Saturday, September 21, 2019

Favorite Things: Carpet Spots

I have a brand-new favorite thing - these carpet spots. I bought these from Amazon. (Note: I get nothing from promoting these. I just loved them and am sharing them with you.)

I bought them with only a vague idea of how I would use them. Well...they were on sale...and I had a gift card...and the rest is preschool teacher history. I just got them.

These have a rough texture on the bottom - like rough part of Velcro. They stick to the carpet. (Boy do they stick to the carpet!)

I scattered them on the floor in my music room. The 4s had music this week and, as they came in, I told them to stand on a circle. We used the spots throughout music time. They stood on them and sat on them. I called different colors to move or answer a question. When it was time to go, I called colors to line up.

I had to pick up the spots because someone was using the room later in the day. They adhered to the carpet so well, it took me about 10 minutes to pull all of them off the floor. (Well, maybe not that long but close!) Next day, they went right back down and are still there...waiting for the 3s on Monday.

I've been thinking about different configurations or games we could play with these spots. I'm excited about my splurge purchase - in fact they have already become some of my favorite classroom things.

But you don't need to purchase spots. Use paper squares or circles (taped to the floor or with Velcro attached to the back). Or an old Twister mat. Or just tape pieces. Explore how you could use "spots" on the floor for movement, music, and learning games.

Friday, August 30, 2019

Cardboard and Blocks Equal Building Possibilities

Most of my groups of kids love to use blocks. Often we will put out blocks with little or nothing else. The kids enjoy creating in different ways with the blocks.

However, I try to add different materials - just to stimulate more thinking and encourage kids to expand their ideas. Of course, recycled materials make great construction materials. This time, we added cardboard pieces (from boxes) and cardboard tubes.

As is my practice, I put out the items with little direction beyond: "You can use these with the blocks if you choose."

We tried various arrangements of cardboard, blocks, and tubes.

We created structures and playgrounds.

And we even incorporated other items into our structures.

These materials are great for the classroom. You can use whatever you have on hand. If you have large pieces of cardboard or long tubes, cut them smaller or shorter. If they get torn or damaged, just toss them. (Or better yet, find a way to use them in sculptures or murals in the art center!)