Preschool

The Gems have continued with their interest in birds this week exploring the trees next to the Preschool playground and commenting on the birds that they see.

Piper “I just saw two of the birds”

Eddie “it’s a white cockatoo and it’s making a loud noise hurting my ears”

Eden “That one over there is a rainbow lorikeet”

Ashton – “They keep looking down into that part of the tree”

The children have observed that there are two galahs nesting in the tree and that the cockatoos are coming around to look at their nests. Through their observations, many of the children including Meha, Matilda, and Piper sketched the birds, and it was interesting to note that they had numbers on the top of their drawings. When the educator enquired with the girls as to what the numbers were, they said “It’s how many birds that we can see”. This has now sparked interest in counting the birds that we see in the trees each day and looking at how many we can find.

Eddie, Eliza, Matilda, and Meha all used the iPad and binoculars to take photographs of the birds flying about on arrival at Preschool early in the morning. We then discussed how many birds we saw early in the day and Eddie said, “they might be flying to get their breakfast”. We have purchased more binoculars for bird watching and will continue to chart the number of birds we see each day and see where the children’s inquiry leads to next.

Another interest that is beginning to occur in the room is inquiry about monster trucks. Miles, Noah, Charlie, Jayden, and Flynn have all been exploring propulsion with ramps in the construction area as well as enjoying the monster trucks. As a provocation, a large tub was set up with monster trucks, ramps, and water bottles for the children to further explore propulsion and extend their interest in monster trucks.

Charlie said – “It’s making a track” commenting on the tyre patterns in the dirt

Jayden said – Mine needs a car wash (holding his monster truck under the spray bottle”

Miles “It just went all the way over there and did a backflip”

The children then used tape measures to see how far their monster trucks were travelling when they drove along the ramp. Many of the monster trucks were getting dirty in the muddy water so the children suggested that they make a car wash. They chose a large plastic tub and had discussions about what needed to be included in their car wash such as fountain rollers.

Charlie “It needs more bubbles “

Noah – “There are too many bubbles, it needs more water”

Through this learning the children are displaying they are confident and involved learners, collaborating with each other about how they will make the car wash, how they will measure the truck’s propulsion, and how they can make their trucks move faster.

The Treasure children have been extending their interest in building and constructing with the introduction of ‘MakeDo’. ‘MakeDo’ is a tool kit designed specifically for use with cardboard. The children use the tools to cut, join and create. More specifically, the Treasure children have been using this kit to transform their 2D plans into 3D creations. Through the children’s use of the tools, they have built upon their imaginations and creativity as they have been constructing a small house. The children used the sawing tool to cut windows and doors. They used the plastic screws to ensure the construction was structurally sound and to secure the addition of a roof. A great deal of collaboration and negotiation was observed.

Ryan ‘I think the roof needs a screw here. I will help you.’

Theodore ‘Yes and then the roof will fit on the top.’

Logan ‘You might need to cut it cause it is too big!’

Austin ‘You hold it and I will cut it with this.’ (referring to the sawing tool).

Madeline ‘I can hold it for you.’

Hayden ‘Now we need to put another screw in there. See the roof will come off if we don’t.’

Ryan ‘Oh yeah. I can do it!’

We are looking forward to seeing the children continue their work on their 3D construction and observing what additions they come up with next.

The Treasure room has also been introduced to ‘Edison’ and the wonderful world of robotics. We have previously had some lessons with Mr Youman during our extra-curricula activities in the school, however, have not yet applied robotics to our small group project work. This was our opportunity! Some of the children have been working on sending our baby chickens back to their mother hen at the farm and we wanted to introduce Edison to see if the children would consider the robot as a means of transportation. This was met with curiosity and excitement. The children sat quietly and were keen to know about the robot’s capabilities and basic coding techniques. The children used a series of barcodes to program the robot to follow a torch, move to short sharp noises, and follow a line. When the children watched the robot follow a black line, it became a game-changer!

Phoebe ‘I think we can make a big map and put a big black line down.’

Heidi ‘And the chickens can sit in it and we press the button.’

Hudson ‘Yeah and the chickens can just jump in and Edison will take them to their mum.’

The wonderful world of STEM is providing the children with a world of possibilities and extending their thought processes and problem-solving skills.

The Sparkles have been investigating areas of creativity and art through colour mixing experiences with a variety of mediums. They have been introduced to water colour pigment paints and have experimented with fine brushes, mixing paint and water to create different effects and layering of paints. We look forward to extending this through a large collaborative artwork to display.

Building and construction continue to be a strong interest in the room with the use of tools incorporated to further the Children’s learning and skills. Measurement and numbers have been added to this area to extend onto the learning and creative opportunities. Using tools such as saws, hammers, nails, and screws with foam, have allowed the children hands-on learning opportunities to experiment with trial and error and cause and effect.

After the Henny Penny Chicks have gone to their forever homes the group has extended their sense of belonging through caring for the fairies that are placed in the treehouse and outdoors to the baby dolls who needed washing along with their clothing. The Children have demonstrated a kind and caring nature looking after the dolls by gently washing them using cloths in a warm bath.

Pete Persistence has been introduced this week in the ’you can do it program’. We have discussed times in our room where Children are being persistent such as completing a puzzle, participating in a small group game or challenging themselves when they are feeling like they aren’t able to succeed.

 

Michelle Neylan
Preschool Director