Using some space I set up a provocation combining food and counting. I put forth the question, “how many servings?”. Now I don’t expect preschool aged students to read this question, but I do expect them to be curious about what it says and ask for assistance with reading the card. After that, this provocation falls directly into their hands. How they interpret what I’ve set up is entirely up to them.
I love using real pictures for children to look at, think about and figure out. These pictures can spark conversations about what each had for breakfast, lunch, dinner or what they like or don’t like to eat. I am always close by with ears perked to jump in and add to or assist with information to keep the learning process going.
Using fairies to assist with drawing attention sometimes works really nicely because it can add one more dimension to the provocation. With plums being in season right now, this picture is perfect for a conversation starter that children can relate to easily, especially if they’ve been enjoying this particular fruit lately. 🙂
Back to the question card. The purpose of a question card can be to draw attention to, provoke curiosity, open the door to deeper thought and meaningful conversations all centered around acquiring knowledge. The question or questions I come up with are based on what students talk about with each other or things their parents have mentioned to me about their children’s interests and experiences. Paying close attention and listening to children gives me the ideas I need to further their learning. This provocation is promoting social interaction, literacy, math, feelings with likes and dislikes and language skills. You also may not see this right away, but it is also promoting or leaving the door open for children to take risks with trying foods that they may have hesitated with before, but now seeing pictures of and taking part in conversations centering around food, they may want to try food they have not yet given a fair chance.
Hey, how many servings of your favorite foods have you had recently? Or did you try any foods that you’ve shied away from in recent days? I would love to know! Share your experiences! 🙂
Heidi Scott, BA & MIT
The Marigold School of Early Learning 🙂