We read the book, “Cat in the Hat” by Dr. Seuss and noticed that the Cat loved to balance different things on his head, tail and hands. So we decided it would be fun to do some balancing ourselves. We used blocks, bean bags, books and green tape to practice our balancing skills. We made lots of predictions before counting to see how long something would stay standing, or how many objects we could balance on top of something. Afterwards we talked about what a graph was and how it works, and then we graphed our answers.
- Following Directions (sitting behind the green tape, sitting in front of the paper, counting together, etc)
- Counting and number recognition practice
- Practice on making predictions
- Graphing practice
This afternoon our Pre-K class had an opportunity to lead a learning lesson with our littlest students – the EPS class (Early Preschool). Ms. Amber’s EPS class came into our room and paired up with the Pre-K students. Pre-K children chose a book from our library and sat down with their little buddy to read to them. Several of our kids said, “Ms. Leah, we can’t read!”, but they were encouraged to look at the pictures and make up stories based on what they saw throughout the book. Everyone seemed to have a great time with this!
We remind Pre-K all of the time that they are the oldest kids in the school and the little ones look up to them. We talk about what it means to be a leader and to set a good example at school each day. This was just a great opportunity for our class to practice being leaders and work together with the little ones!
Say Goodbye to Germs!
Today in Pre-K we did a fun activity with glitter. We covered markers with glue and then rolled them in glitter. The glitter was supposed to represent “germs”. We had the kids pick up the markers and write their names and pretend like there was nothing on the markers. This was fun for some and for others they REALLY did not want to touch these glittery markers! After they wrote their names we had them look at their hands and see all of the glitter that covered them. Then we talked about how this is just like germs except with germs you can’t actually see them! So if you cough in your hand, sneeze on your hand or use the restroom without washing your hands, those germs can spread to anything and everything that we touch. They thought this was so silly but it was a great way to really understand the concept of yucky germs and the importance of washing our hands frequently!
In Pre-K we are starting to learn our phone numbers. We have talked about many different reasons why it is a good idea to learn a home phone number or a phone number for mom or dad. Some great responses were, “We need to know our phone number so that we can call it” and “We need to know our phone number in case we get lost”. So, we’ve started practicing our phone number with a fun little jingle. They kids smile from ear to ear as they sing and point to each number.
Each child has been given a paper cell phone with their name and phone number written on the back of it. One activity we decided would be fun was to have each child cut out the numbers in their phone number and put the numbers back in the right order. This was challenging but they did great! Once they glued their number back in the right order they got to use their cell phone to practicing dialing the phone number and having a pretend conversation with mom or dad. Once they dialed their phone number successfully they had to write the number on their paper. They loved this and felt like such big kids! We will continue practicing these phone numbers and hopefully be able to dial on a real telephone in the near future!
As early childhood professionals, we understand that math operations do not need to be taught to children as young as four. Rather, it is first necessary to ensure that students understand that objects have value, and that counting is more than just saying numbers. Number awareness is a fundamental concept that must be introduced before higher operations are conceptualized. When I walked into Ms. Leah’s class last week, I loved the way she reinforced the math skill of counting objects, while introducing the children to the basic concept of addition. I asked Ms. Leah to write a short summary of her lesson and explain how she integrated it with the “healthy mind, healthy body, and healthy planet” values of The Grove School.
During the unit Outside My Window, we talked a lot about recycling and taking care of our earth. We have been learning how to write and recognize our numbers, so a fun activity we decided to try was Nature Addition. This was the first time most of these kids had seen or talked about addition. We discussed what a plus sign and equal sign does. We then had some fun picking out different pieces of nature (leaves, grass, wood chips, rocks, etc) and putting them on our addition mats. We put a few pieces on one side of the plus sign and a few more pieces on the other side, then we counted each side individually and then counted all of them together to see find the total. It was fun to get to start practicing big kid math , and what better way to do that then to use little pieces of the world around us!