Blog-16th to 20th Sep 2019

Unit of inquiry

Moving further with the unit on senses, the gustatory sense (sense of taste) was explored using various  solutions intended for tasting. Students were given an opportunity to taste four basic flavours: sweet (Roohafza), sour (lemonade), salty (butter milk) and bitter (decaffeinated coffee solution).

A formative assessment based on olfactory sense was taken with a sorting activity. Students were given cut-outs of pictures in a mixed pool (like a dirty water closet, garbage bin, incense sticks, rose etc.). They used their thinking skills to segregate the pictures and paste them under correct heading.

Circle Time

An interesting learning engagement was undertaken, wherein they had to pick  a greeting of their choice like, ‘a hi five’, ‘a fist bump’, ‘a hug’, ‘a handshake’, ‘an elbow bump’, ‘thumbs up’, ‘perform a jig’. This cheery morning activity helped in encouraging positive interactions between students to grow into  responsive individuals.

As a part of Early years skill-building programme, social grace and courtesy lessons were reinforced by the facilitators, for this helped to build social skills and self–esteem amongst students.

As an extension to familiarising them to Montessori Brown stairs and Pink cubes, construction of a wall was introduced to the students by using the  material. Students observed and then made a wall using various combinations, for this helped in enhancing their thinking skills.

SEL (Social Emotional Learning)

The concept of relating thoughts with behaviour was introduced to the students with the help of a role play which was followed by showing a ‘Story bot’ video. Later, they brainstormed on how can they feel better if they feel sad about something. They tried to make a connection between their actual feelings and how they responded, for this helped them to inculcate a deeper sense of self awareness.

Language

Reinforcement of the sounds ‘a’, ‘o’ and ‘m’ were done using sand tray, audio-visuals and phonic songs.

Language was integrated with Art, wherein students pasted pictures associated with the sound ‘m’ – monkey, mango, mop, mask, mat, mouse, mushroom, milk and mittens, for recapitulating the sound.

As a part of vocabulary enhancement, students learned the names of basic tastes like sweet, sour, salty and bitter.

Unit of inquiry was integrated with language, wherein students enjoyed listening to a story about the little koelfinding his song, written by ‘Kunal Kundu’. The story was presented using props and an audio-visual tool. Students learned about the chirping sounds made by different birds.

Math

The Montessori material ‘Drawing insets’ were introduced to the students to hone directionality while holding the pencil. They practiced tracing 2D shape triangle using the triangle inset. Further, they coloured inside the triangle to hone their pincer grip.

Students were introduced to the concept of few and many, using various objects from the classroom, which was followed by viewing of a power point presentation. A fun activity was carried out where they had to stick cut-outs of a flower on three different baskets. These baskets with flowers were a pictorial representation of few, many and none; for this helped in understanding quantification.

Math was integrated with the unit of inquiry, wherein students tasted various drinks like roohafza, lemon water, buttermilk, and decaffeinated coffee solution and identified the taste as sweet, salty, sour or bitter by using their gustatory sense. Later, they created a ‘Pictograph’ by pasting pictures to represent the taste that appealed to them and moved towards analysis of data from the graph.

Art

As students are in the process of exploring the shape ‘circle’, fingerprinting was done on the shape to  craft a tree.

Physical education

Students learned the handstand. As handstand is technically a weight bearing exercise, it will help them to strengthen their bones, spine, shoulders, arms and wrists and their overall muscle development. They were also involved in different types of rotational and stretching exercises.

Music                                                                                                

The students sang ‘Insy-Winsy Spider’ in English and Hindi. They also explored various instruments in the music room and learned their names. 

Dance

Dance lessons focused on development of motor skills where students practiced coordinated jumping on different music. The use of a hoopla hoop while dancing was also introduced to them.

Library

To mark the birthday of much loved children’s author ‘Julia Donaldson’, students were read one of her popular books titled ‘The Detective Dog’. The story is  a fast-paced celebration of books, reading, libraries and the relationship between a little boy and his rather special dog.

