Chapter 3 Two-year-olds are still learning through their senses and require a variety of materials to enhance their developmental needs. This form can be utilized to evaluate the types of developmental opportunities that are available from the toy selection in a particular classroom.
Evaluating Toys and Materials in a Classroom for Two-Year-Olds
Name of Toy, Number Available, and Comments
Promotes large-muscle coordination
Promotes small-muscle coordination
Fosters auditory discrimination
Encourages response to sounds
Emphasizes tactile or multisensory stimulation
Promotes eye/hand coordination
Encourages two-handed coordination
Emphasizes tactile stimulation
Emphasizes color discrimination
NURSERY RHYME BOOK You will need to start a collection of 10 nursery rhymes to do with the children. They need to be in a format that allows for easy access and which can be utilized by children. One suggestion I have is to go on the Internet and search for nursery rhymes. To find pictures of the nursery rhymes you can do an image search and type in the name of the nursery rhyme you want. You will then have to copy and paste to a document and then print it off. A requirement is that the pictures are in color-not black and white!!!!
Mount the picture on a study piece of poster board [can use manila folders cut in half], laminate the picture [you can put words on one side, picture on the other], and then punch a hole through a spot and lace a piece of ribbon, yarn, or metal ring through it for a handy song file. Make sure the print size you use is large enough to be read when you are holding the picture at a distance of 18 inches.
Just look around you, in every corner and closet. Props are waiting to be found.
Chapter 8 Sensory Awareness
Chapter 8 underscores the point that young children are much more in touch with their senses then adults are. In some ways in order to live in our current society, adults must turn off their senses to a great degree in order to accomplish the daily tasks of living and meet the responsibilities of work and studies. If we continued to be ruled solely by our senses we might always be late and not capable of completing anything because we would have stopped to smell the roses-constantly!
However, if you are to appreciate the child’s view of the world, it is necessary that you become more aware of your own senses. If you truly concentrate on taking in information through your senses do you perceive information differently? In a way this activity requires you to turn off your analytical mind and turn on your aesthetic perception.
For this activity, you will do the following:
Read some information regarding sensory awareness in children. Some of the following links might be helpful:
Infants and Toddlers: How Children Develop Sensory Awareness
Directions: Spend 15 minutes outside or inside your home or school. Use your senses to answer these questions:
List everything you see.
Breathe in and describe what you smell.
Close your eyes and list the sounds that you hear. Where did they come from?
Touch something (not another person) close by and describe how it feels. How did it feel to slow down and just utilize your senses?
Spend at least 30 minutes in an infant or toddler room experiencing what the child experiences in the classroom. This will entail you to be on the floor, so dress for comfort. Try to follow the child’s lead. Note how the child uses his or her senses to make meaning of the world.
Share your feelings about your experience with your classmates.
Chapter 9 Natural Scientists Visit a preschool, kindergarten, and primary class during free time. Observe the children and identify any of the inquiry skills below that you witnessed. Decide if what you observed is child-directed, teacher-guided (supported), or teacher-directed. Briefly describe what you observed under each skill and note the overall amount of time children spent utilizing process skills. Can you conclude whether children are natural scientists or if they have opportunities to be natural scientists?
Setting (child-directed, etc.)
Chapter 10 Math Knowledge and Competencies Rating Scale
Rate (on a scale of 1 to 10) your knowledge and competency for each of the identified mathematical content components and process skills listed below.
For the knowledge scale: What is your confidence level regarding your ability to be able to explain to someone else what each of these terms mean? As you observe children, would you be able to identify if their play demonstrated involvement in any of these content components?
For the competency scale: What is your skill level for each of these mathematical content components? Do you feel that you would know what kinds of materials you could use with children to enhance their skill level in each of these categories? How confident to you feel about your ability to take advantage of teachable moments or to design lessons that would enhance children’s knowledge and skills for these mathematical content components and process skills?
Rating Scale: Poor (1) to Excellent (10) Knowledge Competency
Number sense and counting
Classifying and sorting
Patterns, functions, algebra
Geometry (shapes) and spatial sense
Data analysis and probability
Describe memories of your early math experiences and how they might have affected your current knowledge level and competencies in the different categories.
Plan of Action
If you are an individual who has math phobias, had unfortunate experiences with math, or found your ratings to be on the low side, discuss how you plan to resolve those issues.
What do you think are the positive and negative aspects of learning about mathematical content and process skills?
Can you envision preparing yourself as a teacher who has developed math competencies and knowledge? Identify potential barriers that you might have to overcome.
Outline an initial plan to institute a developmentally appropriate math curriculum that would encompass teaching mathematical content components and the utilization of process skills. To start, identify at least 2 Goals for yourself and 2 Goals for your potential classroom.
Books on Mathematical Concepts Books on Numbers, Counting, Equations, & Fractions from http://www.canteach.ca/elementary/theme2.html
Other Books on Counting:
1 2 3 Pop! by Rachel Isadora
Arlene Alda's 1,2, 3by Arlene Alda
City By Numbers by Stephen Johnson
Cookie Count, A tasty pop-up book by Robert Sabuda
Countby Denise Fleming
Counting Wildflowers by Bruce McMillan
Each Orange Had 8 Slices - A Counting Book by Paul Giganti, Jr. illustrated by Donald Crews
Farm Counting Bookby Jane Miller
Have You Seen My Duckling? By Nancy Tafuri
How Many Feet In The Bed?by Diane Hamm
I Can Count 100 Bunnies, and so can you!by Cyndy Szekeres
See Carol Hurst's Children's Literature Site at http://www.carolhurst.com. Click on “Curriculum;” Scroll down to Math and click on Data Gathering and Picture Books.
The Young Child and Mathematics, 2d ed. by Juanita V. Copley and published by NAEYC (2010) has a disc that contains lists of children’s books, both fiction and non-fiction, that could be used to explore mathematics with young children.