Saturday, April 2, 2011

Concepts of Print Learned While Playing in the Mud

Can you learn concepts of print by playing in the mud?  Our threes class did!

Preschool to the Rescue is a book for every nursery school to have in its library.  It instills such a sense of power in children as they get to be the heroes in the book.

I love the idea my colleague,Clara Cohen, had for extending the literature experience of her class of three year olds.  The class made their own version of the book using props, photographs and mud!

Her class has been quite intrigued by the mud lately as the snow has melted and we’ve had quite a bit of rain leaving lots of mud to explore on our playground each day.  They have been reading mud books and creating various experiences inside the classroom including painting with mud.

For this particular literature adaptation, after reading the book a few times, the children each chose an object to get “stuck in the mud.”

Then they went out to create the perfect mud puddle for their reenactment.

Each child had a turn adding a creature or vehicle to the mud puddle while being photographed.

They of course, rescued them after each classmate had had a turn.

Clara processed the pictures and the next day, worked with the children to glue them into a book and write the words.  She made sure to help scaffold the children’s language to model the repetitive pattern of the original book.

I just love that she added the sound words that the children created.

This book then became the focus for story time that day.

The children became published authors proud of their work, of their words.

The book resides on the book shelf and is quickly becoming a classroom favorite for independent rereading.

Making class books like this one is a fantastic way to extend literature experiences for young children.  They learn a great deal about concepts of print as they take part in the big book making process.  They are very intrigued to re read books that have their photos or their drawings in them.  Simple books with repetitive language patterns are best for this type of project. 

Other big books made with the fours class this year include adaptations of Ten Black Dots, Snowballs, Mary Wore Her Red Dress, Monster Sandwich and several others. 

What are your favorite stories to extend to class books?

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