Our movement and motion unit began with a study of balls. During the past two weeks the children have explored balls and how they move. They’ve talked about and practiced bouncing, rolling, throwing, catching, and kicking balls.
The rolling balls activity also presented the children with the opportunity to practice the measuring skills they had learned previously. Each child rolled his ball and then measured how far it went.
After measuring the distance their balls traveled the kids could then compare which balls went the farthest. That lead to further discussion about why some balls rolled farther than others.
A variety of balls are available for the kids to play with. This also helped the children to see that different balls have varying purposes such as kicking or throwing.
Little Pandas Preschool
The next science unit the children will explore is movement and motion. While the children study these concepts Gloria is introducing Chinese transportation vocabulary. Kerry has been playing with the children daily and helping them to build a multitude of layouts. He has encouraged the kids to use problem solving skills as well as teamwork to accomplish this task. The end result is a great layout in which to play that wholly engages the children.
The trains are a part of our new updated block center which will continually be added to throughout the year. We took an inventory of what we had and then put ads on Craigslist to find more Brio trains and accessories. I’m sure there will be a great layout around the children’s Christmas tree this year!
I would encourage parents to look at this inspiring blog to get ideas for playing with your children at home. Wooden Track Mind
Little Pandas Preschool
Kerry painted our wheelbarrow blue to match the boat and then the children created a miniature playscape in it.
They filled the wheelbarrow with soil,
put in some plants,
and then topped it with bark chip.
They finished the project by adding a couple rocks and then played with dinosaurs and insects in the new space. Their new playscape is portable so when interest wanes we can move it to another location and put a different set of animals in it.
On Tuesday the kids played a life sized version of Candyland! Our gym was made into a giant gameboard with construction paper spaces. Stuffed animals were used for markers. Each space had an animal or color printed on it corresponding to the Chinese vocabulary the children are learning. The children used a huge foam die for moving along the gameboard. After rolling the die and moving the required number of spaces the children were then asked to name the animal or color they had landed on in Chinese. A correct answer was rewarded with a second turn. While the normal sized version of the game is fun, the life sized version has some additional benefits. The children were involved in physical activity and able to move around freely while playing the game. There was also more cooperative work happening. The children liked the huge die and all wanted to help count the dots on it and make sure everyone moved their stuffed animal the correct number of spaces.
Today the preschoolers finished their unit study about Oregon. We set up a campground in the gym where they played for the entire day. Children paddled in the canoe on the lake, sang songs around the campfire, and napped in sleeping bags. The toddlers joined us in our celebration for the morning. One even asked if the blue mat was real water! Later in the afternoon we made s’mores at the kitchen gas stove.
Nearly everyone is back at day care and healthy again. Things were a bit crazy last week trying to keep ratios intact with teachers and kids being absent. We managed by having the preschoolers join their friends at the baby house. The kids had a great time playing together and the teachers took a few pics of the kids outside.