In Early Childhood Education, planning hands-on activities into our lessons becomes as natural as breathing. We know by experience that children learn by doing… and this doing isn’t doing worksheets, but doing the things children naturally do—explore, experiment, discover, try out new things. Using their senses, their whole body, their curiosity to learn. Our job as teachers is to give them a safe, conducive environment to do just that.
Sooner or later, though, most of us reach the place where our creativity dries up… at least for awhile. And we feel as if we’ve been milked dry of ideas, as if we’ve exhausted the store of helpful, educational activities available in the whole wide world. When that happens, it’s good to have a database of activities to fall back on. These activities should be specific enough to be used to reinforce the lesson, but flexible enough to be adapted for many other lessons.
I’ve found my personal database invaluable… and thought to share one of my favourites today.
This is what I call the Learning Cube. It’s easy to prepare and just as easy to use. All you have to do is to find a cube template, which is not hard at all. Google “cube template” and you should come up with something like this:
Save a copy of it to your computer. Whenever you’re ready to do the activity, print as many copies as you’ll need. (I generally use one for each child.) To do the activity, have the child to decorate the cube according to a few simple guidelines. For example, when I was reviewing vowels the other day, we made our Learning Cube into a Vowel Cube, with one vowel on each side and one side leftover for the name of the cube. After the decorating is complete, have the children cut out the cube and fold the cube into shape and securing the tabs with glue or tape.
**For four year olds and below, you’ll probably need to do the cutting out and pasting for the children… especially the cutting, because their control of scissors is not there yet.
Thought you might like to get a glimpse into my classroom… :)
It’s a great activity! The children have a great sense of accomplishment in creating something 3-D and pretty. Have fun!
Thank you for reading!