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Building and the Four Foundations at Talbot Trail Sundowners

 How Learning Happens at Talbot Trail!

A group of children were building with Duplo blocks when they decided through conversation that they would like to see how tall they could make a structure.  There was a lot of discussion among the children on where blocks needed to be placed in order to give the structure more support.  The children determined that more blocks were required at the base in order to make it strong.  Once the children began the building, they were curious about how tall their structure was, and requested measuring tapes to determine the height.  One of the children informed the staff that their structure was taller than the measuring tape and asked for her assistance on how to find out how tall the structure was.

The Registered Early Childhood Education Teacher showed the children one way of using the measuring tape to do this.  One of the children measured one of the Duplo blocks and said it was 2 cm, so after the tape ran out, he counted the remainder of the blocks by 2 and added that number to his total on the measuring tape.  This activity evolved in to building structures “out”  instead of “up” by creating tracks, marble runs and mazes.

The children then created a maze for our pet hamster ‘Hammy”.  One of the children suggested we put a morsel of food at the other end to make Hammy go faster through the maze Through these activities, we noticed the four foundations noted in “How Does Learning Happen?” Ontario’s Pedagogy for the Early Years  in action:

Belonging: creating an opportunity for children to explore, to wonder about, care for and make connections to the natural environment.

Well-being: The children were able to take initiative, tackle some challenges with enthusiasm and persistence and cope with changes and frustrations.

Engagement: Exploration of materials, manipulate, investigate, observe and test theories while the teacher participated with the children as a co-investigator.

Expression: Participate in meaningful interactions and communication with peers and adults. The children could listen to and express themselves to one another.

By providing time, space and lots of materials, the children were engaged in  a lot of critical thinking and were encouraged to express themselves. They had a wonderful time doing this activity and we had one very tired hamster and the end of it!