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In a Pinch.

Presentation:  Animal Sorting

This is a quick variation on the previous "Pom Pom" tool.
I came upon this small bamboo tray in Japan Town @ Daiso, $1.50.
The set came with a 3 compartment tray with handle & a small basic bamboo tong.  The package said that this was a "Pill Box?"  Go figure.

I'm always coming up with new work tool variations based on things I come across, so this seemed like a natural off-shoot of our classwork.  Similar skill being built, but just adding Jewel-Toned Animals to catch Zo's eyes!   
The pieces came from an existing Mancala set we owned.

The Goal
Counting, color & shape sorting, pincher skill.

The Set Up
1)  A tray with compartments (egg crate, ice tray..)
2)  Handful of colored animals (or any other small colored items)
3)  A small glass bowl
4)  Tweezers or tongs

The Presentation
1)  Demo the basic clamping motion of using a tweezer
2)  Pinch an animal, drop deliberately into a compartment.
3)  Pick up next animal, hover over each compartment until the animal in tong matches, then drop.
4)  Repeat until all animals are placed, go from left to right.
5)  Reverse presentation, place all animals back into bowl.
6)  Invite child to try. 

The Work Session
The tray was initially empty (first photo).  I placed a single colored animal into each compartment to give Zo a "hint" as to the goal of this tool.  Since it is a similar skill as the Pom-Pom, I actually did NOT present this tool to him.  I simply told him that I have "something new" for him and led him to find this tray on the work shelf.  Then, "animals into the box," I said.  The hint was enough to get him going on the sorting sequence.

Consequently, because he saw this tool for the first time with an animal in each compartment, this is how he wanted to "return" the tool to the tray.  You will see this on the clip.  Also the placement of the movable handle on the small tray was noted by Zo, as well as the initial location of the tong (I put it into the glass bowl before the session started).
This taught me again, that FIRST IMPRESSIONS are crucial in teaching a new tool per the Montessori Method.  What he sees FIRST, is what he thinks is right.  Keeps me on my toes regarding my behavior OUTSIDE of class time too.

Kids are sponges.

Anyways, see Zozie give this one a shot ....

1 comment:

  1. Yes, I quite agree on the first impression thing! I feel like if I'm not on my toe and don't watch what I'm doing, then whatever idea I want to instill gets lost because they get so excited and want to do it their way and won't go back.