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Our Weather Inquiry and the Four Frames!

Our inquiry into weather began with a windy day outdoors in our Full Day Kindergarten backyard.  Windmills were placed in the garden for the children and provoked immediate curiosity and interest!

           (PSI: SE 13.2-  make predictions and observations before and during investigations)

Children began to watch the windmills daily, noticing the days they moved quickly and the days that they hardly moved.  Educators prompted deeper thinking by asking, “Why do you think that might be?”  The children came up with ideas and theories prior to conducting their own research:

Little Miss L: “They move fast when the sun is out!”

Little Miss A: “Umm…they move fast when I do this!” (makes a blowing motion)

Little Mr. D: “The windmills are moving fast today.”

Little Mr. G: “They are moving fast because the wind is blowing and when the wind is not out they don’t move.”

So we created a weather team that began to research, “Where does wind come from?” The children went to the Library and collected books about wind. They recorded their information and presented their findings during Sharing Time.

img_2129[DLMB: SE 11.10- retell information from non-fiction materials that have been read by and with the educator team in a variety of contexts (e.g., read-alouds, shared reading experiences), using pictures and/or props.]

During play, children were also given the opportunity to visit the Art Studio and choose various materials to show “What does wind look like?”

img_2117[BC: SE 30.2 – explore a variety of tools, materials, and processes of their own choice (e.g., blocks, puppets, flashlights, streamers, castanets, rhythm sticks, natural and recycled materials) to create drama, dance, music, and visual art forms in familiar and new ways]

As the children learned more about wind, they began to notice how the clouds moved on windy days.  We lay out on the grass, watched the clouds and used our imagination to find animals and shapes in the clouds.

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(https://myprettycanvas.com/2012/06/)

Our weather inquiry continued as we took a closer look at how clouds are formed and the various types of clouds.  Informational texts were placed on the Inquiry Table so the children had the opportunity to research and create the types of clouds they observed each day.

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[DMLB/PSI: SE 10.1- demonstrate an interest in writing (e.g., choose a variety of writing materials, such as adhesive notes, labels, envelopes, coloured paper, markers, crayons, pencils) and choose to write in a variety of contexts (e.g., draw or record ideas in learning areas)]

img_2121[All Four Frames: SE 22.1- communicate their ideas about something (e.g., a book, the meaning of a word, an event or an experience, a mathematical pattern, a motion or movement) through music, drama, dance, and/or the visual arts]

Check out our latest blog titled “The Weather Report” to see how the inquiry further developed and the children culminated their understandings. The Weather Report

Overall Expectations Represented

1.(All Four Frames)-communicate with others in a variety of ways, for a variety of purposes, and in a variety of contexts

2. (SRWB)-demonstrate independence, self-regulation, and a willingness to take responsibility in learning and other endeavours

3. (BC/SRWB)-identify and use social skills in play and other contexts

9. (DMLB/PSI)-demonstrate literacy behaviours that enable beginning readers to make sense of a variety of texts

10.  (DMLB/PSI)-demonstrate literacy behaviours that enable beginning writers to communicate with others

11. (DMLB)-demonstrate an understanding and critical awareness of a variety of written materials that are read by and with their educators

13.  (PSI)-use the processes and skills of an inquiry stance

14. (DMLB/PSI)-demonstrate an awareness of the natural and built environment through hands-on investigations, observations, questions, and representations of their findings

22. (All Four Frames)-communicate their thoughts and feelings, and their theories and ideas, through various art forms

Full Day Kindergarten Document 2016

(Four Frames)

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Blog written by:

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Lara Stott
caroline2016
Caroline Thornton
Posted in Full Day Kindergarten Expectations, Inquiry, Planning, Play Based Learning

The Full Day Kindergarten Weather Report- Evidence of the Four Frames

Since we began our inquiry into weather, each day a team of two or three children are chosen to take on the role of weather reporter.  Take a moment to watch the video below to see one team in action!

This has been a big hit in our class! The children are so excited to report the weather  to their classmates after each play time.

To learn about the daily weather, children are encouraged to use their senses while they play outdoors.  Once they come inside, each reporter is asked to go to the classroom window and draw what they see and what they felt outside (Note: In the video,  each child has a piece of paper in their hand with their own observations).  After they record their observations, alongside an educator, they listen to CITY-DT’s Breakfast Television’s daily weather forecast.  Children are encouraged to write the date and temperature for each day.

