As the end of the year is rapidly approaching, our small groups are coming to a close. On Tuesday and Wednesday, our small groups will be finishing their projects and sharing with the class what they have done the past seven weeks. The children have enjoyed all of the interesting changes we made to the classroom this past week! Instead of changing the environment again, we will be incorporating a variety of new materials in order for the children to continue their active exploration. We are going to focus on making lines using different art media throughout the week. Wire, pipe cleaners, and paint are some of the materials that the children will be able to use to make lines. The children have been spending a lot of time on the playground. The water group began digging a "river" by the shed, and all of the children have enjoyed helping them by adding a system of rivers and lakes. This coming week we are going to take advantage of the nice weather by going for a "sensory walk" as a class. This will give the children an opportunity to focus on using all of their senses to experience the springtime changes.
-Materials: Projector, overhead sheets, overhead markers, wire, pipe cleaners, collage materials, paint, thick and thin paint brushes, crayons, colored pencils, musical instruments (rhythm sticks, shaker eggs, tambourines, etc.)
-Rationale: As we continue to talk about lines, we will provide different art materials in order for the children to express their ideas through different media. To provide more opportunities to use the projector, we will be providing blank overhead sheets for the children to express their ideas and see how their artwork changes when put it onto the projector. To support musical expression we will encourage the children to listen for rhythmic beats and create their own sounds.
-Skills: Using a variety of materials, fine motor skills, and participation/creation in art and musical experiences, symbolic representation.
-Materials: glurch, rocks, markers, straws
-Rationale: Many of the children have been drawn to the glurch, so we will enhance their experience by adding different materials throughout the week for further experimentation.
-Skills: Observation, prediction, ideas, sensory input, representation, physical properties
-Materials: Insect terrarium, chick eggs, tadpoles, fish, mealworms, cockroaches,
-Rationale: The insect group put together an insect terrarium that will be on display in the science area. This will give the children an opportunity to observe the insects, as well as have a place to put future insects they find. The children will continue to add depth to their understanding of the life cycle through examination and care of the insects, tadpoles, and plants.
-Skills: Observation, prediction, comparisons, expressing ideas, using past experiences/knowledge of the natural world
-Materials: symbolic spider cave, cardboard tubes, tape, scissors, fabric for dressing up, stuffed animals, plastic animals
-Rationale: As the children continue to learn more about different kinds of bugs we decided to support their exploration by transforming the cave into a spider web. By providing other insects, yarn, chunks of wood, and sticks the children can make additions to the "web" during their dramatic play. The children have been using their previous knowledge and applying it to the symbolic spider cave. They have been tying up fake insects in the web, just like spiders. We will continue to provide materials for the children to use the cave in a creative way.
-Skills: creative expression, sharing ideas, social problem solving, communication, symbolic representation
Math and Manipulatives
-Materials: tacks, yarn, tack board, puzzles, graphs, charts, rulers, games with rules, musical instruments
-Rationale: The children have enjoyed using different materials to represent spider webs. In order to provide an opportunity to practice spatial sense and geometry skills, the children will make their own spider webs with tack board and yarn. We will also continue to observe the weather, and examine the changes we have seen over the past couple weeks. The children will also develop the ability to create and recognize patterns using musical instruments.
-Skills: Geometry, spatial sense, patterns, problem solving, working with peers, fine motor skills, synthesizing, connecting mathematical concepts with real life experiences
Language and Literacy
-Materials: Chalkboard, Boggle letters, envelopes, paper, pencils, chalk, writing worksheets, spider books, fiction and non-fiction books
-Rationale: As some of the children are transitioning to kindergarten next year, we decided to set up the writing center with a kindergarten feel. We will encourage combining letter sounds by using Boggle letters to form words. We will be providing "academic" worksheets for the children to use. We will also be providing questions on the chalkboard in order to give the children an opportunity to write more focused information on the board. All of the materials will give the children the ability to either symbolically represent school, or practice their academic skills.
-Skills: Letter recognition, engage in purposeful writing, creative expression, and communication through writing.
-Materials: Wooden cars, unit blocks, hollow blocks, insects, stuffed animals, plastic toy animals
-Rationale: Adding cars to the unit block area will give the children an opportunity to explore different play themes, such as race tracks or streets. The stuffed animals and plastic animals are available to support and encourage the children's continuous interest in animal houses. As we provide different kinds of animals, we hope to support different kinds of house structures and play themes.
-Skills: Fine motor, large motor skills, creative expression, group problem solving, symbolic representation.
-Materials: Rolling hill, slide, a frame ladder, donut hole, climbing ladders, hop-scotch, monkey bars
-Rationale: We encourage the children to think of new and creative ways to experiment with the equipment and challenge their physical abilities through play and other large motor games. -Skills: Upper body strength, balance and coordination, rolling, jumping and landing, throwing skills, target practice, and spatial and body awareness, and turn-taking
-Materials: Boats, water, shovels, tricycles, water, blocks, buckets, kites, traffic signs
-Rationale: The children are enjoying digging and making the river on the playground. With the water group making boats to float, we are encouraging the other children to use materials in order to make their own boats to float down the river. This will give them an opportunity to express their ideas and problem solve if something happens to their boat (it gets stuck, it doesn't float, etc.) We also encourage the children to use different materials and props in order to support new and inventive forms of play or themes on the playground.
-Skills: Large motor skills, fine motor skills, communication, cooperation, coordination, endurance, problem solving skills.
Monday - Sunbutter sandwiches
Tuesday - Rice cakes & apples
Wednesday - Bananas & Graham crackers
Thursday - Animal crackers & oranges
Friday- Pumpkin muffins