Hansel and Gretel and Goldilocks, and to previous work on “Autumn” leaves.

Books to be used include Seed to plant by Melvin & Gilda Berger and Trees (Go facts plants series) by Paul McEvoy.

Supporting Youtube video clips will include:

Planting bean seeds

Time-lapse phaseolus runner bean. Hypogeal germination

Acorn to oak filmed over an 8 month period time-lapse

The 2013 CBCA Crichton Award nominee, “A forest” by Marc Martin, will also be a useful resource for this topic. I recently found the following clip on Youtube which carries similar environmental messages. It is an animated short by Aspen Center for Environmental Studies “exploring how forests affect, and are affected by, the forces around them”:

What’s happening in our forest?

‘Allo Vera


‘Allo Vera – and her three new offspring. My photo of the day. A little something for peace and renewal.

This plant is the fourth aloe vera to inhabit this pot since the “shoestring renovations” of my school library, but certainly the most successful (the previous occupants have since recovered after a return to less neglectful circumstances). This week Vera showed off her triplets, much to the excitement of my observant, pint-size borrowers at the charging desk.

Going green

peace lily

There’s an annoying drip of condensation that often falls from each air conditioner in the school library, and something important always ends up getting placed right underneath said drips, and being ruined. I’m getting very tired of items becoming water damaged. Thus, this elegant $12 peace lily (Spathiphyllum), in a $13 square pot, now graces one of the drip sites. Problem solved?

I’m reliably informed – via both a teaching colleague and an Internet search – that “growing a peace lily beside a computer or TV will help absorb some of the radiation”.

Ladder and vine

Again, helping to disguise yet another drip site, and some very ugly conduit, here’s a $29 bamboo ladder, decorated with a $10 artificial vine, and a vase of $5 worth of purple tortured willow. A small amount of dried greenery is yet to be added.