Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Sensory Box Update

I redid my sensory box for our new unit: Things That Grow. I put a lot of animal food in it (seeds, corn, hay) and put sight word butterflies and matching sight word "caterpillars" (made from clothespins) in it as well. I tried to use a play, debrief, play model when I introduced this center. I first just let them have at it by exploring the different elements and observing the different foods and textures. Then in centers meeting and during later center times, I asked some questions to get students thinking more critically about what they were playing with. They explored how animal food was different from and similar to people food, and observed that corn and seeds had similar characteristics. The conversation among students in this center was much richer following the debrief, and I found that they were much more engaged with the actual materials even though they weren't necessarily doing the sight word matching.

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