Let’s take a closer look for evidence of the overall expectations found in the four frames:

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(The Kindergarten Program Document 2016)

Overall Expectations Represented

1.(All Four Frames)-communicate with others in a variety of ways, for a variety of purposes, and in a variety of contexts

2. (SRWB)-demonstrate independence, selfregulation, and a willingness to take responsibility in learning and other endeavours

3. (BC/SRWB)-identify and use social skills in play and other contexts

9. (DMLB/PSI)-demonstrate literacy behaviours that enable beginning readers to make sense of a variety of texts

10.  (DMLB/PSI)-demonstrate literacy behaviours that enable beginning writers to communicate with others

13.  (PSI)-use the processes and skills of an inquiry stance

15.  (DMLS)-demonstrate an understanding of numbers, using concrete materials to explore and investigate counting, quantity, and number relationships

Specific Expectations Represented

Belonging and Contributing

1.2 listen and respond to others, both verbally and non-verbally (e.g., using the arts, using signs, using gestures and body language), for
a variety of purposes (e.g., to exchange ideas, express feelings, offer opinions) and in a variety of contexts (e.g., after read-alouds and shared reading or writing experiences; while solving a class math problem; in imaginary or exploratory play; in the learning areas; while engaged in games and outdoor play; while making scientific observations of plants and animals outdoors)

22.1 communicate their ideas about something (e.g., a book, the meaning of a word, an event or an experience, a mathematical pattern, a motion or movement) through music, drama, dance, and/or the visual arts

25.3 express their thoughts (e.g., about a science discovery, about something they have made) and share experiences

30.2  explore a variety of tools, materials, and processes of their own choice (e.g., blocks, puppets, flashlights, streamers, castanets, rhythm sticks, natural and recycled materials) to create drama, dance, music, and visual art forms in familiar and new ways

Self Regulation and Well Being

1.3 use and interpret gestures, tone of voice, and other non-verbal means to communicate and respond (e.g., respond to non-verbal cues from the educator; vary tone of voice when dramatizing; name feelings and recognize how someone else might be feeling)

1.6 use language (verbal and non-verbal communication) to communicate their thinking, to reflect, and to solve problems

2.2 demonstrate a willingness to try new experiences (e.g., experiment with new materials/tools; try out activities in a different learning area; select and persist with things that are challenging; experiment with writing) and to adapt to new situations (e.g., having visitors in the classroom, having a different educator occasionally, going on a field trip, riding the school bus)

2.3 demonstrate self-motivation, initiative, and confidence in their approach to learning
by selecting and completing learning tasks (e.g., choose learning tasks independently; try something new; persevere with tasks)

3.2  demonstrate the ability to take turns during activity and discussions (e.g., while engaged in play with others; in discussions with peers and adults)

Demonstrating Math and Literacy Behaviours

1.2 listen and respond to others, both verbally and non-verbally (e.g., using the arts, using signs, using gestures and body language),for a variety of purposes (e.g., to exchange ideas, express feelings, offer opinions) and in a variety of contexts (e.g., after read-alouds and shared reading or writing experiences; while solving a class math problem; in imaginary or exploratory play; in the learning areas; while engaged in games and outdoor play; while making scientific observations of plants and animals outdoors)

1.3 use and interpret gestures, tone of voice, and other non-verbal means to communicate and respond (e.g., respond to non-verbal cues from the educator; vary tone of voice when dramatizing; name feelings and recognize how someone else might be feeling)

1.5 use language (verbal and non-verbal communication) in various contexts to connect new experiences with what they already know (e.g., contribute ideas during shared or interactive writing; contribute to conversations in learning areas; respond to educator prompts)

10.1 demonstrate an interest in writing (e.g., choose a variety of writing materials, such
as adhesive notes, labels, envelopes, coloured paper, markers, crayons, pencils) and choose
to write in a variety of contexts (e.g., draw or record ideas in learning areas)

10.2 demonstrate an awareness that text can convey ideas or messages (e.g., ask the educator to write out new words for them)

