Thanks to all the families who came to our ‘Playgroup’ visit today. The weather was beautiful. We hold this day once a term to help us build relationships with the up and coming families in our community. It also helps the children to gradually become familiar with the pre school environment before they actually start in the coming years. We hope you all enjoyed the scones, jam and cream we made for our shared morning tea today!
We made scones for authentic dough this week. We wanted to share them with our guests who were coming to play at 10:30am. Scones are different to bread dough in that you shouldn’t work the dough too much or they become tough. We make square and round shaped scones. Ingrid said that she had tasted scones before at Spoons (a restaurant in Swan Hill). This is a good example linking of experiences. Being able to link experiences creates strong brain connections. We can link Pre School experiences to things we have seen in the world around us or things we have seen in books or on television. Every link creates a more powerful brain.
Steven and Chayse were making towers with DUPLO. They decided to join their towers together to make a ‘giant tower’. They thought the tower was taller than me. I said, “Let’s measure.” When they measured, I was taller than the tower. They wanted to add to the tower until it became taller than me. We used words like measure, tall, short, taller, shorter and compare. It is important to use correct mathematical terms with children to promote their vocabulary development.
At our hospital visit this month we took along our new DUPLO sets (Emotions and Zoo) We had fun creating mini scenarios and we consolidated our knowledge of the animal names. Duplo is a great manipulative activity and it creates lots of conversation.
This week we made Spaghetti Bolognaise for our Authentic Dough Experience. First we made and kneaded the dough and then let it rest. When we were kneading we learnt to fold the dough in half and use the heal of our hand and press hard (past dough is quite tough to start with). A great activity to strengthen our hand muscles. While the dough was resting, we made the bolognaise sauce. The children wanted to taste the vegetable stock (disgusting was the general verdict!) Then we put our dough though the pasts machine twice. Once to roll it flat and once to turn it into spaghetti. This was a great workout for our arms. We while we were cooking we talked about Italy. Did you know that Peppa Pig went to Italy? She ate pizza in Italy. We all agreed that it was a very yummy lunch. There was lots of Notice, Nudge, Narrate in the cooking conversation.
Tenzi is a new dice game we are loving this week. In this game everyone has 10 x 6 sided die and a plastic cup. This idea is that everyone shakes and rolls (at the same time) and the first person with all die on the same number wins. Obviously this could take a long time and we only have so much patience (we are only 4 and 5!)- so we have modified the game (and I think added something extra) On our first roll we look at our dice and work out which number we have the most of. Then we keep those aside and return the remainder to the cup and keep rolling and sorting until all dice are the same number. We are playing this game with dotted dice, not the numeral dice. This helps us to learn to subitize the numbers to 6. We took this game to the hospital and it was a hit with the residents as well.
We started making Mondrian spider webs this week. The children drew the spider web with black texta and painted sections with blue, red and yellow. Steven loves mixing colours and enjoyed showing us how he had made ‘orange’. I used the Notice, Nudge, Narrate strategy to make the learning explicit.
Notice: Look I made another colour
Nudge: What colour is it?
Nudge: What colours did you mix to make orange?
Red and yellow
Narrate: You used read and yellow to make orange. Good work.
Conversational Reading is a 3a strategy we are using at Pre school every day with every child. it involves ‘reading’ a story with one or two children and using the “See, Show, Say’ prompts to encourage a back and forth conversation between the child and educator. For the older children we sometimes use the ‘Notice, Nudge, Narrate’ strategy to encourage back and forth conversation. Using this strategy encourages language development.
This week we went to Robinvale to see The Music Man at the Arts Centre. It was a “Caribbean ‘ inspired performance. We got to dance and sing along with the music. After the performance we went to the Railway Park Playground for a snack with the children from the Euston Pre School and then we went back to the Euston Pre School for a play and lunch. The children got to practice their friend making skills and they did an amazing job. We have invited the Euston Pre School back for Bush Kinder next term.
For Authentic Dough this week we made pizzas. The children helped prepare and choose their toppings. We have an adventurous group of eaters this year and this makes cooking fun for all. We really appreciate that the children will have a try. They know that if they don’t like it they can leave it on the side of their plate. The children are starting to recognise when they need more flour to stop the dough being sticky.