Let the journey be shaped by the curiousity of the child…
In the Netherlands, fall tends to bring a lot of rain. Which is not a problem if you like to go outside and get really wet. Since we don’t always like that option. Fall brings us inside places a lot of the time.
Today we wanted to go out into the woods and collect branches. However, due to the weather we changed our plans and stayed inside. Time for plan B: spend some time on the alphabet.
I prepared by writing the ABC on a piece of paper and put all the play dough and play dough accessories on the table. After these preparations, I just waited to see what would happen. I don’t want to force the boys in an activity they didn’t choose for themselves. It didn’t take long for the curiosity to kick in. “Mama, what is that on the table? Can we play with it?”
In a playful way, Maximan created letters. He gave me instructions on what letters to create and Midiman was just having fun with the Playdough and the accessories. After a while Maximan was done creating letters and continued to create something else.
Letters are very abstract for small children. What is a letter? What can you do with it? What does it mean? When the child creates the letters herself, she gives meaning to that letter. It is getting less abstract. Furthermore, the letter is three dimensional now. The letter can be touched and can be used to play with. It gives a visual image which can be very illuminating.
In a playful way, she learns about this letter and makes it her own. First she creates the letter and second she can close her eyes and feel the form of the letter. Third step would be to talk about the letter, what words start with the letter. Being active in this way with the alphabet enables a child to make a connection with each letter.