Monday, September 28, 2015

How The Rainbow Was Made - An American/Japanese Folktale

Technically, if read as written for the curriculum, this story has nothing to do with Japan. However, when the main character has the same name (but different gender) as a student in your class, you change the story accordingly. (no disrespect to the authors at Mother Goose Time!) We only changed the pronouns and location. :)

The star of our story, Nana, was a little bit proud and a little bit shy to have a story all about her! Her classmates thought it was great, and giggled every time I read what "Nana" did next. She was a great little helper, holding up the story pieces when I read the story through the 2nd time. 

Those "funny little birds" made an appearance in the block center during free play, diving into the "block flowers" and colored "paint pots". The rainbow theme carried over into the math center, where some very excited kiddos played the rainbow counting/sorting board game. (I added the pinchers for some extra fine motor practice) I was really happy to see that they were able to play this game without much teacher supervision, and without any conflicts. Yay for self-direction! 

He was so excited about choosing a green pom pom, he promptly fell out of his chair 
after taking his turn. No injuries resulted, and the game went on! 
I asked the children at one table to use the colored sticks (I didn't specify which ones - I added colored Popsicle sticks and "planks" to the same container as the skinny sticks provided by MGT) to make a rainbow pattern. Some children made patterns with colored beads on the skinny "candy" sticks (I forgot to take a picture), while others used the planks to make a rainbow house. 

Since I am super passionate about early literacy, one of my favorite parts of the MGT curriculum is the writing journal that goes with the theme of the month. I will write another post with a more in-depth look at journal writing in preschool, but for now I will share today's page from our star, Nana. We talked about the rainbow, the color blue, and how the color blue makes us feel. She was so proud of her writing. :) 

The literacy activity for today involved both the art project and the writing journal. We talked about sharing, like "Nana" shared the colors in the story with the funny little birds, and we did a "timed-share" activity in which I pulled out only one of each color crayon and used the stopwatch on my phone to count up to 20 seconds, at which time they had to stop and share the color with a friend at the table. This was repeated until everyone had colored with all the colors of the rainbow (plus PINK!) It was such a fun activity that my two youngest ones asked to come back and color a 2nd sharing bird.

Nana - the star of the story, with her 2 sharing birds 
It was a fun, unexpected, way to celebrate one of our friends in class and learn about the rainbow, sharing, and feelings...all in the same day! 

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