First Great Lesson {It's Elementary! Link Up}

To start the academic year, and the first It's Elementary! link-up, I thought that the most appropriate way to start would be with the First Great Lesson.

Known as The Coming of the Universe, The Cosmic Fable, The God with No Hands, The Story of the Universe or a slight variation of one of these, the First Great Lesson introduces such topics as the Formation of the Universe and the Earth and it's place in the Solar System. It also leads us into geology, the work of air and the work of water.

The purpose of the story is to capture the child's imagination, so we do our best to tell the story in our own words (I admit my first few times I had to rely on palm cards - but this can slow down the process and the wonder).

Each teacher will tell a slightly different version - to fit what is right for their environment. Some may not use all five charts and may do less demonstrations, which may suit their students best. This is part of our role as the prepared adult, to make those decisions with each child in mind.

Charts used:
  • Solar System chart (chart 2)
  • Earth in Relation to the Sun (chart 1)
  • Cosmic Dance (chart 3a)
  • Volcanism (chart 4a)
  • Formation of the Oceans (chart 5a)

Chart 4a Age of Volcanoes/Volcanism

After the lesson the children return to their work, there should be no direct work attached to the story. It is a platform for getting the child interested in various topics, a precursor. Related lessons and work should emerge in the days after the story - allowing the children to make the connection themselves. 

So now (drum roll please!) our first It's Elementary! link-up...

grab button for It's Elementary!
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Logical Agreement Games

Two of the casualties of my computer/blog crash last year were my posts about the Logical Adjective Game and The Logical Adverb Game. The few photo's I was able to recover made me cringe, so I decided to re-do the two posts in one.

These games reinforce the relationships between the noun and the adjective and similarly the verb and the adverb. Children have a lot of fun mixing and matching and making silly combinations, it really appeals to the sense of humour of this age group.

Logical Adjective Game

Following the initial introduction of the adjective it's really important the child gets to explore the relationship between the noun and the adjective.

I love taking an object and asking the children to tell me as many qualities about it as possible, it really helps hone their observation skills. You can leave the object and all the words you make in a basket on the shelf so the child can revisit the exercise again.

It is also good to have a set of nouns and adjectives for matching on the shelf for the children to sort through and discuss which ones fit best together. Sometimes they have an adjective left that doesn't really match the remaining noun, so they have to re-think the other pairs - hence the name Logical Adjective Game.

They can also use the set to pick out as many adjectives to describe one noun.

You can find a set of cards HERE

Logical Adverb Game

After introducing the adverb the children should have opportunities to experiment with how it works with the miniature environment.

It is fun to look at the ways the adverb interacts with the verb.

This works the same way as the Logical Adjective Game - seeing which pairs work best, making up silly pairs of words and choosing as many adverbs that can be used with a particular verb.

You can find a set of cards HERE.

Logical Agreement Games

You can play similar games with the other parts of speech as the child's knowledge and understanding grows.

Do you have other games or ideas for using word cards for the parts of speech? I'd love to hear about them if you do.

Linked to: Learn & Play Link-up

February Give-Away

I have been blogging for over 18 months now. What started out as sharing with some friends and former colleagues has turned into so much more.

There are a few projects in the pipeline that I have planned for 2016, some of which I mentioned in my first post for the year. I had so much fun last month with the Everyone Wins With Montessori give-away, celebrating Trillium Montessori's 3rd blogiversary, I thought I would take this opportunity to have my own little give-away to coincide with the commencement of my newsletter.

To launch my newsletter everyone who subscribes during February will receive an exclusive free printable on March 1st. By signing up you will receive an email once or twice a month with updates, special offers and flash freebies.

How do I subscribe?
It's really easy! You can use the form below OR I have added a "subscribe" button at the top of my sidebar at the right of the screen. Be sure to check your Inbox to confirm your subscription. Everyone who signs up during February will receive an exclusive freebie!