This week and last, we have been doing all sorts of activities related to music during our music camp. We have loved having alumni join us for this summer camp! It’s so sweet to see them reconnect with past classmates and help younger children learn about Tulip Tree. We have made (and continue to make) our own instruments using tins, film canisters, beads, rubber bands, bottle caps and hot glue. We are lucky to have a special guest teacher, Heidi, teach us many new songs and share tons of different instruments. We have made a water xylophone, made tiny props out of clay and drawings to go with songs we have learned. Here are some photos of what we have been up to!
You might have noticed a few new visual aide’s or posters around Elm House. We have posted these ‘cue cards’ in strategic places around the school to help the children internalize our routines and to help outline the steps for many recurring parts of our day, such as, getting dressed, using the toilet or getting a diaper change, as well as ‘taking a break’. These visuals help reach students in a variety of ways (or languages of learning and experiencing) The 100 Languages, is a key component to Reggio Emilia philosophy. Like you may guess, the principle refers to communication. However, the emphasis is in offering children one hundred ways to share their thinking. Children learn in different ways and the one hundred languages offer different means for learning and expression.
So for example, when a spoken direction is less than effective, we can try to communicate in other ways with visuals. These visuals reinforce our routines at school, and we hope that they serve as almost an instruction manual for independence building. Visual aids allow children the time they need to process what they are being asked to do. They do not disappear into thin air to be forgotten as spoken words or hand gestures do. Visuals can also be sequenced to breakdown and learn a skill, step by step. Visuals remain the same and allow for identical rehearsal and consistent memory pathways to be created (learning!) With this rehearsal and memory of sequenced activities comes understanding and ultimately increased confidence, independence and self esteem. We have noticed the children using the visuals to not only help themselves, but to help others!
Posted in Elm House Blog
Tagged 100 languages, elm house, Montessori, portland reggio inspired, portland reggio inspired toddlers, portland toddler school, portland toddlers, Reggio, south east portland, Southeast Portland Childcare, toddlers, visuals
Each year around this time we reflect on our year. What explorations did this year begin with? Where did the children’s ideas take us? What did we wonder about? How did we use the 100 languages to explore our wonderings? What did we discover? How did our discoveries lead to knew questions? So much happens throughout the year, sometimes it is hard to remember all that we have done by the time it comes to an end. Here are some of the photos I found while looking back-
At circle this morning, Katee and I read a book called “What Can You Do With a Paleta?” by Carmen Tafolla. I read the English words and Katee read the same words in Spanish. The book is written from the perspective of a small child. She tells us all about the sounds, smells and colors of her neighborhood. The most exciting thing of all is the sound of the tinkly bell coming from the Paleta wagon. She explains the different colors and flavors of paletas and the asks, “WHAT can you DO with a paleta?” It turns out there are many things you can do with a paleta including giving yourself a blue mustache. This book inspired the children to make their own pretend paleta wagon complete with a bell and paper paletas. ..