5-Day: We are All the Same, We are All Different
As the 5-Day class winds down the year, we are taking a look at who we are. One of the books we read this week is We are All the Same, We are All Different. As we connected our daily activities to this story, the children also began to look at each other to consider our own similarities and differences. Through our art activities, we realized, yes, we all have eyes, but, not all the same color. Through measurements, yes, we all can be measured in inches and pounds, but, we are not all the same. Through literacy and examining our names, yes, we all have letters in our names, and some even share the same, but not in the same order. Physically, yes, we all have fingers and thumbs, but some are smaller or larger than others. And, through social studies, yes, we all have families, but in different configurations.
As the children thought about themselves, what makes them special and individual, we provided new materials for them to explore and stretch their thoughts/ideas as well as manipulative for them to be creative problem solvers. For a few days, the children explored magnets at a table. We heard many conversations about, "why does this side push away [repel], but this side connect [attract]". When using some of the other materials provided, we also heard comments such as: "look how many paper clips I have", "I can make the balls move without touching them", "I can make it go up [vertical] and sideways [horizontal]". Our goal was to encourage their natural curiosity in a self-discovery mode.
To this end, we put out gears at the table later on in the week, first for free exploration, then with challenges, such as: How many gears can you get to spin at once? Can you build them sideways? What does this piece do? Can they go on top of each other and how? Then, the discovery table became a marble run with cooperative play. The children had to listen to each other as they created a maze for the marbles to run through; they had to share the marbles and they had to count them to make sure we didn't lose any. There were many attempts, many successes and there was lots of excitement.
Gilly and Lilly continue to grow bigger, with longer legs each day. The children make a focused observation each week in their science journal. We are thrilled that they are growing, but curious when their tails will shrink.
This week, we are observing a lot of big feelings, which is something we expected to see. The children know changes are coming and this can bring some insecurity. Change can be both exciting and scary. We continue to support them in verbalizing their emotions and saying that they will have new friends, while still having their old friends; and they will be safe and loved. We tell them the teachers are also having big feelings, too, and it's okay.
5-Day will take advantage of the nice weather on Tuesday by starting the day on the playground at 8:45. This should be a fun start to our day!
Cathy and Kristi