In the Robin room, we recently set up an invitation of smaller loose parts. The parts consisted of smaller pieces of wood cookies, branches cut in different heights and a box of small pieces.
Today we noticed a child exploring with the pieces. The child was stacking the tree cookies but they kept falling down. I noticed her frustrated and asked her what was happening.
The expression on her face was very serious as she explained to me about her predicament. She explained “The pieces keep falling down!” as another stack fell, “See!” We then examined the pieces together. The child noticed the different heights of the branch pieces, I pointed out that they were a different thickness too.
After further examination she stacked a thinner branch and then a thicker one. She was very excited to make the connection that the thicker branch was more stable to stack tree cookies and other pieces on top. The expression on her face turned to joy as she said “This one stays better!”, as she pointed to the thicker branch.
The invitation provoked her need to explore the schema of Dynamic Vertical. This is also known as stacking. Through this play she was able to figure out how to position the pieces so that they stood on their own.
We are exploring the possibility that she may be interested in learning about height. Through some further observations we will collaborate on more activities. This will expand upon learning opportunities on her interests.
Providing different loose parts and materials can open up more possibilities. We will bring out little cube blocks, wooden Popsicle sticks in different sizes and stacking cups. Displaying pictures of buildings provides a visual to challenge children if they want to use them to recreate or to guide them.
Setting out rulers, measuring tape and other ways to measure height as an invitation, will expand upon their learning as well. Measuring can be a collaborative effort which can create friendships; this will also open up conversations into math concepts through the measuring. We look forward to seeing which path this will take.
Blog written by: Noelle