The best way to teach preschoolers is to use a hands on curriculum. In the science field that can get messy. Autumn leaves are colorful, but fragile and make it hard to view them first hand in the classroom. I use Discovery Bottles to keep them from crumbling and yet, allow students to get a close up view of the leaves.
I added a few glittery leaves to the bottles to make them more intriguing.. Magnifying glasses are nearby for an even closer look.
Discovery Bottles are a great way to enhance sensory process while helping to focus on a few scientific facts. Two bottles in the science area this month have water, glitter pom pom balls, Make it Glitter, and black and blue coloring. Take care to use very little black coloring, it gets dark fast! Shaking the bottles is just plain fun. The glitter pom pom balls hold up well in liquid and float around when the bottles are moved.
While watching the swirling motion in the bottles questions about day and night, planets, and space lead to dictation and artwork
later in the day. OR just have fun!
Spending time on the beach and collecting shells gives me the materals I need for my next set of Discovery Bottles. I fill the bottles half full of shells and then add playsand to cover all but about an inch of shells. Seal the lids with tape and shake. Each time different shells will come to the top.
Add books about shells to the library and compare pictures with the shells in the bottle. This can lead to dictation, artwork, and charts related to the children’s findings.
My first theme for the summer is Ocean and Beach Life. I live very close to the beach and know my students visit there regularly. The beach is different each day and there always seems to be something new to learn. The classroom library has books about the ocean and beach with a box full of sealife puppets and stuffed animals nearby.
Computers have uploaded all the Freddi the Fish series that I have onhand. There is an old program called O’Dell Down Under for the older students who are ready for a challenge.
I have been busy updating my Discovery Bottles. The one below one has water, a little blue water coloring, Make It Shimmer (from Discount School Supply), shells, and sand. I taped the lid on the bottle to keep it from accidently coming off. The students can cause a storm by shaking the bottle and then watch it calm to see the shells.
I find that mouthwash bottles make excellent Discovery Bottles. They have a better viewing surface and the lid already locks.
The classroom is ready for it’s adventure at the beach! Stay tuned, there is more to come. *hums the Under the Sea theme song*