It is always enjoyable to watch how the children react to new materials /playthings being brought into the classroom. Having learned about Abraham Lincoln and George Washington and completed miniature log cabins, the children welcomed the newly introduced Lincoln Logs building toy. Since the logs have grooves that require them to be lined up perfectly in order to fit and stay together, this toy requires patience and perseverance and a different creative process to build a structure.
We like to bring literacy into our classroom utilizing a variety of means. We have added word cards to our arsenal. There are pictures of common things from nature (rabbit, puddle, butterfly) with the printed upper-case word beside it. These were placed on a table with a basket of colored pencils. The children are naturally curious and came to try their hand at writing the words. We have also put out word cards connected to the holiday of Purim – the four mitzvot: tzedakah, shalach manot, reading the Megillah, and preparing the seudah; as well as grogger, mask, king, queen, hamentash, etc.
Many things took place this week connected with Purim. We read and looked at several books connected to the holiday. We read, It’s Purim Time, by Latifa Berry Kropf. The children really liked this book because it contains photos of a PreK class doing the same things we do to prepare for and celebrate Purim. We also looked at the book. Esther’s Story, by Diane Wolkstein. The illustrations in the book depicted the clothing worn in ancient Persia in a more realistic way. The attire of Queens and Kings is not like the Disney versions seen by many of the children. The children had great fun dressing up in costumes and reenacting the story in the Megillah. We even read the story and started feeding the children the lines their chosen character would have said.
The children chose masks that they liked and traced them. They were cut out and the children decorated them with lots of sparkly decorations (some even added a 3D effect). These were hung up to decorate our room. In addition, photos of the children were taken and printed and they had a wonderful time decorating their own photos – adding make-up, glasses, hats, etc. These too, were hung up around the room as decoration.
Purim activity sheets were put out for anyone interested in the math and spatial challenges. They had to count the hamentashen in a basket and match it to its correct numeral, work their way through a maze to get the children to the Megillah reading, and figure out a match between items needing preparation to items already done – bowl, flour, eggs matched to hamentashen
Morah Fran and Morah Yafit