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Archive for March, 2011

Coconut Tree

After about two weeks of investigations, sketching, and learning about the coconut tree.  The children wanted to represent their knowledge by creating two coconut palm trees in our classroom.  One child created the plan of how to make the coconut trees and what materials needed to be gathered to begin the representing.  Kara documented all of her ideas and then the child and I went into the storage room to gather the materials.

Once in the classroom, the children began the representing!  They started by building up blocks around the poles so that the children could reach the top of the poles.  The then used tan colored paper to cover both poles.  The children used fine motor skills and based on their abilities cut the tape with scissors, tore it, and/or helped a peer in this process.  During this process, several children worked on other tasks.  Some children worked on rolling model magic into small balls.  Another group, spent time rolling or painting the model magic brown.  A child (3.3 years old) spent time in the back of the room working with the green paper and had a book near him for reference.  Kara observed him for several minutes and then asked him what he was doing.  He shared he was making slits in the green paper to make the green paper look like the palm leaves in the book. 

A child who had been to Florida before remembered that coconuts and the bark of a coconut tree had a different texture to it.  The children decided to add a thick twine to our poles and some of our coconuts. 

You can encourage children to represent by offering them a treasure chest.  A treasure chest is a box of items that we use for representing.  We started by having the children add items they thought were important to creating various items.  We continue to add as our box becomes empty.  We have a list below but the opportunities are endless!  Please let us know what is in your treasure chest if you have started one!

Some items in our treasure chest include:

  • twine
  • string
  • bark
  • twigs
  • easter grass
  • burlap
  • wax paper
  • foil
  • wire

We continue investigating….

-AIH

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