Who knew? Fill a tub with an assortment of pom poms and watch the opportunities for play (read learning) develop.
The Yellow and Orange classes have their tub table filled with various sizes and colors of pom poms. Also included are cups, bowls and the special “window” tongs. (These are actually bug catcher/viewers but we use them for lots of things.)
Of course during play it’s a great time to label the colors and sizes. I enjoyed listening to Ms. Katka’s interactions with the kids about their play.
Soon, this sweet girl showed me her tongs with A LOT of pom poms in it. “Look what I have!”
“Wow,” I said, “You have a lot of pom poms in there. I wonder how many are in there. Can you guess?” (That’s estimating!) She guessed there to be four. We counted them (one to one counting) and she actually had 10 in there. You should have seen the surprise on her face. (This shows she already has an understanding of quantity and numerals.) She filled the tongs again and I asked her to guess again. This time she guessed that there were 8 and after counting we found there were 9 inside. This 3 year old girl was already adjusting her estimating skills due to experience and knowledge. Amazing!
The fun thing about 3 year olds – what you do with one others will also want you to do with them. So we counted a lot! It was interesting to watch their concentration as we carefully counted each one.
Soon, the play extended to wondering how many pom poms you can hold in your hands. We discovered some could hold quite a few. I think the most anyone held was 17!
Another day, in another class, the children explored the pom poms with a different focus. Today we talked about the colors. Did you know that there are light and dark options of the same color? We found lots of those today.
We also took some time to describe the pom poms. We found big ones, little ones and even medium sized. We also noticed that some were sparkly. That’s a fun word.
“Hmmm, you have a couple of really big ones in your mix. Do you think that makes a difference to how many you can hold?”
I just love this “playing!”