Welcome to Paula's Preschool and Kindergarten! My class blog is the place I share information about some of the fun learning activities we are doing at school. I hope to provide parents with insight into what we are doing, and why, and to share ideas with other early childhood educators. Please don't use the photos or text of this blog without permission, but please do use any ideas you find useful. Thank you for stopping by!

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Slugs, Snails, A Puppy Dog Tale, and What Things Are Made Of

We had some rain Wednesday evening, so when I was out with my dogs on Thursday morning, I wasn't too surprised to see a snail slithering along on its silvery slime trail.  I thought the kiddos at story time might be interested, and I had a spare plastic bag with me, so I picked it up and continued on my way.  Not 100 feet further along, I found a slug.  What a great opportunity for the children to compare a slug and a snail - so into the baggie it went too.

Back home I rescued a large plastic food container from the recycling bin, added some spinach leaves, and put the snail and slug in their new, temporary home, and off we went to the library.
Our plan for the day didn't involve slugs or snails, but young children are scientists, always up for something interesting to investigate!

This week we read books with an engineering theme, of children constructing and creating to make "wonderful things".  Our follow up was an engineering experience: deconstructing things!  We offered a lovely assortment of old electric and electronic items that had seen better days: broken radios, hair dryers, calculators, toys, toasters, computers and keyboards, some donated by our library patrons, some from staff, and still more from a local thrift shop. We offered real tools, and asked our families to support their children in exploring what is inside of all our gadgets.
Awesome STEAM activities for kids! See how some old junk was transformed into learning for this group of preschool children!

The children used screw drivers... 
Awesome STEAM activities for kids! See how some old junk was transformed into learning for this group of preschool children!
Awesome STEAM activities for kids! See how some old junk was transformed into learning for this group of preschool children!
Awesome STEAM activities for kids! See how some old junk was transformed into learning for this group of preschool children!
...pliers...
Awesome STEAM activities for kids! See how some old junk was transformed into learning for this group of preschool children!
...wire cutters...
Awesome STEAM activities for kids! See how some old junk was transformed into learning for this group of preschool children!
...tape measures...
Awesome STEAM activities for kids! See how some old junk was transformed into learning for this group of preschool children!
... and fingers to investigate.
Awesome STEAM activities for kids! See how some old junk was transformed into learning for this group of preschool children!
The most popular items were probably the cassette and VCR tapes that were unwound and explored.
Awesome STEAM activities for kids! See how some old junk was transformed into learning for this group of preschool children!
Children worked alone, in pairs or teams, with parents helping or watching, supervising to keep them safe, but allowing them to take the lead.
Awesome STEAM activities for kids! See how some old junk was transformed into learning for this group of preschool children!
 We found all kinds of cool bits and bobs inside of stuff, and even saved some of it for a future "build it" session.
Awesome STEAM activities for kids! See how some old junk was transformed into learning for this group of preschool children!
Afterwards, more than one parent mentioned that they were going to do this activity at home with their child the next time a gadget broke down.

So what about the slug and snail?  They were also a hit!  Some children wanted to look but definitely NOT TOUCH, others couldn't wait for a turn to hold them.
Awesome STEAM activities for kids! See how some old junk was transformed into learning for this group of preschool children!
 If you look closely at the slug, you can even see its breathing pore on the side of it's body!
Awesome STEAM activities for kids! See how some old junk was transformed into learning for this group of preschool children!

Next week we're going to have critters again.  Want a clue?  They'll be small and wiggly when they arrive, but after they eat and eat, they'll change into something beautiful.  Stay tuned for more learning fun!

No comments:

Post a Comment