Developing early literacy skills is a very important part of our day in the preschool and toddler rooms at Compass ELC Shamrock. From weekly visits to our local library to daily interactions reading together in large or small groups, books have led to wonderful learning opportunities.
The children in our preschool classroom show an interest in books that stir intrigue and emotion, and have an element of mystery. These books promote projects and experiments, and inspire many questions for the children to think about together.
Most recently we have been exploring emotions in Puff the Magic Dragon; investigating shadows, fears, and friendships in The Black Rabbit; finding our own rainbows inspired by A Rainbow of My Own and discovering what The Terrible Plop is.
We recently came across the book The Terrible Plop, and the children and I were very intrigued. It involves an apple falling from a tree into the water, creating “The Terrible Plop” sound that was causing the rabbits and many other animals to run away. After reading this book on the second day at the children’s request, Daisy asked, “What’s a plop?” I posed this question back to the children. Some children thought it was the apple that created the “plop” while others thought it was the water. I mentioned that we had apples and water outside and that we could investigate to find out what a “plop” was ourselves. The children were eager to do so!
We headed outside to the apple tree in our backyard and gathered apples that had fallen to the ground and filled a shallow container with water. We then took turns dropping apples into the water, and tried to figure out what a plop might sound like.
The sounds made during our initial investigation didn’t satisfy the children, so I asked them what we needed to do. Some children thought we needed bigger apples. So that same afternoon we used bigger apples and a larger bowl of water and tried again. As we dropped the bigger apples, there were a lot of splashes but no “plop”. We knew that the terrible plop was a sound made by an apple dropping into water. But, how could we recreate that sound? Daisy suggested, “We need more water.”
Again we gathered larger apples and this time we filled a larger bin with water. Taking turns, we dropped our apples. “Hurray!” the children shouted. We definitely heard loud “plops” this time. However, the noise was not terrible and scary like in the book; to the children it was a joyful sound.
The children continued to take turns dropping apples into the water while the others recreated the story by taking the perspective of the scared animals in the book, running away each time they heard “the terrible plop”.
We are learning that:
• A question can lead to an investigation.
• We can experiment to understand what we are curious about.
• We can use stories to stimulate imagination and play.
• We can recreate stories and use drama to understand another perspective.
• We can share our thinking and work together.
• We can use our problem solving skills to solve a challenge and reach our goals.
“A child who reads will be an adult who thinks.” ~ Author unknown
Kim Hosking RECE, Compass ELC Shamrock Preschool Program
If you enjoyed this Blog, check out Reading Our Emotions, also from our Shamrock Program.
To read previously posted Compass ELC Blogs, please click HERE