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Tiny Town Pilot

Today and for the next few days,  I am doing a pilot for the proposal that is here.   You could consider that what is written here is a skeleton of an idea that I would like to see developed into a program where kids are introduced to ideas about forces of nature and human habitat. I want kids to play like engineers.  Today and for the next few days I am on a mission to give this idea a test run.  Now I am going to collect my buckets and shovels and go get muddy.  Thanks Matt, Dayna and Warren.  

Tiny Town is a worksite for the construction of a scaled down village that sits in the landscape on the side of the stream and up the bank of the gully.  The children will be set in motion to fabricate this town with the materials they find around them.  Tiny town is a play space for building and an outdoor classroom.  It is an orderly space set up with tables, tarps, bundles and piles of supplies that have been collected, sticks and rocks sorted by size. We see buckets, shovels, trowels and rope. There is a pit to be used as a place to mix up clay sand and dirt, ancient mortar.   

Lets have the children consider a habitat for tiny occupants. They must take into accont the characteristics of the materials and the shape of the landscape.  Mud sticks and rocks are transformed.  Tiny Town is a laboratory for architecture, landscape, gravity and the forces of water. 

         7/8, 7/9 and 7/10
Town | Tiny Town
      Down by the Stream   

Tiny Town at Cayuga Nature Center: 
It has been a fabulous three days with the kids, down by the stream, building with mud and sticks and stones. The village is all set to go, waiting for its tiny inhabitants to show up.  

How did the children build? Given the materials and the methods, they imagined a community. Over the  days The town became laced together by paths crossing  the river, up ladders and over bridges  The strong social aspect is something that surprised me. 

 I had imagined Tiny Town being a project primarily about the forces of nature and architecture, becuase that is my interests.  The children knew what to to as soon as they were set in motion.  Each one approached building in their own occording to their own personality and interests.   Some worked individually, other in groups.  Some preferred dry land, while others wanted to be perched in the middle of the stream or tucked away in the cliff.  

It is my interest to use this pilot to develope a more comprehensive project for next year.  There is much to take away and it will take some time and thought to sort it out.  Stay tuned.  


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