Crozet Play School

Kids at Play in Crozet

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Light and Letters


Our beautiful classroom got a much needed face lift and I took some time to rearrange a ton of furniture in the room.  Many of the children have been building lots of building, ramps, moving the tubes around, and I felt they just plain needed more building space.  I moved around my train table area and brought out both of the wooden platforms that I have for building.  I also moved the projector out the light area to add another element to the building environment.


It didn’t take them long to start exploring our new area!  B got busy moving around the color paddles to see how they looked projected around the room.


It didn’t take long before B had an audience to see how they colors looked when they were manipulated on the overhead projector.


The light also provided a very soft glow that made it the perfect spot for building.  I love seeing the whole group working on a building together.  Above they made a large building with the unit blocks, LED candles, and the large animals.  They spent a great deal of time here during the morning.


After the next few days I added translucent letters to the overhead projector, and it was interesting to see how the letters added a new level of play to the projector.


Immediately they loved to see all of the letters on the ceiling.  Each child wanted to see “their letter” on the ceiling.  As soon as their letter was projected they would climb up to the loft to touch their letter on the ceiling.




After we explored the letters on the overhead for a few days, we also explored the letters in  our names using paper and pencil.  These little crayons the kids are using are called “flip crayons.”  They are purposely made very short and encourage the correct pencil grip when children are using them.  We made these name puzzles by cutting strips of paper and using one piece per each letter in their name.  Each child they wrote their letters down the strip of paper as many times as they could to practice their letters.  Once they were finished we mixed up the pieces and they put their names back together again.



It was neat to see children’s names start to appear all around the room in different places.


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Light and Shadow Project Revisited



We have experimented with a few different set ups with our light and shadow project.  This year I tried a new approach to the overhead projector.  I moved the projector to a high traffic area in our classroom, and hung up a sheet to give the students a nice clean image from the blocks and projector.  Then we stacked blocks on top of our platform to observe the change in shadows and colors on the screen behind the blocks.



Of course we got busy playing with the blocks, adding different materials, putting up the tea light, and peg dolls.  They got right to work.



Later on I added the color lens basket to the overhead area, and this is what they did with all of the color disks.  They also started to dance on the platform in front of the projector.



We explored penguins on our light table this January!



Played with gems, magnatiles, interlocking blocks on the overhead as well.



The creations were quite spectacular!



In February we explored pink dyed salt on the light table with heart gems and little glass cups. 



M always seems to be one of our most avid light explorers!


I am excited to introduce a shadow puppet theatre this month to go along with our fairy tales unit.  They always enjoy exploring light and it’s fascinating qualities in the classroom.  There truly are so many ways to use the light table and the overhead projector!