Sunday, February 12, 2012

Caution: Floor mats in use here!!!

Here is what went on this week in our classroom. A bit of this and a bit of that....

Remember my recent post in our literacy activities? Well, here are a  few pictures of the children in action with the sound booklets, the sandpaper letters and objects and the sandpaper letters witht pictures:

I found these exercises so beneficial to the children. We always revise our sounds at circle time and introduce new ones too. Of course, this go hand in hand with the sandpaper letters during individual lessons. However, I have found that, taken out of these 2 contexts, if some children are asked to recognise a sound, they are lost. Practising their sounds this way was so enticing and they really liked it. It helped a few of them to make the association between a word, its initial sound and the written sound. I am really glad I spent so much time making the booklets and looking for objects around my house for our box (believe me, it was probably the hardest part.. though my own kids thought it was fun... LIke a scavenger hunt inside the house!)

What else did we do?

Punching and gluing

Tracing, colouring and cutting exercise


More jigsaws

The above photo shows how the children are using our floor mats in the classroom. To be honest, over the past 2 weeks, I have been reminding the children of the importance of working with their mats (either on the floor or at the table). This was a principle of the Montessori method we had gone over at the beginning of the year but some children had either completely forgotten the rules and forgot to use the mats altogether or they were not using them appropriately (e.g:  carrying their work and mat separately). So, I reintroduced the lesson on the use of mats in our classroom. The mats provide children with a delineated work space of their own where they can work. I explained again to the children that a mat represents their own space of work. Nobody can interfere with their work on the mat, touch it or alter it. Children have to learn and show respect for their peers’ work. Basically, the purpose of the mats is to reinforce Montessori's principle of "freedom within limits". I showed them how to walk around the mats and how to place their work on the mats. They were reminded that (as I said above), they are not allowed to join a classmates’ work unless they have be given permission by that child. The children have been more careful thanks to these reminders and you know what… their work and concentration have already improved so much.. Why didn’t I do this before?