A well picked project is a project that motivates and excites the children. Each day, the children (and the staff!) should be so excited to learn the newest information or role play the information they have already learned. We turn our entire classroom into our project. For instance, during our tree project (click here to find out more!) the children turned our poles into trees and we created a grocery store called Hy-Vee during our Hy-Vee project. With this project, we have added extra tables, materials from Happy Joe’s, and chairs to create our own restaurant. The children have been discussing the types of pizzas and have been incorporating this in their play as we learn more about the restaurant.
I am lucky to be a part of a center which has a nature explore certified outdoor space. Outside, we have items available to use to extend and continue our projects outside. To help enhance this current project, we have picnic tables, art materials, a house furnished with tables, chairs, dishes, pans, and tablecloths, and a Mud Kitchen. For those of you unfamiliar with a Mud Kitchen, we have created an area outdoors where the children can experiment, use, and play with mud. The area has materials including dishes, pans, bowls, whisks, spades, ladles, and cabinets. One morning, several girls rushed over to the Mud Kitchen. Several minutes later, I watched these same girls walk over the house which is near the Mud Kitchen area. “Does anyone want anything from Happy Joe’s?” Several children made their orders and the girls returned to the Mud Kitchen. The girls used water and mud to create pizzas, baked them in their oven, and then called over their peers to join them for pizza.