Pre-Ks on the runway of Plefsis dance studio, in Athens! Actual life-derived learning.
Talking about winter fruits in our English pre-k class. We introduced new vocabulary by giving fresh fruit to the children to feel, smell and taste. With their eyes closed they were able to identify and name them all!
Then, we made a fruit salad. After we ate it all we played games in the yard.
We rolled plastic fruit to see how far they can go…
….hang them high and tried to hit them with improvised bats.
We also had a real grocery store set up in our dramatic play area!
The next day we decided to make smoothies. We came up with a recipe….
….executed it and decided whether we like it or not!
(by Claire Hadjinikolaou, English teacher in Athens school)
Living in a hot Mediterranean city like Athens, snow is a rare thing to see, downtown. But today, it was one of these days!
Being unfamiliar with snowy weather, the Municipality of Athens advised all schools to remain closed. However, a brave play-based school like Dorothy Snot is not afraid of some snow flakes!
The sure thing is our kids loved it. Being able to play with snow in the heart of the city is such an unusual experience down here. Not to mention that most of our 4 and 5 y.o. had not ever seen Athens in white!
Play in life-derived conditions is always the most exciting thing for children. And we are dedicated to keep providing this kind of play!
Returning from Christmas Holidays, pre-Ks started describing how they spent Christmas time. Each one had a story to tell about relatives visiting his/her house or about a beautiful gathering at a friend’s home.
So, they decided it would be a good idea to invite over the post-toddlers’ class, for the first tea party of the year!
They wrote and distributed the invitation and prepared a welcome note!
They got excited by their own creations (look below Anastasis and George astonished in front of the welcome note they wrote, hanging on the wall!!)
They rearranged tables and chairs in such a way that we could all sit together! Children from both classes had lot of fun!!!
Having finished the tea party and after cleaning the class, Rosa said: “I really loved that! Can we have one more tomorrow, please?”
(by Spyridoula Patouna, teacher in Pre-K class, in Athens)
Cornelius Crick, the famous detective of our favorite book, sent pre-K class a letter! He was informed about our talent in solving problems and finding answers to mysteries…
Cornelius’ first request was to get to know us better. He asked for our portraits.
Children drew them with pleasure! But, just a wall full of our portraits was not enough.
Kids also wanted to add their names under their own portrait.
So,we played a game after which each paper obtained the right name, on it!
We are now ready for the next Cornelius Crick’ challenge…
(by Spyridoyla Patouna, teacher in pre-K class in Athens)
During the first days of school this year, children in pre-K class read the book “The disappearance of Dorothy Snot”, the book out of which our school was named of!
As the story was moving on, Dorothy started sending letters to the children. Green envelops began to appear in class, very often. Dorothy was asking for help and ideas.
In one of her letters, she sent us some photos of her last trips around the world and asked for our imagination: Was it possible for us to construct with those images by using toys and other materials?
Children thought of it, worked together, and responded to Dorothy’s request with great success!
(by Spyridoula Patouna, teacher in pre-K class in Athens)
We spent the whole week preparing our fairy tea party which took place on Thursday and Friday in the woods. After reading in school the legend of the rainbow fairies, we decided to help these little fairies make a rainbow.
In school, we put on the wings we made out of hangers and rope and practiced how to use the fairy dust and learnt a few spells! We mixed paints, just to find out that we only need three colors to make so many more.
We even tried to make our colors shine by sprinkling some fairy dust on them.
On Thursday and Friday, we had a wonderful day in the woods!
We looked around for some fairy signs and while looking we found some acorns instead and a little tortoise wandering around.
We built our fairy welcome houses in the trees and decorated them the way we wanted.
And used what we found to make a rainbow.
(by Claire Hadjinikolaou, English teacher in Dorothy Snot, Athens)
Our friend playworker Meynell visits our Athens school!
In our play-based school, we always look for opportunities to mingle with fascinating reality.
A coming cornerstone for Athens, our city, is the relocation of National Library of Greece and of Greek National Opera to the very new and impressive SNF Cultural Center, near city’s coast.
Since 1903, National Library of Greece has been located into a historical building in the very heart of the city, designed by Theofilos Hansen and constructed by the great Ernst Ziller. This status-quo will end by September 2016, so these days it was really the very last chance for our pre-K and summer campus kids (kindergarteners & alumni) to visit it.
Children of both classes have been working lately in a variety of projects on sea and volcanoes. So, it was a great opportunity for kids to visit the old building and utilize library services in their research, getting thus a good idea on why we need libraries!
Library policies are tough and usually do not allow hosting preschoolers, but our fantastic kids proudly made it!
Children searched their subjects in library computers….
….identified the needed sources….
…and copied all information needed.
All in all, it was a fantastic day for our kids. They grasped a lifetime experience, just days before it become a gone-for-good memory!
(big thanks to Library staff Ms. Vasiliki Tsigkouni, Tonia Pateropoulou and Agathi Papamichael, for their assistance.)
Yesterday Sunday July 3, it was the summer party day for toddlers, post-toddlers and pre-K class. Our parties are always free play sessions, based in stimuli and projects children have been engaged the past months.
Pre-K class had the unique chance this year to visit one of the last living Greek art legends, the sculptor Mrs. Natalia Mela. It was such a moving experience for everybody!
By the use of everyday loose parts and other elements, our children created in class a number of fantastic artworks…
…and enjoyed a wonderful 3-month project.
So, it was normal to include this experience in summer party and connect their play to the sculpturing project. They worked in couples: one was the sculptor and the other was the sculpture! See the video:
Τhis is what life-derived learning is all about: Encouraging children to master unique lifetime experiences and then allowing them to build their own worlds.
2016 pre-Ks developed a strong love-for-sculpturing DNA, for life….