There was once a dog with an amazing sense of smell who was known far and wide as Detective Dog ‘Nell’. He used to live with his master Peter. The dog’s ever-sniffing nose was always hard at work solving mysteries and finding all of Peter’s lost toys. But Nell had other talents too. Nell, the dog used to go to school  every Monday with Peter to especially listen to the stories being read. One day when they arrived at school, they noticed that all the books in the classroom had been stolen. Luckily, Nell, the detective dog got on the job to sniff out the lost books. It used his sniffing powers to find out the culprit who apparently was a book lover too. At the end, the thief was taken to the school library to sit and read numerous books. This suspense-filled drama, written in rhyming sentences, builds on the joy that books  bring. The sudden entry into a library filled with the smell of hundreds of books waiting to be discovered is an apt reminder that public libraries should not become relics of the  days gone by but must be visited for the love of reading.

Freeplay

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Blog-9th to 13th Sep 2019

Unit of inquiry

To further reiterate understanding of the olfactory sense, students sniffed to compare pleasant from unpleasant smell with an activity. Students were asked to smell  a lemon leaves, basil leaves, rose petals, baby talc, a tube of winter cream, a bottle of body lotion, an onion, garlic cloves, some stale vegetables, and a banana peel. They were then asked to sort various pictures under the headings ‘pleasant or unpleasant odour’.

For the refinement of their olfactory sense, students were asked to smell different things contained in jars, for this helped to differentiate between odour and fragrance. They then used their sense of smell to sort and pair pleasant fragrance and unpleasant odours.

A formative assessment based on visual and auditory senses was taken with a sorting activity. Students were given cut-outs of pictures in a mixed pool (like guitar, bell, rattle, fish, rainbow etc.). They used their thinking skills to segregate the pictures and paste them under correct heading.

Circle time

As a part of Early years skill-building programme, social grace and courtesy lessons were demonstrated by the facilitators with the help of a role play. The role play depicted different social scenarios which included – saying ‘please’ and ‘thank you’, greeting politely, using handkerchief while coughing/sneezing and politely interrupting a preoccupied person using ‘excuse me’; for this helped the students to build upon their social skills and self –esteem.

Students were introduced to ‘pegging’ clothes on a wooden stand, for it aimed at enhancing their pincer grip and concentration.

Language

The sound ‘m’ was introduced using picture cards and objects from the class environment.

Language was integrated with art with a mouse creation. Students printed within the outline of letter ‘m’ through a sponge dabbing craft, while reinforcing the phonic sound ‘m’.

Math

The concept of seriation from big to small was reinforced with a sorting activity, wherein students were given various objects which they arranged from big to small.

Reinforcement of estimation and counting was addressed using the technique of visual subitizing.

Students were also introduced to the positions ‘up and down’ through an activity wherein they were taken outside and asked to observe objects in the sky and on the ground. They also climbed up and down the staircase, as a fun activity to comprehend the concept better.

Art

The students explored the printing technique and the colour green. They created dots on a cut out of a circle through finger printing.

Physical education

Students learned some basic yoga poses and practiced stretching exercises, for they aimed to improve their overall wellbeing. Yoga develops physical flexibility and muscle strength, initiates coordination and concentration.

Music

Students were given an opportunity to sing individually on the microphone. They sang ‘Old Mc Donald’ and ‘Insy-Winsy Spider’ in English and Hindi. The also played a steady beat using the shakers.

Dance

Dance lessons focused on development of directions. Students practiced identical movements on both sides using different music beats. The posture of jazz hands was also reinforced.

Library

Students were read Anupa Lal’s Hindi story, ‘Mere Palang ke neeche’. The story about a young boy who used to wake up at night to drink water made interesting reading. One night, he imagined some strange things lurked under his bed thereby feeling scared. He called his mother as he thought that there was a tiger under his bed. His mother saw and pulled out the tiger, after which they got to know that it was his jacket with tiger stripe print. The story concluded with the boy wearing his jacket while going for a jungle safari. The story taughtstudents to be fearless and courageous.

