Monday, November 2, 2009

Are YOU ready for the SPOOKY Halloween MAZE!?

It was Halloween time at St. Mary's last week, and it appeared that everyone had a great time. This week I was working with the pre-k kids, in the classroom, and in the gymnasium. My day started off, introducing myself to the kids, and playing with them for awhile. Many of the kids were coloring and playing Lego's, while other were on the floor running around and using their imaginations to make up games. After snack time, and reading, we took the kids into the gym for our activity. Since the kids were extremely talkative, we had to calm them down, to gain their attention for instructions to our activity. To start off, I tried to make our game seem as cool and interesting as possible. I asked them Who likes mazes, real loud, and they all responded with a 'YEA' scream. I then asked them, who likes SPOOKY Halloween mazes, trying to make it sound more interesting, and that led the kids to screaming and even louder 'ME' or 'YEA'. It seemed that by projecting my voice, and asking question to start, the kids were more focused, and wanted to start the activity. I noticed that hyping the kids up, made them want to play, even if they were so interested in the beginning.

To explain our activity, we had the kids line up single file right before the start of the maze, and explained to them how to leap, horizontal jump, and slide. By explaining the skills right before the start, it helped the kids stay focused on what they had to do at each part of the maze. I feel that if we were to explain the rules and skills first, then try and get the kids excited for our game, it would cause them to forget everything we just explained to them. Once we finally got started, the kids were having a fun time, and everybody was staying on task, which was a surprise. The kids had the hardest time with the slide, especially the really younger kids. Most of them were clicking their feet together, or just trying to slide to quickly and it turned into a gallop. However, when i got the chance to work one on one with the kids and lead by example, they tended to show much better results than if they did it themselves. Along with sliding, many kid had trouble with leaping far distances. Most children didn't use their arms to gain momentum, and tended to use their other foot for more support to leap, which really looked like a jump. The horizontal jump was definitely the best done, because the kids know how to do this, and have done it several times in their life. The thing they didn't do while jumping, was swing their arms; many kids had trouble jumping forward and trying to balance themselves when they land.

To end our lab, we gathered all the kids, and used a huge parachute to play some games with. At first we had all the kids grab a handle, and had the SUNY Cortland students get in between them. Our first game was popcorn, which involved moving the parachute up and down to get the balls in the middle popping up and down. Our next game was the 'turtle', which the kids enjoyed a lot. Basically we threw the parachute up in the air, and everyone laid down on the ground and stuck their head underneath, while their body was still outside. While looking around underneath, all the kids had huge smiles on their faces, and were having a great time. Lastly we did the 'mushroom', which we threw the parachute in the air while holding it, got underneath it, than sat on it as it came back down. Ending the day like this really, made the kids extremely happy, and everyone wanted to keep playing. Overall, I learned a lot this week, whether it was learning how to gain the pre-k kids attention, or a strategy on how to keep them focused for a longer time, either way, I walked out of their knowing one more thing I didn't know when I walked in.

1 comment:

  1. It is good that your beginning to notice how important your voice is. It is your only tool and you should know how to project your voice so your not yelling, but able to have everyone hear you. Also remember that many of the younger children learn by seeing and we as models have to demonstrate everything we want them to do. Having things that the children know like the parachute and creating new games can be a help in your classes. Remember this experience is going to be with you for the rest of your life, take notes and keep them for the days you might want to use then again.