Showing posts from January, 2016


We noticed some of our younger friends struggling while attempting to draw buildings in our community. We thought to simplify it by setting up a provocation that invited the children to paint buildings in a different way. 
We talked about the different shapes we can see in buildings; triangles, rectangles and squares and  the number of sides each has. Using the side of corrugated cardboard and paint the children created lines and shapes that came together to look a lot like buildings. 

Our Community

After talking about maps we turned our attention to our town and introduced the word community. "what is a community?" One of our friends told us, " a community is a group of people living together." Another said, " it's a group of people working together". We talked about our favorite places in our town and agreed that these were places everyone in our town shared. Some of our class wanted to create another kind of map of our town. This one with some specific places on it. With paper, pencil and crayon they drew our school, the mall, Paynes prairie, the clock tower, and the football stadium.  We put our new map on the wall in our studio. Have a look!


This past week we gave the children multiple opportunities to create buildings. Because we have been talking about  community we have had many conversations about the buildings in our community. We set up some provocations that invited the children to construct 3-dimensional buildings. We provided permanent and impermanent opportunities to explore a variety of different materials. Each activity  required the child to construct their building in a different way, sometimes with a whole different perspective.

Our Map Of Gainesville

We gave the children white crayons and asked them if they wanted to trace over the lines on a map of Gainesville. It started out as a fine motor experience and another opportunity to talk about maps, specifically our town. We recognized that the roads were lines on the map, and it also became another way to revisit the subject of lines. We set out water color paints and the children painted the map with beautiful, bright colors. The roads stood out because the crayons under the paint "resisted" the water color paint, creating a cool effect. When the paint was dry we set out glue and different colored yarns and the children measured and cut the yarn, and glued them on to the roads on the map. We had conversations about how the roads "intersect" . We noticed that some roads were long, some short, some were straight and some were curvy.  The next step was to find objects that could represent buildings in our town. We always have gems and color tiles and similar objects in…

Making a 3-D Map

We changed up our block area a bit this week. We put road maps on the wall and added blocks that we taped lines on with the hope that the children would think they looked like roads.  We already created 2 dimensional maps so we thought it might be an interesting idea to provoke the idea of 3 dimensional maps. On two different days the children were very involved in making a town. They made different sections. A neighborhood, a downtown with tall buildings, a forest with a camping area, and an airport. They  made a lake and a river that needed a bridge.  We introduced the idea of "symbols"by asking them what we could use to represent each area in our town.

Drawing Maps

After tracing the Earth we spent some time "going places" with google Earth. 
We started a conversation about maps. We asked the question "what is a map?" A friend told us,"whenever you need to go somewhere you check on the map." We read books about maps and looked at maps of Florida and Gainesville.  Some children wanted to draw maps of their very own. Someone drew a map to their house, another to their friends house.

Our Solar System

After reading a book about the Earth we got curious about our solar system.  After reading a book and having a class discussion some of the children decided they wanted to draw the solar system. We provided black paper and oil pastels and the children created beautiful, colorful solar systems.

We all live on a beautiful planet called Earth

Last semester we talked a lot about nature. "What is nature?" Throughout the semester we revisited this question and started to come to the understanding that nature is all living (and some non- living) things that live on this Earth.  We read a book about the the Earth on our first day back from our holiday break. We set up an invitation for the children to trace the outline of the Earth on our light table. They traced the continents, and talked about land vs water. We also found what we were tracing on our globe. While the children traced we talked about  things we already know about the Earth.  Things like, "it's in space" and "it's round". We also realized how many things we didn't know about the Earth and would like to know. 


One of our friends has been counting up a storm the past few days, which inspired this counting activity. This activity focused on building counting skills, number recognition, and one-to-one correspondence. Many preschoolers may be able to identify a 3 but they don’t understand what 3 means. This activity had our children looking at the numbers 1 - 10 and then counting out pebbles until they reached the assigned amount.  This counting interest has also led us to introduce a few new number related activities. Sand paper numbers, number beads and our hundred board.