I was recently given a copy of the book ‘The Life of Pi’ by Yann Martel to read for my book group and having not seen the film I was eager to get started. I was thrilled to discover that this book is full of beautifully written descriptive passages that celebrate the wonders of the natural world as well as human and animal behaviours. My Year 1 children loved the description of sea turtles and the following passage could be used with pictures in Geography lessons when teaching about different cloud formations.
The Life of Pi, Chapter 78, page 215:
There were many skies. The sky was invaded by great white clouds, flat on the bottom but round and billowy on top. The sky was completely cloudless, of a blue quite shattering to the senses. The sky was a heavy, suffocating blanket of grey cloud, but without the promise of rain. The sky was thinly overcast. The sky was dappled with small, white, fleecy clouds. The sky was streaked with high, thin clouds that looked like a cotton ball stretched apart. The sky was a featureless milky haze. The sky was a density of dark and blustery rain clouds that passed without delivering rain. The sky was painted with a small number of flat clouds that looked like sandbars. The sky was a mere block to allow a visual effect on the horizon: sunlight flooding the ocean, the vertical edges between light and shadow perfectly distinct. The sky was a black curtain of falling rain. The sky was many clouds at many levels, some thick and opaque, others looking like smoke.
We often use children’s picture books to enhance learning about our wonderful world but why not use adult literature such as this?
What an amazing concert at the Royal Albert Hall tonight. The schools choir was fabulous, Tring School dancers brilliant and the Herts Orchestra fantastic. I especially loved the moving piece written for the anniversary of the beginning of World War 1, called We will remember them.
We headed off to the Essex coast today to visit family and made the most of the fabulous weather we are having by taking a walk along the Brightlingsea seafront. We enjoyed reading the interesting names of all the beach huts but sadly could see evidence of the recent storms and floods. We also discovered Brightlingsea’s own leaning tower.
The children raised money by running round the playground dressed in red.
The children had a fabulous discussion trying to decide where the best location for our castle would be today. They used a huge range of geographical language as they described how a castle could be attacked easily in some locations and how it would be protected in others. The children choose this mound outside our classroom and have suggested we dig a moat!
We made the most of the beautiful weather today and went for a walk along the Grand Union Canal. This picturesque waterway is so close to us in Abbots Langley and when I got home I was keen to discover more.
The Grand Union Canal is as the name suggests an amalgamation of several independent waterways that had been built to improve the communication links between the vibrant heart of London, through the rolling hills of the Chilterns and on to Birmingham. It is 137 miles long and has 166 locks. The canal tow path was busy today with families like ourselves out for a walk, joggers or cyclists enjoying the peace and sunshine.
We had a great day at school today as we celebrated Book Day. Wonderland looked fabulous in their costumes.