Cherry blossom odango

What can we do next on our large painting? That was the question that our teachers were asking one another. They were not sure and since we had many things to do in our classroom this morning, we decided to give our art work a break, and just enjoy looking at it. We spent the morning being really, creative with food. Hisami has a special way of teaching us how to make things and you can see from the beautiful birthday cards and other cards that we make, she has a wonderful, artistic talent which we are encouraged and motivated to learn from.

We made ‘odango’ today. Hisami was motivated to make odango, during cherry blossom time, because we had mochi powder left over from when Ai san, Jotaro’s mum came to our class to teach us about Japan. There is a saying in Japan “Hana yori dango” which means “we prefer odango to cherry blossoms” because when it is sakura time, people are eating and drinking and forget to look at the beautiful cherry blossoms around them.

     We added water to the mochi mixture and stirred it until it was smooth. We spoke about cherry blossoms while we were preparing our cooking and we said that they are all pink. Our teachers weren’t sure if they are all pink but they were happy to go along with our suggestion. So, if we were going to make cherry blossoms out of mochi powder, we needed to make them pink. How were we going to do this? We remembered that when we made play dough a long time ago, we added some red powder and it became pink. So, Hisami took the red powder and sprinkled some of it into the mochi mixture. Can you guess what happened to the white mochi      mixture? Yes, it went pink. Wow! This was the same colour as the cherry blossoms that we saw in the park. The mixture became thicker like play dough and we rolled little balls of pink mochi to represent the cherry blossoms. We rolled and rolled and rolled and then we were ready to make a cherry blossom tree.

Hisami put a piece of paper onto the tray that we were going to make the mochi cherry blossom tree on. We looked at our artificial cherry blossom stem and drew it on the paper. We used pencils to make the stem and branches and then we put a piece of baking paper on top of the drawing and made the cherry blossom tree.  We used sweet stick crackers to make the branches and stem and then we added the pink “odango” for the cherry blossoms. We used up all of the pink “odango” and then our tree was complete. Now it was time to eat it. We had kinako, which is soy powder and “anko”, which is sweet red bean paste…..yummmmm! As always, many of us wanted to have two helpings which we did. Our teachers said that if we wanted more, we could have some leftovers after lunch; which we did! It was soooooo delicious!

Most of us have now completed our Mother’s Day gifts, cards etc which is great, because we can put more focus back on our art mural.

We enjoyed playing with some unique play dough which Sunny gave us. It is called play foam and is made from tiny balls which stick together. We enjoyed the texture of it and enjoyed mixing the colours together. Then we tried to separate the colours and pick out the tiny balls with our fingers. Our teachers were so curious to see if we could do it and we did. We actually wanted to pick out the colours that didn’t belong and then when we had separated them to the best of our patience and ability, we squished them together again!

We discussed seeds and decided that we wanted to plant some vegetables on our balcony. Shelley is going to buy some troughs and some soil and fertilizer so that they can grow in the best conditions. We looked at the different seeds and noticed that they are all small however they are slightly different in colour. We will plant spinach, carrots, onions and lettuce.

We had fun in the park and are glad that the weather is getting warmer and we can just walk to the park in our short sleeves.

We wish all our friends and their families who are going away over the Golden Week holidays, a wonderful trip. We know that they will enjoy quality family time together, wherever they are. We look forward to hearing all about their holidays when they return. In the meantime, we look forward to seeing some of our friends again on Monday and Tuesday next week.

We wish everyone a great weekend.

Love, all the “odango” in Petals Class.