10.3 write simple messages (e.g., a grocery list on unlined paper, a greeting card made on a computer, labels for a block or sand construction), using a combination of pictures, symbols, knowledge of the correspondence between letters and sounds (phonics), and familiar words

10.5  experiment with a variety of simple writing forms for different purposes and in a variety of contexts

14.1 ask questions about and describe some natural occurrences, using their own observations and representations(e.g., drawings, writing)

15.7  explore and communicate the function/ purpose of numbers in a variety of contexts (e.g., use magnetic and sandpaper numerals to represent the number of objects in a set [to indicate quantity]; line up toys and manipulatives, and identify the first, second, and so on [to indicate ordinality]; use footsteps to discover the distance between the door and the sink [to measure]; identify a favourite sports player: “My favourite player is number twenty-four” [to label or name])

15.7  explore and communicate the function/ purpose of numbers in a variety of contexts (e.g., use magnetic and sandpaper numerals to represent the number of objects in a set [to indicate quantity]; line up toys and manipulatives, and identify the first, second, and so on [to indicate ordinality]; use footsteps to discover the distance between the door and the sink [to measure]; identify a favourite sports player: “My favourite player is number twenty-four” [to label or name])

20.2  use, read, and represent whole numbers
to 10 in a variety of meaningful contexts (e.g., use a hundreds chart to read whole numbers; use magnetic and sandpaper numerals to represent the number of objects in a set; put the house number on a house built in the blocks area; find and recognize numbers in the environment; write numerals on imaginary bills at the restaurant in the dramatic play area)

Problem Solving and Innovating

1.2 listen and respond to others, both verbally and non-verbally (e.g., using the arts, using signs, using gestures and body language),for a variety of purposes (e.g., to exchange ideas, express feelings, offer opinions) and in a variety of contexts (e.g., after read-alouds and shared reading or writing experiences; while solving a class math problem; in imaginary or exploratory play; in the learning areas; while engaged in games and outdoor play; while making scientific observations of plants and animals outdoors)

1.4 sustain interactions in different contexts (e.g., with materials, with other children, with adults)

1.5 use language (verbal and non-verbal communication) in various contexts to connect new experiences with what they already know (e.g., contribute ideas during shared or interactive writing; contribute to conversations in learning areas; respond to educator prompts)

1.6 use language (verbal and non-verbal communication) to communicate their thinking, to reflect, and to solve problems

1.7 use specialized vocabulary for a variety of purposes (e.g., terms for things they are building or equipment they are using)

1.8 ask questions for a variety of purposes (e.g., for direction, for assistance, to innovate on an idea, to obtain information, for clarification, for help in understanding something, out of curiosity about something, to make meaning of a new situation) and in different contexts (e.g., during discussions and conversations with peers and adults; before, during, and after read-aloud and shared reading experiences; while exploring the schoolyard or local park; in small groups, in learning areas)

1.10  retell experiences, events, and familiar stories in proper sequence (e.g., orally; in new and creative ways; using drama, visual arts, non- verbal communication, and representations; in a conversation)

9.1 use reading behaviours to make sense of familiar and unfamiliar texts in print (e.g., use pictures; use knowledge of oral language structures, of a few high-frequency words, and/or of sound-symbol relationships)

10.1 demonstrate an interest in writing (e.g., choose a variety of writing materials, such
as adhesive notes, labels, envelopes, coloured paper, markers, crayons, pencils) and choose to write in a variety of contexts (e.g., draw or record ideas in learning areas)

10.2 demonstrate an awareness that text can convey ideas or messages (e.g., ask the educator to write out new words for them)

10.3 write simple messages (e.g., a grocery list on unlined paper, a greeting card made on a computer, labels for a block or sand construction), using a combination of pictures, symbols, knowledge of the correspondence between letters and sounds (phonics), and familiar words

10.4 use classroom resources to support their writing (e.g., a classroom word wall that
is made up of children’s names, words from simple patterned texts, and words used repeatedly in shared or interactive writing experiences; signs or charts in the classroom; picture dictionaries; alphabet cards; books)

10.5  experiment with a variety of simple writing forms for different purposes and in a variety of contexts

