Monday, 9 December 2013

WORKING ON PUZZLES

This week the children self selected the puzzles. I bought these lovely wooden puzzles a few weeks back as Little "X" found our other puzzles too easy! He is really in to cars so I bought a transport themed one and to encourage the others to give them a go I bought one with animals on... they are very in to their dogs and Rabbits!


Little "R" had a really good go at this puzzle. She turned the pieces around and tried to connect them. She does not yet seem to recognise how when two pieces are put together they make a picture.. She sees them as separate pieces and it appears that she only sees them as shapes fitting together. I explained to her that we needed to find pieces that had the same colour on and that we could try and put those ones together.


Little "I" seems to have an understanding of the "Bigger picture". She looks for pieces that look similar to another piece and twists and turns them until they slot together. She names the pieces that she is looking for. Telling me that she is looking for a piece of dog, rabbit or fish.


When she got stuck, Little "X" stepped in to help. In a moment he can see where each piece needs to be and what way up it goes. I have to remind him to step back and let Little "I" continue after after he helps her with a piece she is finding tricky.
"It goes here, look, I do it for you" as he takes it from her hand and puts it in the correct place. Then he takes another piece.
Little "I" steps back and tells me she can't do it and Little "X" continues placing the pieces in for her.



He can see by sight where most pieces fit but every now and then he moves a piece around the board, holding it next to other pieces and turning it around until he sees how it can fit together.


The girls work on the transport puzzle together, They talk about where they think the pieces should go. They point out colours that match and parts of the same vehicle as they work out where each bit fits. Little "R" seems to be understanding the concept of "Bigger picture" a bit better and is enjoying working it out with the help of a friend.


After a while she runs to the playroom and brings in a slot in puzzle. She tells me she is going to do her numbers.


She starts to point to the objects under each number and counts how many of each there are. Then she looks for the number that fits in the hole. Some of them she recognises, others she has to guess at. Unlike the other puzzle, she can by sight, see where each number fits. She can recognise the shape of the hole and match the inset piece.


Little "I" watched with interest and waited patiently for her turn. Then she counted the items using her finger to keep track as she did so. She also recognised some number shapes but others she went by shape rather than number recognition. This is a good toy for joining the counting with the number recognition. It is self corrective. The correct number will only fit in the correct hole so once you have counted the objects you can only put the corresponding number over the top of them.



CHARACTERISTICS OF EFFECTIVE LEARNING:
 Each child found the puzzles engaging and even the children that found it tricky were keen to keep trying. They self selected this activity and that provided them with the motivation to have a go and keep trying. They were all involved and concentrating. 
Little "X" made links with past puzzle experience and this helped him to use the tools he already had to complete the puzzle with ease. He has a clear eye for shape and how things fit together. I will look for some more challenging puzzle for him to try. 
Little "R" is starting to make a link between the pictures on the puzzle pieces and how they link to the whole picture. She is finding out and exploring how to make the picture by adding all the pieces and linking them together.
Little "I" has some knowledge of how to find the right piece to join to another. She looks at the puzzle and tells me what she needs to find. 
All of the children enjoyed achieving what they set out to do and were happy for their friends to help them. Working together and sharing ideas to complete the puzzles.

Today's play, meets the following EYFS Prime and specific areas
  • Communication and Language
  • Personal, Social and Emotional Development
  • Physical Development
  • Mathematics 

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