Throughout May, the Pre-Toddler B class completed a unit on plants and soil. During this unit of study, I noticed the children were most intrigued when water was incorporated into activities. Whether it was watering the plants in the Pre-Toddler garden, mixing soil and water to make “mud pies” or just washing their hands, the children loved splashing around in water.
Therefore, in June, I initiated a unit on “water play.” I hadn’t realized how many opportunities water would provide for extended learning and discovery in all developmental areas. Water play encouraged the children’s physical development and hand/eye coordination (pouring), strengthened their fine motor skills (squeezing water bottles), and encouraged their social and emotional development (learning how to work and cooperate with one another). The children learned basic math concepts and words such as more, less, empty and full.
One of the highlights was exploring the water spigot outside the school building. I demonstrated how to turn the spigot on and off, and then gave each child a plastic cup so they could practice filling and pouring from it. Now each time the children see a spigot by the playground, they immediately run to it and try turning it on and off.
Featured Project by Caroline Zomer: Water Play