13.4 communicate results and findings from individual and group investigations (e.g., explain and/or show how they made their structure; state simple conclusions from an experiment; record ideas using pictures, numbers, and labels)

20.2  use, read, and represent whole numbersto 10 in a variety of meaningful contexts (e.g., use a hundreds chart to read whole numbers; use magnetic and sandpaper numerals to represent the number of objects in a set; put the house number on a house built in the blocks area; find and recognize numbers in the environment; write numerals on imaginary bills at the restaurant in the dramatic play area)

23.4 communicate their understanding of something (e.g., a familiar story, an experience, a song, a play) by representing their ideas and feelings through the arts

24.3 make predictions and observations as part of the process of creating and designing

24.5 communicate and record results and findings either individually or in groups (e.g., explain and/or show how they made their structure; record ideas using pictures, words, numbers on labels, or in charts)

Blog written by,

caroline2016
Caroline Thornton
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Lara Stott

Posted in Environment, Full Day Kindergarten Expectations, Inquiry, Planning, Play Based Learning

Evidence of the Four Frames in the Fire Truck Project

Evidence of the Frames in the Fire Truck Project 

Fire Truck Project learning story found here

Let’s take a closer look at the Kindergarten Program Overall Expectations:

(BC − Belonging and Contributing SRWB − Self-Regulation and Well-Being DLMB − Demonstrating Literacy and Mathematics Behaviours PSI − Problem Solving and Innovating) (The Kindergarten Program Document)

screen-shot-2016-11-11-at-6-22-17-pmscreen-shot-2016-11-11-at-6-22-24-pmscreen-shot-2016-11-11-at-6-22-30-pm

From just one play experience, we can gain a lot of information about what learning is taking place based on the four frames.  While observing the children engaged in play and by documenting their learning, we are able to capture learning and share learning with parents and other educators.   The documentation collected is used by educators to reflect and gain insight into the children’s learning.  This will contribute to the educators’ assessment of this inquiry.

All four frames are all evident in our Fire Truck Project and identified using the following Kindergarten Program Overall Expectations(OE):

Belonging and Contributing:

OE 1. communicate with others in a variety of ways, for a variety of purposes, and in a variety of contexts

OE 3. identify and use social skills in play and other contexts

OE 4. demonstrate an ability to use problem-solving skills in a variety of contexts, including social contexts

OE 22. communicate their thoughts and feelings, and their theories and ideas, through various art forms

OE 26. develop an appreciation of the multiple perspectives encountered within groups, and of ways in which they themselves can contribute to groups and to group well-being

OE 30. demonstrate an awareness of themselves as dramatists, actors, dancers, artists, and musicians through engagement in the arts

OE 31. demonstrate knowledge and skills gained through exposure to and engagement in drama, dance, music, and visual arts

Self-Regulation and Well-Being

OE 1. communicate with others in a variety of ways, for a variety of purposes, and in a variety of contexts

OE 2. demonstrate independence, self-regulation, and a willingness to take responsibility in learning and other endeavours

OE 3. identify and use social skills in play and other contexts

OE 4. demonstrate an ability to use problem-solving skills in a variety of contexts, including social contexts

OE 8. develop movement skills and concepts as they use their growing bodies to move in a variety of ways and in a variety of contexts

OE 22. communicate their thoughts and feelings, and their theories and ideas, through various art forms

Demonstrating Literacy and Mathematics Behaviours

OE 1. communicate with others in a variety of ways, for a variety of purposes, and in a variety of contexts

OE 9. demonstrate literacy behaviours that enable beginning readers to make sense of a variety of texts

OE 10. demonstrate literacy behaviours that enable beginning writers to communicate with others

OE 14. demonstrate an awareness of the natural and built environment through hands-on investigations, observations, questions, and representations of their findings

OE 17. describe, sort, classify, build, and compare two-dimensional shapes and three-dimensional figures, and describe the location and movement of objects, through investigation

OE 19. collect, organize, display, and interpret data to solve problems and to communicate information, and explore the concept of probability in everyday contexts

OE 21. express their responses to a variety of forms of drama, dance, music, and visual arts from various cultures and communities

OE 22. communicate their thoughts and feelings, and their theories and ideas, through various art forms

Problem Solving and Innovating

OE 1. communicate with others in a variety of ways, for a variety of purposes, and in a variety of contexts