Freeplay

Blog-2nd Sep – 6th Sep 2019

Unit of inquiry

Taking the unit further, students were taken for a nature walk around the school garden to carry out an inquiry into different things they could smell in their surroundings. They used their olfactory sense to smell herbs such as Tulsi leaves, Curry leaves, Hibiscus flower and leaves of the Lemon tree.

Refinement of senses (auditory) was done using a ‘sound boxes’that made varying decibels of sound for  rice, pulses, stone, cotton, and bits of papers contained in them. Students listened to the different sounds and identified the material from the sound boxes. Later, they were given an opportunity to listen and pair the similar sound boxes, for this aided in refining their auditory skills.

Circle time

As a part of Early Years, skill-building programme, students were introduced to the Montessori Brown stairs, which allowed them to develop visual differentiation between dimensions (thickness). This further enhanced their visual perception, refined their voluntary motor movement and muscle grip.  

Students engaged in a wide range of activities such as building blocks, puzzles, outlining of various shapes with colourful stones, for this helped to enhance their gross and fine motor skills and aided sensory development.

A role play was conducted by the teachers to reiterate magic words to build upon social skills and self-esteem. As a follow up, students were asked a few questions:

  • What do you say if somebody gives you something?
  • What will you say if you hurt somebody?
  • What do you say when you want something?
  • What do you say if you need to  interrupt a conversation?

Language

Recap of sounds ‘a’ and ‘o’ was done by tracing the sandpaper letters. This activity helped in learning the formation of the letters as a prelude to writing.

Language was integrated with Art, wherein reinforcement of sound ‘o’ was undertaken with a craft activity

Language was integrated with Unit of Inquiry with a story ‘The 5 senses, sight’ written by the author ‘Maria Ruis’ . The book was illustrated with bold and rich colours, for it aimed to capture the imagination of a child.

Math

Reinforcement of estimation and counting was addressed using the technique of visual subitising.

Students were also introduced to ‘Timeline of a day’ using picture cards arranged in a sequence. They made connection with the activities undertaken by them from morning to night, for this helped in building  their understanding of the concept of time.

The concept of seriation from big to small was reinforced with an art activity integrating it with the theme on ‘sustainability’. The activity included sorting pictures of various sizes of recycled cloth bags and students were encouraged to use such bags.

Students were introduced to a learning tool namely the ‘light table’ which allowed them to enthusiastically place coloured gemstones on the outlines of different shapes seen under the light.

SEL (Social and Emotional Learning)

The six different emotions were reinforced this week namely happy, angry, sad, worried, frightened and surprised with the help of flash cards and songs. A role-play was also conducted to recap the same.Students expressed and discussed their current feeling with their peers.  As an extension to the activity, they identified the emoticons and imitated these emotions using their facial expressions.

Art

Student’s explored printing technique and created colourful dots by  printing with their fingers.

Art was also integrated with language with an  alligator’s picture. Students imprinted green dots using their finger  on the picture, while reinforcing the phonic sound ‘a’.

Physical education

Students were introduced to an obstacle course race. They were involved in different activities like jumping hoops, running in a zig zag motion, and picking up cones. This helped in improving their gross and fine motor skills, balance and manipulative skills.

Music

Students listened to different musical instruments and identified the percussion instruments. Further, they explored various percussion instruments likedamru and drums.

They were given an opportunity to sing ‘I love you, you love me’ in a group.

Dance

Dance lessons focused on development of directions. Students practiced identical movements on both sides using different music. The posture of jazz hands was also introduced to them.

