Over the past few weeks the Kiddoes have been very busy with their individual research projects. They are coming along fantastically and we are all learning some interesting facts. Today, we had a special guest, (Susan) who came in to help us mold clay representations of our insects. Clay was a new medium for the Kiddoes to work with, and it was interesting to hear their comments. "It is smoother than playdough," "It comes from the ground? Can we find it on the playground?"
We started with a brief class discussion on what the process was we were going to follow.
From there, it was time to get dirty! We went group by group to create our clay representations.
Each Kiddoe was given a block of clay and Susan explained to the groups how to use the palm of their hand to roll the clay, use their thumbs to smooth the cracks and how to use the crook of their thumb/pointer to pull out the three body parts each insect has.
The Kiddoes really had to experiment with pressure. Too much and their insects would quickly become deformed. Not enough and the lump of clay didn't change shape. This was an activity which really challenged their fine motor skills.
After the three body parts were formed (head, thorax, abdomen) we used a straw to make 6 holes for legs. It was an interesting conversation when the Kiddoes were asked where the holes should go. They had to think for a moment when I said, would I put legs on your head?" We looked at some books and learned that all insects' legs are situated on the thorax. Next we made 2 holes for the antennae.
Once our insects were finished, we took them down the hall to where the kiln was located. The Kiddoes were excited to learn how the kiln worked. We were in shock when we learned that the clay needs a week to dry before we are able to bake it. Our representations are going to be a work in process over the last few weeks of Kindergarten.
We learned many new things today while creating our representations. It was agreed all around that this project is becoming more and more fun every day!!