Tag Archives: sensory play

The Legend of Dragon Fruit, Part 2

We are currently developing the legend of the dragon fruit! Last week we examined a dragon fruit in class and all of the children asked what this strange “fruit” was. We wrote the word “dragon fruit” on the light table next to the fruit and started the exploration by sounding out the name of the food and going over the letters in it. 

This gave us an opportunity to read. To illustrate this and expand their understanding of letters, we would ask the children to think of words that sound similar to the word we were sounding out. So, for the “d” in dragon fruit, they came up with the words “dog” and “duck” because all three make the “d” sound.

After this activity, we asked the children why it’s called a dragon fruit. Their responses invoked deep level thinking and illustrated their curiosity: Continue reading

Posted in 2013, Pre Kinder | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Exploring Lollipops

One morning the children were exploring with play dough and various sized sticks. One student created a lollipop out of the play dough and stick, and the other children saw this and began creating the same thing. To encourage the study and for them to express their knowledge in a different way, the teachers arranged photos of lollipops, included with a sheet of paper with numbers listed on it, and markers. The children excitedly embraced the new materials and began drawing lollipops with the markers and tracing the outline of the numbers. The class also began discussing the characteristics of a lollipop (sweet, red, green, sugary, hard, round) and counting the numbers out loud.

IMG_8767 Continue reading

Posted in 2013, Pre School | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

City Island Story

There’s a close-knit group of boys in the school and they regularly work and play together. They have such a close bond and really work well together, so we always try to use that to push them to do more. For example: they enjoy spelling, counting, and writing more if they are together rather than doing something on their own. In our eyes, if this how the children prefer to learn (and if they are learning more) then we will always encourage the group participation!

Two boys in the group began constructing Lego boats and were pushing them around the room, dodging furniture and other obstacles on the floor. In order to encourage them to express their knowledge of boats, floating, buoyancy, and construction in another way (or another language, as we say in the Reggio Emilia approach), we gave the boys a piece of paper and some paint and asked them to tell us more about boats. Continue reading

Posted in 2013, Pre Kinder | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Fall Festival Projects

The song “Itsy Bitsy Spider” is a favorite among the infants in our classroom. To expand on their joy for this song, the teachers incorporated the jingle into one of the infants Fall Festival projects with the use of clay and paint! We gave children clay to sculpt their own “itsy bitsy spider” and black paint to explore with. The children thoroughly enjoyed molding the clay with their fingers, getting their hands full of paint, and many of them proceeded to cover their clay mold with the black paint. For an earlier blog on the importance of sensory play with infants, click here.

Clay play with infants is so important because it gives them an opportunity to squeeze, pinch, poke, pull, twist, and create with the molding material. Continue reading

Posted in 2013, Infants | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Puddle Play


One day after it rained the children went outside to play in the playground. The following videos show the children stomping in the mud, playing in the mud, feeling it between their toes, and making good ole’ fashion mud pies. While most adults would cringe at the fact that the children are playing in mud, it’s such an important video. These videos show what the children think they are doing, what they are actually doing, and what other children think the other children are doing. There are so many perspectives and opportunities for social interaction when playing in the mud!  Continue reading

Posted in 2013, Toddler 2 | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment