Learning with lids in preschool

I love to collect bottle caps and lids of all colors and sizes to use in my classroom. Bottle caps and lids make a wonderful resource for art, math, games, and more! The children and I collected tons of lids over the past two years but because I was always in a hurry, I would toss them in a baggie or in a shoe box or in a jar and over time, they were never kept in one place. I finally took the time to gather up most of my bags and boxes and jars of lids and put them into one large plastic jar so we could explore lots of lids in my preschool classroom…

Learning with Lids by Teach Preschool

To be honest, this jar still didn’t hold all of the lids I have collected but by the time I filled the jar, I decided I would save the rest of the lids for a new adventure in learning with lids next year. For this year-end activity, I invited my students to begin our exploration by digging through all the lids and sort most of them by color…

Learning with Lids by Teach Preschool

Critical Thinking Skills and Decision-Making

Sorting lids by color may seem like a simple math process but for us it was a terrific opportunity to review color words and to use our critical thinking and decision-making skills. The children often had to stop and consider whether a lid had more red or more white and which color of paper it would fit best. The children also had to let me know if they came across a color that we didn’t have a piece of paper out to match like gray, purple, or pink…

Learning with Lids by Teach Preschool

Comparing and Contrasting

As the children sorted lids, they would stop and talk about what type of container a lid might have come from or they might talk about the size of a lid. Throughout their discussions, they were comparing and contrasting lids…

Learning with Lids by Teach Preschool

Numerical Thinking

Along the way, the children were naturally noticing which color of lids we had the most or least of. They were estimating which colors of lids would need to be stacked up higher because there were going to be far more of those lids than the other lids. The children noticed if there was one lid on the orange paper versus ten lids on the green. Mathematical thinking happens naturally as the children work on processes such as this…

Learning with Lids by Teach Preschool

Patience and Perseverance

Sorting all those lids took time too which required lots of patience and perseverance. The children were free to come and go all throughout the day but they knew that by the end of the day, every lid needed to be sorted so our sorting project would be complete…

Learning with Lids by Teach Preschool

Cooperation

Sorting lids also required the children to work cooperatively as they found the process went much smoother if everyone worked together to make sure the lids were sorted onto the right color of paper by the end of our day…

Learning with Lids by Teach Preschool

Spacial Awareness

By the time most of the lids were sorted on each piece of paper, the children had to do some rearranging and stacking of the lids to help them fit on the paper. We could have easily taken out a second sheet of the same color of paper, but the children were able to make the adjustments and challenging of making the lids fit onto a single sheet of paper per color of lid…

Learning with Lids by Teach Preschool

Teamwork

Teamwork is all about working together to accomplish a goal. This process was all about teamwork. By the end of our day, the team had to step it up a bit and finish our goal of sorting every single lid and they did a remarkable job!

Learning with Lids by Teach Preschool

Attitude

One of the things I look for when considering if I think children are ready for kindergarten is that can-do attitude and the joyful willingness to jump in and participate with others to accomplish a goal. At any time, one of the children could have said that this process was boring or that they didn’t want to participate but these kids showed each other and me how they have a can-do attitude! …

Learning with Lids by Teach Preschool

Time Management and Self-Regulation

As you can see in some of the photos, there were other processes going on throughout the classroom that included the use of our lids. In the process of sorting lids throughout the day, the children were also exploring those other processes. They were free to manage their own time and regulate how to spend their time. I certainly could have set up the lid sorting process with no other choices so the kids wouldn’t have anything else to do but sort lids but part of the experience in my classroom is to always give the children opportunities to regulate and manage their own choices and time as they get things done that is on the agenda for that day…

Learning with Lids by Teach Preschool

I will be sharing more on how we continued the process of learning with lids because we definitely had lots of lids to explore!

Learning with Lids by Teach Preschool

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Parachute basics: The hello game

The parachute is a wonderful way to introduce your students on how to work together to achieve a common goal. My students played the hello game as we learned the basics of how to use a parachute…

Parachute Basics by Teach Preschool

Anytime I introduce the parachute to a new group of students, we start with just the parachute. No balls or other extras so we can focus on how to hold on to the parachute and go up and down together…

Parachute basics: The hello game by Teach Preschool

First we begin our basic parachute training camp by sitting around the parachute and holding on to our strap. I like to encourage the children to use two hands to hold on so that they have a better grip and to stay facing forward to the parachute but I am not a stickler – just an encourager…

Parachute basics: The hello game by Teach Preschool

Once the children get their spot and have a grip on the parachute, we wave the parachute up and down with small movements then stop. Then bigger movements and stop.  I don’t want to spoil their fun but in order to move onto the bigger fun, I have to help the children learn to listen to me while they are waving the parachute or we will not be able to successfully work together. Next, we get up to our feet and wave our parachute again…

Parachute basics: The hello game by Teach Preschool

This is about the time things will start to fall apart and you have to reel them in a bit and start again. It’s pretty funny to see us all wonky trying to wave that parachute together and not let go. It is so hard not to want to run under or let go but with a little coaching from me, the children got the hang of it and we were ready for the big finale and that was when we played the “Hello” game…

