Category Archives: Ngā Whetu

5 Little Men

Men in flying saucers!

Wow, so much discussion around men in flying saucers…..captures the imagination like nothing else! We have had this book for a couple of months now and it has encouraged so much conversation.

This particular version is a modern ‘take’ on the song Five Little Men In A Flying Saucer, as it is based around environmental issues. It is amazing to see how many of the children in our room can identify the environmental disasters that are illustrated within this song book. So, as you can imagine there has been some thought provoking conversations between children and teachers about oil slicks, native forestry burning down, the mass of rubbish that is accumulating in our seas and on our lands…and it goes on. From this song book we have then moved onto our own flying saucer game we use with a magnet board, encouraging lots of interaction and building on maths skills, turn taking and confidence.

Construction in Ngā Whetū

Last week we introduced Mobilo to our classroom and there was a little bit of interest, but probably not as much as we anticipated. So this morning we placed it on a blanket in the middle of the room and you can see some of the girls getting ‘stuck in’; but the aim was to encourage the majority, not just the minority. We worked with the children one on one for a while, but this isn’t always possible.

So we put on our thinking caps and looked at different ways we could encourage more interaction with this tricky resource. Amz came up with the idea of a ‘show and tell’ at group time, which you can see in the photo below. The children were concentrating so hard and were really attentive whilst the ‘demo’ was happening

…..and then after morning tea it was all on. Oh my goodness….the children just flew, using their imaginations and persistence to build many different models.

This activity is very much a progressive resource from our spaceship construction. It is tricky to fit together; the children need to use their spatial skills, they need to look at size, how to solve problems, concentrate, persevere and use their fine motor skills. I was so impressed that with a little encouragement and lots of enthusiasm they came up with so many different creations. Nils told me he had made a “real boat”, whilst Fleur-Ange made a “car” and Hunter made a “Grape Harvester”.

EXPLORATION – Mana Aotūroa

(Strand 5 of Te Whariki)

The child learns through active exploration of the environment.

Goal: Children experience an environment where they develop working theories for making sense of the natural, social, physical and material worlds.

Learning outcomes: Children make sense of their worlds by developing working theories/te matauranga.

Can’t wait to see what we get ‘up to’ next….where will this lead to?