Library

Students were read an award-winning picture book ‘The Gruffalo’ written by the author ‘Julia Donaldson’. The story  about a mouse who walks through the woods  unfolded in two phases where the mouse used clever tricks to evade danger. On his way, the mouse encountered several dangerous animals like a fox, an owl, and a snake. Each of these animals, clearly intended to eat the mouse, invited him back to their home for a meal. The Mouse invented an imaginary monster, a Gruffalo, a fearsome creature with terrible claws,  tusks and  teeth in his  jaws. Description of the fierce Gruffalo  scared the fox, the owl, and the snake away. The story took a turn when the monster of his imagination appeared right before him in the woods and said, “You’ll taste good on a slice of bread!”

In the end, the clever mouse comes up with a strategy to convince the Gruffalo that he was the scariest creature in this deep dark wood. The mouse outsmarting all its predators used his thinking skills to fool the Gruffalo to make a very satisfying story for children.

Blog-26th Aug – 30th Aug 2019

Unit of Inquiry

To further deepen their understanding of the ongoing unit on senses, students focussed on their sense of hearing. They listened to different musical instruments and learned about the specific sounds they produce. Further, they played the instruments (guitar, triangle bells, cymbal, rattle, mouth organ and xylophone) and compared between the sounds that each instrument made; for this helped them to understand the importance of listening intently.

This learning engagement was further extended with the students taking a ‘sound tour’ around school. They loved answering questions like ‘can you hear the clock, the wind, noise from the adjacent classroom, people breathing or coughing, noisy cars, flying aeroplanes, footsteps, emergency vehicles, any music?’

A blindfold activity also honed their auditory senses. Different sounds were played on the smartboard that emulated the dog bark, a rocket being launched, an aeroplane taking off, a crow crowing etc. and students were  asked to identify these sounds without looking at the smartboard.

Circle Time

The essential agreements were reinforced with respect to pictographic references. These references were of their photographs that depicted these agreements such as walking in a straight line, washing hands before and after meals, keeping personal belongings in cubby holes and stacking the plates after eating.

Use of magic words like thank you, sorry, excuse me etc. was reiterated with the students in order to facilitate a positive learning environment. A discussion on learner profile attributes was undertaken between the students and the facilitator. They were made to understand the importance of being ‘principled’ and ‘caring’.

Language

Students were introduced to the sound ‘o’ through various picture cards, audio visuals and objects from the class environment. They traced sandpaper letter ‘o’ to understand the correct formation and directionality as a prelude to letter writing.

Language was integrated with Art, wherein reinforcement of sound ‘o’ was undertaken. The students coloured within the outline of the sound ‘o’ and pasted pictures associated with the sound such as orange, octopus etc.

Language was also integrated with unit of inquiry, wherein they sang and enacted a few songs like ‘Head, shoulders, knees and toes’ and the ‘5 senses song’ in order to reinforce body parts. Further, they were made aware of oneself to form a connection with the environment.

Math

Math was integrated with Art, wherein students coloured the outline of numbers 1 and 2 and associated quantity.

As a part of Early Year skill building programme, introduction totheKnobless cylinders  aided in enhancing  fine motor skills, concentration and seriation capabilities.

Motor skills

To enhance their motor skills, students were involved in a wide range of activities such as

  • Arranging Knobless cylinders from big to small
  • Pouring solids from one container to another through a funnel
  • Sorting a mixture of Kidney beans and Garbanzo Beans.

Later, students were engaged in rolling and unrolling of the mat, for this helped them to develop muscle coordination and concentration.

Art

Students were involved in a colouring activity wherein they coloured a cut out of a circle in circular strokes and made further connections with shapes. Later, they used the circles to create a bird and pasted different shapes on it.

Physical education

Students learned basic gymnastics skill called beam walk, which is the key to all functional movement. This helped in building their postural equilibrium, muscular balance, and stability. Balance training at an early age initiates coordination and concentration.

Music

Music was integrated with unit of inquiry wherein they listened to the four different types of sounds (singing, talking, shouting and whispering) and identified the appropriate sound and tone used for singing. They sang ‘I love you, you love me’ and ‘Old Mc Donald’ with actions.

