Playful Directions

Mrs. Forst's Pre-Kindergarten Blog


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Filming Day

Our class has gone from authors, to actors, and now to movie stars! Today we officially wrapped the filming of our movie and it went off without a hitch. The students delivered their lines, waiting patiently while other’s filmed their scenes, and acted their hearts out. Below, you can see a little sneak peak of our characters in their costumes and how we filmed with a blue screen with the help from Weird Eric (our cinematographer).

As a second treat, I thought you might want to see another glimpse into the students’ writing process. This script was written on January 23rd and largely has the same story line as before. Some of the students have added speaking parts for their characters and they have introduced a problem to the story (the snake). However, no one actually signed on to play the snake, so I guess we had an invisible snake problem. We also had some very imaginative character names that I clearly don’t know how to spell, so bear with me!

Enjoy!

 

S.A. – Mom princess heart

E.C. – Mom princess Bear

C.P. – Princess Butterfly

G.K. – a pot chef

Z.G. – Rainbow the Fairy

G.S. – Gavin the skeleton (with fire hat)

C.S. – Princess Snowflake

N.T. – Izza the fairy

I.M. – Santa

V.J. – a turtle

W.W. – A Prince Zowkoo

F.R. – a princess kitty cat

T.S. – Prince Blaze

 

Once upon a time there was a little home out in the west where Santa lived and it was snowing. In the snow there was a castle where some princesses live. Santa shows up at the castle and he goes down their chimney and he puts some presents under the tree. Then he goes back up the chimney and leaves. Outside the castle there was a moat and in that moat lived a turtle. He looks up at the chimney and he sees Santa coming out. And he says, “Just gimme a present.” And Santa said, “Please ask nicely.” And the turtle says, “Please can I have a present?” And Santa says, “Yes you can,” and then Santa gives him a baby for a present and he then flies away.

Then Prince Zowkoo wakes up early in the morning and comes downstairs to see if Santa came. “Santa came! Santa Came!” Izza the fairy comes out of her room and says, “What’s going on?” and she checks to see if the sun is up and if it’s time for breakfast. The Pot Chef says that “the food is ready!” Princess snowflake looks outside and there was a big snow storm happening outside. There was lighting. The storm happened all day and snows a lot.

Then all the princesses wake up and come downstairs for breakfast. They look under the tree and see some presents. They open their presents. Then they go outside and play for a little bit but then they come inside to take a bath.  Prince Blaze opens the door for the princesses.  But he forgot to close and the door and Mom Princess Heart notices a snake has come inside. “A snake has come inside!” The snake bites her and she gets hurt. Gavin the skeleton comes with his fire hose and he blows the snake away with the water.

Princess Kitty Cat and Rainbow the fairy take their mom to the emergency room so she can get a shot and a glued band aid that she has to keep on for a while and that makes her all better. They also check her eyes to make sure she can see alright.

Gavin the skeleton becomes the protector of the castle so that no more snakes or monsters can come inside.

And they lived happily ever after!

The End!


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Author Visit with Jason Chin

Today, our students traveled to the City Campus to meet Jason Chin, an author/illustrator of non-fiction pictures books. He read his book Gravity and talked about how he came up with the idea for the story and how it evolved over time. We also got a chance to see him do a quick drawing of some of the items from the book. After we spent some time with our visiting author, the Pre-K students got to meet up with their city counterparts for some exploring of their playground and playing with old and new friends.

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Reading Outside

Such a lovely day, why don’t we meet with our Book Buddies outside?

 


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Fine Motor Exercises

Between the ages of 3-6, children spend large amounts of time honing their fine motor skills.  As adults, we take controlling the tiny ballet of movement within our hands and wrists for granted.  Children, developing from the trunk outward, have a much better grasp of motions involving their entire arm.  This is why many young creators use both a fist grip and large sweeping motions either from their elbow or shoulder.  Practice controlling these muscles is the only way provide growth.  The funny thing is that children are built to learn this skill.  They naturally seek out activities that hone their use of all the fine motor muscles.  Below are some of the ways children choose to practice in our class.

 

Arranging and creating designs using found objects.

Manipulating small toys.

 

Sorting.

Pouring.

Hanging.

The most recognizable one: choosing to color or draw as a fun past-time.

All of these activities are self chosen.  Of course we incorporate many other opportunities for fine motor use throughout the day, but I find the ones they choose most interesting.

 

 

 


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Shadows

Outside, a few children noticed that their shadows were very tall.  I asked them why their shadows kept following them around.  That question led to lots of silly experiments and many more questions.  Someone mentioned that their shadow was longer on the blacktop than on the sidewalk and led us to wondering why.  We attempted to trace our shadows with the supplies at hand, some sandstone we found laying around, but found it was too difficult to make a mark.  We’ll certainly need to gather some chalk before we go out to investigate again.

With the interest in shadows, we pulled out our old fashioned, non-digital projector and set it up in the construction area.  Mrs. Pless added a few materials and we let them explore on their own.

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Most of their focus has been on what happens when materials are placed on the lighted top of the projector. Placing a transparent color shape, they will quickly turn around to see how it changes the projection on the blinds.  Only a few children have noticed the changes they can make by building with the see-through blocks in FRONT of the blinds.

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So far, none have noticed their own shadows now visible on the blinds.  It will be interesting to see how it changes their play once they’ve discovered their own shadows.


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We are Family!

Our families are made of so many different people. Yesterday’s Morning Message asked, “Do you have a sister?”  Children who do have a sister put their names inside a circle that was labeled “yes.” Those without put their names outside of the circle.  Today repeated the question about brothers.  Taking it a step further, we put two circles on the floor and handed each child a doll to represent themselves.  If you have a sister or brother, you put your doll in the corresponding circle.  If you do not have either, you put your doll on the outside of the circles.

All was well, until someone discovered that they needed more dolls.  One of the children realized that they had a brother and a sister and didn’t know what to do with their doll.  Mrs. Pless asked for solution suggestions from the group.  We had a few ideas percolating.

Idea #1:

Put dolls who have brothers and sisters in between the two circles.  We tried it, but the children realized that then it looked as though those dolls had “No” siblings.

Idea#2

Place the two circles on top of one another and then place all of the sibling dolls in the new, single circle.  Children who have only one sibling quickly realized that this wasn’t going to work.

Idea #3

Pick up the top (now stacked) circle and slide it over so that the two overlap only a small bit in the middle.  The overlap is where you put dolls who have both brothers and sisters.

We have certainly had classes figure out the final solution in the past, but we’ve never had so many thoughtful experimental ideas.  It was quite exciting to watch their mathematical thinking stretch.

 

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Oh, the Squishiness of STEM