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Make a Water Cycle Science Terrarium & Miniature World | In The Real Wonderland

Alice Campbell
Average rating:5.0Number of reviews:(188)
With stories, play, hands-on creativity, gardening & imagination, we'll create a miniature world terrarium for our dinosaurs, fairies, animals, Minecraft, or toys while learning about water cycle science. This is a play-based, interest-led class, suitable for homeschool and unschooling learners | Co-op Discounts Available | Neurodiverse, Autism, ADHD, Dyslexia, Gifted Inclusive.

Class experience

US Grade Pre-Kindergarten - 2
Beginner - Advanced Level
The intended learning outcomes for this class are aligned with the Australian and UK early years curricula. They are also consistent with the preschool/ early years curricula for NZ, China, Korea and most European countries. This class utilises the Michigan Essential Literacy Practices Framework, and the Mathematics Learning Trajectories. 
Intended Learning Outcomes

1. I can begin to make predictions about the water-cycle in a terrarium, and communicate these using language or other representations. 
2. I can make connections between my terrarium and more general concepts and processes about the water-cycle in the environment. 
3. I can use representations to help organise and communicate my ideas, thoughts and concepts. 
I am a Masters-qualified Early Childhood teacher, with specialisations in Inclusive Education. I also hold a Bachelor of Nursing, and have over 30 years of experience in designing and delivering early childhood (0 - 8 years) programs, and I have received numerous awards for designing immersive early childhood development, learning and mental health programs and for excellence in practice. I am an experienced clinical/ and field supervisor (social workers, teachers, nurses). I have completed specialist and postgraduate  Teacher training in Talk for Writing, Play Therapy/ Therapeutic Play, Sand Play, DIR-Floortime,  Neurosequential Development, and Hanan Speech interventions. 
Homework Offered
This is a flex class, meaning that there are no "live meetings" and activities are completed independently at home. The expected length of time for these activities will vary depending on each child's own interests and attention. As a general guide, the terrarium-building component of the class will take most children between 20 - 30 minutes. However, this may be extended depending on the child's interests, using the extension activities and prompts.
1 - 2 hours per week outside of class
Assessments Offered
This class is a FLEX class, and families may choose to explore the materials independently. However, children may also choose to share their creations and discoveries in the classroom where I will provide personalised feedback. In this context, I do not use tests or other standardised approaches to assessing children's progress. In this age group, testing it is not developmentally appropriate and in some cases may be psychologically and academically harmful. Instead, I provide feedback to actively contribute to each child's learning in ways that are meaningful for them. To do this, I make observations that specifically relate to the child's development and interests, in relation to the learning outcomes of the class (see above). I then routinely provide feedback to children. This may consist of: ~ positive affirmation (e.g. "I really liked the way you communicated your idea with that creation"); ~ positive reflection (e.g. "I wonder how you came up with that idea?"); and/ or ~ positive stretching (e.g. "I wonder if you could show that idea in other ways?). This is a wholistic approach to assessment. The child's response to my feedback helps me understand of "how far" they have travelled in their learning, and then "what comes next" in their learning. I welcome questions and inquiries from parents about their child's learning progress.
Grades Offered
 1 file available upon enrollment
ESSENTIAL materials include: A CLEAR CONTAINER FOR THE TERRARIUM The main requirements are that it needs to be able to be sealed with a lid or plastic food wrap/ rubber band seal. It should also be wide enough at the top for your child to fit their hand inside for planting. You can use a fancy terrarium jar if you like. But for beginners I suggest using something recycled from the home or from the dollar store, for example: - a glass/ mason jar with a lid, - an old fish tank/ bowl, - a 2 or 3 litre soft drink (soda) bottle with the top cut off (save the top, and use it as a lid) - recycled food packaging (clear plastic) TERRARUM MATERIALS - small stones or pebbles - charcoal (this helps stop bacteria, and is usually available from most nursery stores sold as “horticultural charcoal”) - potting mix - moss (this can be purchased from a nursey in the form of “sphagnum” moss) - 1 - 2 small plants to fit inside your terrarium. For this project, little baby ferns or vines would be ideal (the water cycle won't be quite as obvious if you are using succulents or cacti). **A full list of suggested plants will be provided on enrolment. GENERAL SUPPLIES - A cup or large spoon (to pick up and move materials) - A bottle of water. MINI-WORLD DECORATIONS - Most children love making "mini worlds" in their terrarium. Having a few plastic dinosaurs, fairies, or jungle animals to decorate offers an extra way to engage! Children can also use Minecraft or Pokémon characters, or even "natural" materials such as feathers and shells.
Most children will need assistance to prepare and set-up prior to hands-on component of the class. This will typically take around 10 minutes.  

Depending on their age, as well as executive function/ language/ planning and sequencing skills, some children will benefit from additional support to follow the steps in the terrarium-making process

This class includes a strong focus on children's hands-on participation and agency. I suggest having a large tray, towel or sheet to ensure easy clean-up following the class. Children should wear clothes that you are comfortable if they get messy or stained.  
This class uses the "Scientific Playworlds" model of teaching (Marilyn Fleer). This approach focuses on supporting science knowledge and scientific thinking through engaging children's  imagination and their own interests and inquiry (rather than "lecturing" them in facts). 
Average rating:5.0Number of reviews:(188)
PLEASE NOTE: At this time, Alice is on an extended medical leave.  She is not currently booking classes and is unable to respond to messages at this time.

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Hello! My name is Alice. 

Through my independent teaching... 
Flex Class


for 1 weeks
1 week

Completed by 4 learners
No live video meetings
Ages: 4-9

This class is no longer offered
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