I try to find ways to use Perler beads as often as I can. They are colorful, fun and really great for fine motor practice. This week I decided to pair them with some q-tip art sheets I had seen before (download them here) This activity is not as creative as I prefer their art jobs to be but overall I think it worked really well. The kids work on fine motor by practicing to put a perfect sized dot of glue in each circle, when they pick up and place the bead and of course cleaning up all the beads after the center is over.
Here are three other posts I have about Perler beads…
Patterns with Perler beads
More fun with Perler beads
Fine motor with Perler beads
The sequel to the popular Just Dance mix is ready. Just Dance Disney, 16 fun songs to get your class moving. Click here or the image above to check them out. (find the original set here)
Last week my class had a fun experience. We used Google docs to play a live tic-tac-toe game with our twitter friends in Montana (@JonFines class) We had already played a few games with the class over an extended period of time, each taking turns and tweeting once we had played but never at the same time. That was a great way to start but the live game was amazing. As you can see from the picture they were a bit excited to win the first game. Jon’s class won the second game and he sent me a few pictures of his class playing so I could show my class their “setup.” On my side of the game I let one child decide where to move each time it was our turn. The entire class was scheming and planning on how to win but the one child had the final choice each turn. The picture below shows our setup. We are already scheming what is next for our two classes, my ultimate goal is to have Kindergarten kids playing chess against friends across the world.
Here is a link to the Tic-Tac-Toe Template. You are welcome to copy this to your google docs and use. Thanks to Jon for creating it!
I gave my class a fairly simple project this week. The job was to try to build the tallest structure they could using popsicle sticks and hot glue. Yes, we use hot glue a lot (see here.) Each group (2-3 kids) could only make one structure so they had to work together.
I know these types of activities foster creativity and I know they enhance learning but I don’t often get clear proof of these facts. If you look at the picture above the structures are in placed in the order they were built, meaning the structure on the left was the first group and the one on the right was the last group. It is not a coincidence that each group (spread over 3 days) was able to build their structure larger than the group before. As with any fun activity in the room all the kids were paying attention to this center as they worked in other centers. The heard the excitement when the second group figured out how to get a stick to stand vertical. They walked by and talked about how the structure need support sticks (in kindergarten language) to keep it from falling over. They were thinking of their own ideas as they waited for their turn. Beyond that they had a challenge to try to do more than the group before them. Am I training the next Frank Lloyd Wright? Probably not, but we won’t know unless we give them opportunities to find their passions.
Do you have similar activities for your room? I would appreciate you sharing if so, I know I want to include more of these type of activities in my class!