One of the loveliest things about our gorgeous school building (which still seems so new to me) is the fact my classroom has a front and back "porch". The front porch, which is part of the library, can be used for many things - a quiet place to work, a safe private area to work out social difficulties, or simply a cozy spot right outside the classroom to read. Our back porch, which is outside near the parking lot, is a good place for seedlings to grow, and for impromptu projects like the current chalk painting one.
Children have been grinding colorful chalk on the blackboard for a while now, but today was such a fine day they took the project outside. Marann supplied some sidewalk chalk from her house, and shared it generously. I stopped by the store after school today to buy many more buckets of chalk, so the children should be well supplied for the rest of the year.
This is one of those projects I love because it is totally child-driven, there is sharing and cooperation involved, all children are drawn to it, and, well, it's beautiful. As big chunks of chalk are ground to dust, paint brushes swirl the dust around to make a lovely rainbow of color. The students may decide to make "paint" out of the dust by adding water, or just enjoy as is. I think most of their pleasure comes from the "doing" - the industrious nature of working together to make something.