The children have been enjoying all that school has to offer! They have been actively engaged with all the materials in the room as well as busy making social connections. Our primary focus for the week is to continue the relationship building process and also to build a sense of classroom community. Our awareness building activities centered around the topic of homes and individuals, will be expanded to consider important elements of one's habitat that exist outside of the home. The children have also been noticing and talking about the falling leaves and are tuned in to seasonal changes in the environment so we will support this in our outdoor explorations as well as indoor investigations.
-Materials: Wood scraps, cardboard, and glue. Easel with orange, yellow, and red paint
-Rationale: The wood scraps will promote the construction of homes using a medium that will encourage creativity and design as well as the opportunity to return to the same structure by adding new details over the course of time. The new paint colors will bring fall colors into the children's artwork and inspire interest and discussion about seasonal change.
-Skills: Self-expression, creative risk-taking, construction skills, fluency with materials, color recognition, and fine motor development.
-Materials: Water, toy animals that are found in local ponds, foliage, sponges, and small cups.
-Rationale: To promote cooperative, imaginative play within the "pond" landscape and provide opportunities to make comparisons between human and animal habitats.
-Skills addressed: exploring, touching, socio-dramatic play, small group interaction, making comparisons, sensory stimulation and pleasure.
-Materials: Pictures of items that could be found inside or outside of a house. Light table with an assortment of different shapes in a variety of colors. Pumpkins, gourds, a scale, clipboards, colored pencils, and magnifying glasses. We also have Boxy the box turtle.
-Rationale: We have created a sorting activity in which the children build awareness the elements of their habitat that are outside of their homes. We will encourage conversation and support inquiry by asking questions related to the objects and how they meet the needs of people. At the light table the children will have an opportunity to match and compare shape, size, and color of leaves. By introducing the pumpkins and gourds to the science area we hope to begin to build the children's awareness of an additional aspect of the fall season. Additionally, posted questions such as "Which pumpkin is the heaviest?" and "How are pumpkins and gourds the same? How are they different?" will encourage the children to begin to think scientifically by making comparisons and formulating questions.
-Skills: Inquiry, observation, grouping, sorting, asking questions, hypothesizing, and comparing.
Math and manipulatives
-Materials: Large Lego bases, duplos, interlocking puzzles, tangrams, color/shape bingo
-Rationale: The children have been actively engaged in building individual homes so we added larger lego bases to promote communal building and social interaction. At the same time, this will provide the space necessary to represent additional components of their habitats such as the outdoor environment and their neighborhood.
-Skills addressed: Constructive play opportunity to create three-dimensional objects, representational skills, imaginative play, and social-skills
Language and Literacy
-Materials: A variety of writing implements, paper, notebooks, and a posting of the upper and lower case alphabet. A well-stocked library with books about fall related topics including leaves, trees, and animals.
-Rationale: To provide new books in the library that will begin to interest the children in the topic of fall and promote conversation about their own fall experiences.
-Skills: Letter recognition, listening and receptive abilities, fine motor control, familiarity with symbol systems
-Materials: Hollow blocks, unit blocks, small wooden cars, and pictures of houses and buildings.
-Rationale: To support the children's block building, we will provide pictures of houses they built previously as well as a wider variety of actual dwellings for reference or to inspire further elaboration and creative building.
-Skills: Construction skills, geometry, spatial skills, dramatic play, symbolic representation, and problem solving.
-Materials: Face matching game
-Rationale: As we continue the process of building classroom community, we created a personalized matching game that will help the children learn the names of their classmates.
-Skills addressed: Community building, matching, name recognition
-Materials: Slide climber, wall mounted ladders, monkey bars, mini-trampoline, and jumping station. The playground will be set up with shovels, buckets, and rakes.
-Rationale: In the gym we will be playing group games to promote a sense of community. The rakes on the playground have inspired the children to make large leaf piles for jumping into.
-Skills: Risk taking, climbing, coordination, upper body strength, depth perception, balance, jumping and landing. On the playground there are opportunities for digging, hauling, pedaling, running.
Monday - Rice cakes & raisins
Tuesday - Harvest granola bars (dried apple/cranberry)
Wednesday - Trail mix
Thursday - Tortilla crisps & apple slices
Friday- Cooking project (Oatmeal bars)