OE 4. demonstrate an ability to use problem-solving skills in a variety of contexts, including social contexts

OE 9. demonstrate literacy behaviours that enable beginning readers to make sense of a variety of texts

OE 10. demonstrate literacy behaviours that enable beginning writers to communicate with others

OE 13. use the processes and skills of an inquiry stance (i.e., questioning, planning, predicting, observing, and communicating)

OE 22. communicate their thoughts and feelings, and their theories and ideas, through various art forms

OE 24. use technological problem-solving skills, on their own and with others, in the process of creating and designing (i.e., questioning, planning, constructing, analysing, redesigning, and communicating)

Taking a closer look at the individual children, let’s look at the Kindergarten Program Specific Expectations (SE).  Here are just a few of the pictures taken that represent some of the  specific expectations met during this inquiry.

During a large group discussion, Little H contributes an idea to the fire truck plan.   Her peers work with her to sound the word “hose”  out.

SE 1.2. listen and respond to others, both verbally and non-verbally

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Little A uses familiar letters and sounds to spell the word “wheel.”

SE 9.1. use reading behaviours to make sense of familiar and unfamiliar texts in print

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 As the students collaboratively paint the fire truck box, they discuss prior knowledge and experiences with community helpers.

SE 25.3. express their thoughts

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As the children take on the role of firefighters, conversation can be over heard as they retell Robert Munsch’s “The Fire Station.”

SE 23.4. communicate their understanding of something (e.g., a familiar story, an experience, a song, a  play) by representing their ideas and feelings through the arts

firetruck2

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Posted in Environment, Full Day Kindergarten Expectations, Inquiry, Planning, Play Based Learning

The Fire Truck Project

firetruck7

 “The Fire Truck Project”

Exploration, teamwork and fun is in full swing in our Full Day Kindergarten Program.  Throughout the room a gentle buzz of laughter, conversation and wonder can be heard each day.  We are excited to see the children participating and embracing a collaborative approach to learning.  In turn, the children are demonstrating the Catholic Graduate Expectation of A collaborative contributor who finds meaning, dignity and vocation in work which respects the rights of all and contributes to the common good.

After carefully observing and interacting with the children in the past few weeks, an interest in firefighters, fire trucks and fire safety emerged.  This interest has been demonstrated by the children through conversation, individual art work and dramatic play.

Educators decided to extend this learning by placing a large cardboard box in the classroom one morning.   As the children entered the classroom, an immediate interest began. They began to ask questions such as “What is that box for?” and “What is in the box?” So together we listened to a story written by Antoinette Portis called “Not A Box.” (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3KXuBcdmktY)  After a class survey, the children decided they wanted to use the box to create their very own “Fire Truck.”

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As the children began to talk about the truck, we decided we needed a plan.  We discussed colours and shapes we would need to make our fire truck, how many wheels we would need to give it, how many windows and doors, etc. We wanted to ensure we had the best fire truck for our Junior firefighters!  Once the fire truck was finished, each child carefully signed their name inside of the fire truck as a promise they would take extra special care of it.  After that, we began to enjoy what we created and played!

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firetruck2

Educators further promoted literacy skills by adding books to the shelves and reading books related to fire trucks, and firefighters such as “The Fire Station,” by Robert Munsch.  The children were prompted to expand their oral language and thinking when asked questions such as, “What do firefighters do for our community?”, “What colour is a fire truck?” and “What do they use to put out a fire?”

Throughout the classroom, children could be seen wearing fire hats, drawing and creating fire trucks, and putting out fires.  A real firefighter was invited into our classroom to talk to the children about fire safety.  Firefighter Rob shared his firefighter gear with the children, and even talked to them about making a home plan with mommy and daddy so everyone knows what to do in case of a fire.

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We are so excited to see where our wonderings and interest take us next!

