Throughout the day in Autahi there are many learning through play times, also known as Discovery time. During this time children can choose what they'd like to do. They choose from a variety of table top provocations that are related to our literacy, maths and inquiry learning or they can choose to play with the kinetic sand, the building materials, making materials, outside fitness and PE materials and lots more. During this time I often see children incorporating what we are learning together through their play. Here are some examples of what children are currently choosing to do and some of the learning links.
Socio-Dramatic Play: Vets
Since the Vets area has been introduced we have had vets and patients non-stop. Children are showing their natural Kaitiaki as they carefully mend a kiwi's broken beak, perform surgery on a dog with a sore leg and apply bandages galore to all of the teddies we have. This is a further exploration of our inquiry into looking after our environment. Many of us have pets at home and this role-play allows us to show care for animals.
These guys are sitting in the waiting room waiting their turn with their sick pets, while the vets work on other animals.
The learning links:
• Social Science: Understand that people have different roles and responsibilities as part of their participation in groups.
- Health and PE: Identity, sensitivity, and respect • Demonstrate respect through sharing and co-operation in groups.
- Key Competencies: Relating to others. Sharing, taking turns, actively listen, recognise different points of view, negotiate, and share ideas.
- Writing: Recognise how to shape texts for a purpose and an audience (they begin to understand that a chart for a doctor is very different writing than a letter to a friend or a story).
The Nurse is filling out the chart, deciding what is wrong with the animal and choosing what will best improve its health. Not only are the children using their imagination, recognising roles within the community, showing care and Kaitiaki, but also they are exploring literacy through symbols, pictures and writing.
We have been creating our own string of beads with our names and colours and beads we like. We are creating a new Autahi 2018 Mobile and each of us will put our string of beads on to show that we are part of the class.
Reading and spelling our own names
Fine motor development which is crucial for writing
Managing ourselves to stay focussed on a learning task and concentrate to complete (This competency is associated with self-motivation, a “can-do” attitude, and with students seeing themselves as capable learners.)
The kids love to play with the kinetic sand. They create with it and watch as it changes form from a solid shape to individual pieces of sand. These guys were using bulldozers and trucks and animals and plants. They sorted and organised the animals into groups and they used bulldozers and tools to build and shape their sand.
Visual arts: • Explore a variety of materials and tools and discover elements and selected principles.
Science. The living world: • Recognise that there are lots of different living things in the world and that they can be grouped in different ways.
Science. Properties and changes of matter: • Observe, describe, and compare physical and chemical properties of common materials
Key competencies: Relating to others is about interacting effectively with a diverse range of people in a variety of contexts. This competency includes the ability to listen actively, recognise different points of view, negotiate, and share ideas.
Not to mention the oral language and creative thinking that is being developed!
Maths and Number Exploration
This is one of the provocations out in the room. We have been doing lots of number talks during guided maths time where we explain how we can see different numbers. This is an independent game to consolidate that knowledge. They work together to match the numeral, tens frame and finger patterns.
These guys chose the large playing cards off the maths shelf and made up their own game. They were finding cards that matched. They were sorting by suit and by number as well. This was fantastic consolidation of learning we are doing together.
This is only a snapshot of the types of things that happen in a day in Autahi. You can see that the NZ curriculum is being explored and learned in many different ways and contexts. Learning through play and providing choice allows the children to have fun, think creatively and be agents in their learning!