Many times in early childhood environments we just threw children a room with materials and expect that they know how to use them. Sometimes we get lucky and they do. But they get optimum value when we introduce them correctly and teach the children how to use materials.
I’m still spending time each day introducing children to materials and how it is best to use them. Today we did self portraits.
Today I also introduced the indoor sand buckets. The children have been using them but I’ve not really taught them the appropriate way to care for them. Sand in the house can be crazy but taking the time to explain what our boundaries are helps.
The rest of the week I will be introducing scissors, the light table, and manipulatives. These materials are available at all times so it’s important to know that we don’t walk around scissors, I teach children how we place our thumb on the top and our other fingers below and point scissors away from us. Those are things that you just don’t automatically know 😳
Being intentional makes a huge difference when you are a play-based facility. We play but we are also learning all the time.