Parachute basics: The hello game by Teach Preschool

The children start with hands and arms down low. Then we all lift up together and shout “Hello” to each other under the parachute. Sometimes, I use the words “Pop, Pop, Popcorn” and we lift on popcorn and other times I count “1, 2, Hello!”  This group rocked at the hello game and wanted to change the word “hello” to “hot dog” so we shouted “hot dog!”…

Parachute basics: The hello game by Teach Preschool

Lots of giggles and funny new words were added to our game. One more time without the balls, then I think we can begin the next phase of parachute boot camp…

Parachute basics: The hello game by Teach Preschool

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Five simple activities that promote teamwork!

In the preschool classroom, life is all about learning how to work with others and this is an especially challenging proposition for young children. To promote teamwork or the three C’s (communication, collaboration, and cooperation) in a fun and inviting way, I like to come up with creative games or art activities that my students can do together…

Five fun activities to promote teamwork by Teach Preschool

Of course, as young children play in dress-up or blocks, they are naturally building their skills for cooperation, communication, and collaboration but for today, I thought I would share some activities that I prepared for the children to do together so that we could spend time focused on working together as a team…

Large Group Maze

Mrs. Courtney created this amazing maze in a large box for us and the children explored the maze both as a class and with partners. The goal was to get the car or marble from one end of the maze to the other by working together to move the box up and down or side to side….

Five activities to promote teamwork by Teach Preschool

Bouncing Balls and Boxes

In this activity, the children had to roll the ball around the box or try and keep it centered in the middle of the box by once again, working together to tilt the box or hold it steady…

Five activities to promote teamwork by Teach Preschool

Parachute Play

Parachute play is all about teamwork. Lifting the parachute up and down all together so that we can make the balls fly high off the chute requires us to count together, lift together, and not let go of our part of the parachute in the process…

Five activities to promote teamwork by Teach Preschool

Large Group Murals

Working together to color, paint, or in some way create something together also gives us the opportunity to promote the three C’s. While the children were coloring in the big circle, they had to communicate with each other about any spaces that still needed colored in, work together to color side by side, and make decisions on the direction or style of coloring they chose to do along the way. I noticed that by coloring together, the children also modeled for each other different coloring techniques or preferences…

Five activities to promote teamwork by Teach Preschool

Circle Songs and Games

And of course, lots of games or songs where we gather together to enjoy activities like “The Farmer and the Dell” are an important part of building community and teamwork…

Five activities to promote teamwork by Teach Preschool

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Links to Grow on

How to make a large Maze by Teach Preschool

Stack the Box Relay Race by Teach Preschool

Weaving through a Rainbow by Teach Preschool

Patterning with partners and lids

Patterning is not a new concept for our children.  It is a process that we have been exploring throughout the school year, so our children were very familiar with the process of patterning before we introduced this activity.  However, patterning with partners is a relatively new process for our current students…

Patterning with partners by Teach Preschool

For this patterning activity, we used many, many plastic lids of various colors and sizes.  We invited the children to sit at the tables and whoever they happened to be sitting next to became their partner in this patterning process.  We gave each pair of children a long sentence strip.  Any long strip of paper will work.  Just be sure it is long enough to make a nice sized pattern, because once the children get the hang of patterning, they will want to keep on going as long as possible…

Patterning with partners by Teach Preschool

Deborah encouraged the children to listen and work cooperatively with their partners to create their patterns.  The children began this process excitedly by quickly lining up lids to fill their sentence strips.  Many of the partners truly had beautiful rows of lids, but no real patterns just yet…

Patterning with partners by Teach Preschool

Deborah and I then began going around the room, working with each set of partners.  We would tell them, “I see you have a very colorful row of lids here.  Do you think we can make a pattern out of it?”  We would then start at the beginning of their row and address the first two lids.  We would point out the colors of those first two lids and say, “I see you have an orange lid and then a red lid.  What color should come next?”  In working with each pair of children, we were encouraging them to take their time to better understand the concept…

Patterning with partners by Teach Preschool

There were moments when our young partners found the process frustrating,  Deborah and I showed the partners how to ask their partner which lid could come next.  We also showed them how they could share their space on the sentence strip or they could create separate rows.  Soon they were all working together to create patterns out of their lids…

Patterning with partners by Teach Preschool

When children work cooperatively, they help to shape each other’s understanding…

Patterning with partners by Teach Preschool

A simple activity like patterning with lids becomes more meaningful because the children are working with their friends toward a common goal.  The results are a thing of beauty…

Patterning with partners by Teach Preschool

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Links to grow on: 

Post-it note patterns by Little Preschool on the Prairie

Patterns with shapes and colors by Crayon Freckles

Making apple patterns in preschool by Teach Preschool

 

By | February 3rd, 2013|Categories: Mathematics|Tags: , , , , , |4 Comments