Saturday, February 1, 2014

Swimming, jumping, crawling, flying

I can't believe I continually collected photos over the month without posting. It was such a busy month as we explored animals. Learning about animals is a great exploration of social studies through information we already know. We use learning about animals to set examples to learn about where animals live, how animals move, character development, how animals act together, how we can take a civic responsibility to take care of out Earth to ensure we take care of the animals.

A large topic was how do animals transport. Which animals fly, which animals transport on the land (jumping, walking, crawling etc) and which animals swim.

One of our favorite ways to explore animals was dressing up and acting like them.

The costumes were a great tool to support the children's independence. The children were guided through steps by the parents and myself to be able to get the costumes on themselves. Although it wasn't always successful the first time the children tried (feet through the arm holes and hand through the heads) the children were encouraged not to give up, take the costumes off and try again. Once they were triumphant they would be so excited and pleased with themselves for being able to do it without an adults help. The best part was, they only needed the support one or two times, before they were able to do it alone without any help at all. 

Sand Play: the children made fences and homes

Using Lego to make a zoo
The children enjoyed their favorite penguin game! It is a fantastic game to support memory and turn taking. The penguins all have coloured eggs hidden under their legs, and the children were offered a coloured dice, that had the same colour of circles of the eggs hidden by the penguins. One by one, the children were taught how to roll the dice, before picking up one penguin to see if the egg matched the dice. If the children correctly matched the colours, they were able to hold onto the egg for the game. The children had an easier time once they began to observe that they could memorize where they had seen the colour before their turn.

Making ramps

After learning about animals that fly, the preschool children were offered brown paper bags with the hopes to make puppets. I attempted to leave the concept open ended, not asking the children to make puppets but hoping with the provocation of materials would inspire them. Many decided to make paper bag puppets, but a few just made them for their mommies.

Her bird

I also hoped to influence the children to create sock puppets.
Again, a couple made them for their moms.

Painting with plastic animals

During circle we talked about how we could take care of the animals in our environment. During our conversations about "animals that fly" the children told me we could feed them! So we made them bird feeders.

During our preparation, we used measuring to make enough for everyone. 
I made sure to offer the children exposure to the recipe to encourage math and adding.

Sensory - pushing the bird feed down with their fists

At the dollarama I found some little journals to encourage the children to draw and write more.
They have become a collection of drawings, pictures and stickers.

Drawing a feather
Our Yoga teacher Ms Jenn came to do a special field trip to offer some yoga fun to all the children at the playschool.

Ms Alana came to visit us from the Edmonton Public Library to read us some stories about animals.

We got to use rhythm sticks!
My favorite part about talking about animals is that we can read "The Mitten" by Jan Brett.
After reading about the animals, I had the children use story telling to let me know what kind of animal would live in their mittens!

We even became the animals in the mitten.

One of the most exciting parts of our animal theme is our field trip to West Edmonton Mall's sea life caverns.
We had the chance to WATCH a sea lion swim, as well as many other amazing other tricks.
Quinty helped us learn about sea animals in a way we may not have been able to in our classroom, by watching and experiencing her in movement.

Meeting a Penguin

Feeding sea turtles

Touching sea plants and stars

Touching sting rays - don't worry they can't sting us


Ms Asha 

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