Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Sound Learning Group - Week 10

This was our last week to explore a new activity about sound.  We used the laptop to listen to animal sounds and think about how our body perceives sound.  The children used plastic cups, ear muffs, and covered their ears with their hands to explore this idea.  I asked them how they hear the sound and they would point to their ears.  Some children put on the ear muffs and talked about how they could still hear.  I asked them if they could hear better without them and they would say “yes”.  Other children tried to cover their ears with their hands.  When they used the plastic cups the children said “there is an echo”.  The children realized although they can hear through the ear muffs and when they cover their ears, when their ears are open they can hear clearly.  

Tunnel Learning Group - Week 11

The implementation of the eleventh inquiry involved children expanding on their exploration of the big idea "Where did it go?" The children wanted to study the motion of an object passing through another. In this activity the children explored tubes suspended from the ceiling. The children noticed that these tubes had several openings like last week’s tubes but some of the openings were blocked with tape. Some of the children tried to put a marble through an opening and said "It's not going in!" Some of the other children were confused about how to get the marble out of the tube. They experimented by shaking the tube and tilting the tube in different direction to get the marble out of an opening. The children had to problem solve to get the marbles out of the tubes. Some concepts the children learned during this activity include the concept of motion, cause and efface, fine motor skills and directionality.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Sound Learning Group - Week 9

November 27, 2012
Sound Through Solid Surfaces
We continued to explore sound travel but this week we investigated sound travel through solid surfaces.  Our materials were a wooden board, paper cups (some with the bottom and others without), and drum sticks.  The children used their prior knowledge when manipulating the materials.  They saw the cups and immediately put it up to their mouth and talked through it as well as listen through them.  They also played the drum stick on the board.  When I stood on one side and the kids on the other, I asked them what they hear while hitting the drum stick on the board; some children said they hear a noise coming from the board others said the noise was coming from the other side of the room.  Either way they knew the sound was coming from someplace other than where they were.  The children understand that sound can move, we have done many activities in which they have explored this concept.  Other children looked around the board to find the sound.  When they realized it was not coming from their side they looked over the board to find one of the other children hitting the board with a drum stick.  They made the connection between sound travel and grasped it can move through solids.  

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Scenery Learning Group - Week 10 part 2

Week of Nov 26th – 30th, 2012
At the end of this week, I decided to pull out our city landscape scene.  In this scene there are no people or animals.  The children were very interested in the tall buildings.  They want to reach as high as the buildings and they talked about how big they were.  Many of the children wanted to build with the blocks and tried to make buildings that were very tall like the ones on the wall.  We explored different types of buildings and ways we can build so that our structures were stable.  The children added people and cars to the play after a little bit of exploration.  They were very interested in making streets for the cars and sidewalks for the people to walk on.  I found this very interesting since we could not see any streets or sidewalks, but the children knew they were a part of the city.  There was a lot of problem solving while they determined how long and wide to make the different streets for different cars.

Next week we will be revisiting our learning group at group time and sharing with the rest of the class the things we learned.  This is always a great opportunity for the children to reflect on their experiences and learning.   

Scenery Learning Group - Week 10

Week of Nov 26th – 30th, 2012
The children were very interested in the dollhouse scene.  The house consisted of 4 rooms and 2 staircases.  There were a lot of things to look at in each room!  At first, many of the children just wanted to look at the scenes and take it all in.  They quickly noticed the girl sleeping in a bed.  Much of their play revolved around sleeping in the bed.  We talked a lot about their beds at home and what they do at bedtime.  They used the dollhouse people to act out sleeping and waking up.  Some of the children were especially interested in the stairs.  They made their dollhouse people climb up and down the stairs.  They talked about where the people were going and what they would do on the roof.  After we played pretend for a while, they went back to investigating all the different knick knacks in each room.  We decided to play I Spy and made it a game to find different objects.  Some of the children made connections between the objects they saw in the dollhouse to similar objects in our classroom or in their homes.

Next week I would like to explore a city scene.  Will they incorporate people? Cars? Blocks for buildings?  I am curious how much they will interact with a scene that does not involve animals or people in it.  Usually the first thing they relate to in the scenes are the animals and people…not the landscape.  How will they react when it is only landscape?