Dance

Dance lessons focused on creating  basic steps where students showcased fine and gross motor skills. Reinforcement of the concept of dancing statue was also done during  classtime.

Library

Students were read a touching tale of a giraffe who wanted nothing more but to dance. The story ‘Giraffe can’t Dance’ was the story of Gerald, the Giraffe, who had crooked knees and thin legs. It was very hard for the giraffe to dance . However, Gerald, the Giraffe was encouraged by an unlikely friend and he finally gained the courage to dance to his own tune.
It was a tale of gentle inspiration for every child with dreams of greatness.

Free Play

Blog 13th to 22nd August 2019

Unit of Inquiry

Fawns commenced their first unit under the Transdisciplinary Theme – Who we are.

Central Idea: We explore who we are through our senses.

Lines of Inquiry:

  • Identification of five senses
  • We use each of our senses to learn and explore
  • Our feelings

Students were taken for a nature walk wherein they observed their immediate environment and inquired using their five senses. Later, they were engaged in an activity in which they sorted picture cut-outs of the things they saw. They identified things such as school clock, birds, aeroplane, squirrel, fishpond, kites flying in the sky, school gate.A mind map was created which included the student anecdotes that drew attention  to the sense of sight.

Circle Time

As a part of Early years skill-building programme and  integration to the Learner Profile attributes, moral values were reinforced by the facilitators using role-plays depicting different social scenarios. These included – saying ‘please’, ‘sorry’ and ‘thank you’, greeting one another politely; the importance of being ‘principled’ and ‘caring’ was also undertaken.

Discussion on Independence Day was undertaken. Students were shown audio visuals related to the facts and information of the festival. They enjoyed singing and enacting a patriotic song, ‘Nanha munna raahi hu’.

A sponge dabbing activity was also done wherein students crafted the National flag in their art file.

With ‘Rakshabandhan’ coinciding with  Independence Day and ‘Janmashtami’, being celebrated over the weekend, students were explained the importance of festivals and rituals and ceremonies associated with them. Later, they loved watching audio-visual stories related to the festivals. Students ardently participated and engaged themselves in craft activities related to the festivals.

Language

Language was integrated with Art, where reinforcement of sound ‘a’ was done. Students coloured within the outline of the sound ‘a’ and pasted pictures associated to the sound such as astronaut, apple, and ant.

Students actively sung the rhyme, ‘5 senses’ thereby integrating the unit of inquiry.

Math

Math was integrated with Art, where reinforcement of the shape ‘triangle’ was undertaken by making a fish using various triangular shape.

Students were involved in an interesting learning engagement of sorting various class material like pompom balls, toy fruits, colour pencils and beads according to the different colour coded trays.

SEL (Social and Emotional Learning)

Students were introduced to emotions like happy, angry, sad and surprised with the help of emoticons, role-play and songs for this helped them to label what they were feeling. Understanding their feelings and accepting their emotions is the first step towards learning to regulate them.

Motor skills

Students eagerly took part in building a tower using the Montessori pink cubes arranging them from biggest to smallest by size. Stacking the cubes, thus helped in developing visual skills of discrimination, coordination and precision.

Physical Education

Students learned different terminology used during physical training like in, out, up, down, turn, hop, bend.

Music

Students identified and named the different musical instruments kept in the music room. They also sang ‘Choti-Choti Jeevan Gaadi’, ‘I Love You’ and ‘Insy-Winsy Spider’.

Dance

Dance lessons focused on basic steps where students showcased fine and gross motor skills.  The concept of dancing statue was also reinforced.

Art

Students learned to colour the cut out of a circle by moving their crayons in a circular motion. This helped to develop their pincer grip and hone their fine motor skills. The circles will be used to create a bird.

Library

The students listened to the story ‘Elephant’s Pyjamas sleepover has never been so silly!’ It was a hilarious animal story written by an award-winning children’s author, Michelle Robinson. 