Blog written by,

caroline2016
Caroline Thornton

Posted in Uncategorized

Parent Newsletter: Dinosaur Adventure

 

“Play is the only way the highest intelligence of humankind can unfold.”   Joseph Chilton Pearce

    dino5

     As we welcome our Year Two students back to a fun-filled year ahead, we would also like to extend a warm welcome to all our new little friends joining us on our journey. September has been a wonderful time spent getting to know all the new children and their families, as well as reconnecting with families from last year. The concept of play-based and inquiry-based learning may be new to some of our families, and our hope is that this newsletter will give parents and caregivers a glimpse into our classroom as we capture how the learning is taking place. Through these intentionally planned opportunities for learning, the children are beginning to effectively demonstrate the Ontario Catholic Graduate School Expectation of being reflective, creative and holistic thinkers who solve problems and make responsible decisions with an informed moral conscience for the common good.

To begin the year, the room was set up with an eclectic mix of materials, and toys. It was our intent to allow the children to take the lead to guide their play and learning. As educators, we understood the need at this time to get to know the children within our room, the need to build relationships with each child, each family, and between all the children in the room in hope of creating a stable, caring environment where each child feels valued and welcomed.

As we played and interacted with the children at each centre, a common interest in dinosaurs began to emerge. We decided to take this lead and provided various opportunities for the children to explore this play.dino6

To further this learning experience, the children were provided with different sets of dinosaur kits allowing them to take on the role of paleontologists and dig for dinosaur bones and fossils. The children gathered from all over the room as they took turns digging and working together to unearth and put together each bone they discovered within the bricks. The discussions heard and observed by teachers were exciting and meaningful, for example:

Educator (While children begin chipping away at brick): What do you think you might find?

Little Mr C: “An animal!”

Little Miss A: “Bones….dinosaur bones, maybe a fossil?”

Little Miss S: “I see a black spot here!”

Little Miss A: “The sand is coming off…Oh something white!”

Little Mr C: “I see something white …look!” (as he holds it up for his friends to see)

Little Miss L: “It might be a dinosaur!”

Little Miss A (Leaves the group, and then returns): “Did you find it yet?”

Although there are always many opportunities still present within the room for individual play experiences and interests, another way we took this play a bit further was by providing hatching dinosaur eggs…but the children had no idea what was hiding inside. The moment the children walked into the room, curiosity set in! We could hear and see them using the knowledge they had obtained from various informational texts, and discussions arising from stories such as “How Do Dinosaurs Go to School?” written by Jane Yolen and Mark Teague.img_0928

As we reflect on all the learning that has occurred through this interest-led play, we are reminded how the students are effectively demonstrating the Ontario Catholic Graduate School Expectation of being reflective, creative and holistic thinkers who solve problems and make responsible decisions with an informed moral conscience for the common good.

We are off to a great start and thrilled to be able to share in this wonderful, exciting year ahead with all these little people as we watch them grow and develop to their fullest potential here in our Full Day Kindergarten Program!!
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Posted in Environment, Inquiry, Planning, Play Based Learning, Uncategorized

The Ball Maze In Action

In our most recent blog post, we shared with you a learning experience involving two boys planning to create a ball maze (link: Ball Maze Plan).  As an executive member of CAPE (Council of Associated Primary Educators- learn more about CAPE here), we choose this learning experience to highlight in CAPE’s latest webinar: Demonstrating Literacy and Mathematics Behaviour.  This experience allowed the executive team and members to reflect on the ball maze inquiry to analyze and deconstruct the learning.  This allowed us to delve deeper into the learning by considering what mathematical and literacy processes and behaviours could be identified in the drawings and clip.  To take you through a similar analysis experience (as we engaged in during the webinar), please first take a moment to review the Literacy Processes by Fontas and Pinnell, and the Mathematical Processes on the slides provided  here.   Next, view the children constructing their ball maze and consider how the children are demonstrating the learning behaviours.

 

Now we ask you to take a moment to reflect on this quote by Dr. Lillian Katz (a world-renowned early years educator)

“…I have observed over and over again that when young children are intellectually engaged in worthwhile investigations, they begin to ask for help in using academic skills-for example, writing and counting, in the service of their intellectual goals”

Take a moment to ask yourself, in what ways might this quote link to the ball maze inquiry clip? While observing children in play, what learning do you see and hear?

This post leaves you with an opporutnity to reflect on this learning experience.   In our next blog post, we hope to reveal some of the analysis of the learning through the comments and conversation from the webinar.

http://www.journeytogetherfdk.com

Gina Marion and Caroline Thornton