Comments from the children’s..

“They changed color and are pointy. When I touch them they fall off the branch.”

“That’s because they have been in the sun too long. They need water.”

“Some are still green because they are in the shade. These ones are still alive, the orange ones are dead.”

“Let’s give them water! Let’s give them water! They will all turn green again.”

“Yeah, and we can put them all back in the shade and they will get green and be alive again.”

We did exactly what the children asked to do. We watered the pine needles and branches, placed them in the shade and a few days to see what would result from this. For the next observation I had the children draw and describe their work.


“The tree with points, when people touch them they hurt. That’s wood from the tree that is living and pine needles are green. That’s the sun going down. When the tree is going down then the tree breaks. It goes into pieces. That’s the wood with the stick that goes into the middle.”










Mia – I know why it is orange, it means it got too much sunshine on the sunny days, it’s spiky, it’s orange, it looks like pumpkin guts. See how they are starting to fall off that’s how you know they are dead. The ones that are too much in the sun are dead, then they got blowed in the wind.

Giuliana – It’s all alive, they are green when they are alive. See the orange color it’s dead right now. That’s a part of the reason why it fell down. This part isn’t, it’s still alive. This is the dead part and this is the live part. (Giuliana point to green pine needles calling them alive and orange pine needles calling them dead).“Here are the pine needles, these are the dead ones, they fall off easily. And the green ones do not fall off, they are alive. And the wood fell off of the tree. And there is rain in my picture, it is dripping because that’s how nature grows stuff.”