Elephant was invited to a pyjama party and he could not wait to be a part of it. There was just one problem, he did not have any pyjamas. Poor elephant searched everywhere but it only resulted in embarrassment as nothing could fit his enormous body. As he was about to give up, his friends got together and sewed just the right sized pyjamas, so he could attend the fun filled party.

The story focussed on terms like friendship, care and unconditional love.

Free play

Blog – 5th – 11th August 2019

Circle Time

To create a cohesive learning environment at the beginning of the school year, Essential agreements were made by showing some pictographic references which were followed by some  enactments like-walking in a straight line without pushing, washing hands before and after meals, keeping personal belongings in the cubby holes, keeping the manipulatives back at their proper place and stacking the plates after eating.

Knobbed cylinders were introduced for they aim to enhance student eye hand coordination and gross motor skills. Manipulation of different sizes and dimensions and placing them in the correct order further helped  students to hone visual discrimination, eye hand precision of movement.

Language

Students were introduced to sound ‘a’ through the use of various picture cards, audio-visual clues and objects.

They were also initiated to sand paper tracing of letter ‘a’ to learn and understand its correct formation and directionality.

The students were also shown an audio-visual presentation of a story ‘Daniel Tiger – Grownups come back’, wherein they showed the parent dropping off their child at school, and the child was very reluctant to let go of the parent. Daniel then tells the classmate, “grownups come back” to make her feel better. In the end, it showed the parents returning to pick up their child, which ensured that “grown-ups come back”.

Math

Students were introduced to a new shape ‘and they later pointed out the various objects inside the classroom that were triangular in shape.

Motor skills

To enhance their motor skills, students were engaged in a wide range of activities such as pounding, making tower using blocks, beading, pegging, threading, sorting pompom balls and manipulation of picture puzzles.

Physical Education

Students learned balancing exercises to strengthen the core muscles and to improve their coordination. Balancing exercises helped in improve the ability to react to sudden directional change and prevent accidental falls.

Music

The students sang ‘Hello, how are you?’ and ‘Choti-Choti Jeevan Gaadi’ song in Hindi. They also identified and named some musical instruments in their music class.

Library

The students were read a different, beautiful book ‘Market Day’, by ‘Lois Ehlert’. The story elucidated a fun trip to the vegetable market to  carry fruits and vegetables to sell .

‘Market Day’ was illustrated with bold and rich colours for it aimed to capture the imagination of a child. The book gave a lot of information on  culture, our connection to food, how it’s grown and where we buy it from, also about people, places and art.

Art

Students identified the shape ‘circle’ and coloured a pre-drawn picture of a smiley using their favourite colour.

They also pasted bits of paper on an old newspaper cut out in the shape of a flower, fish and a tree, for this helped to improve dexterity and eye hand coordination. They worked together in pairs, pasting the bits of paper. Working together helped to develop the ability to share and establish a constructive relationship.

Free Play

Students enjoyed playing with colourful balls and rolled them from one corner to another, climbed the mini rock wall, took turns to slide and later explored the  park. They also worked on their social skills during pretend play time that allowed them to engage and explore real life situations.

Fawn A- Blog- 24th July – 2nd August, 2019

We would like to extend a very warm welcome to all our students. On the first day, students arrived with mixed emotions. They were made to settle into the new vibrant environment in class and were engaged in a variety of learning engagements. During Circle time, both the facilitators and students introduced themselves and learned to mark their attendance on the attendance chart. Students were familiarised with the different learning corners in the class like Reading corner, Blocks station, Garden corner, Creative corner and Reflection corner

Students were taken out for a nature walk where they enjoyed observing different insects like earthworms, ants and centipedes. Further, they were taken to the school garden and were shown different types of flowering plants. They were very excited to spot various butterflies, birds and squirrels in the garden. They also visited the Fish pond at school and enjoyed observing variety of colourful fish in there.

Language

Students enjoyed a story session in class wherein their communication skills and vocabulary was enhanced during narration of the stories, ‘Bubbles goes to school’ and ‘Bruno learns to share’.