one simple, 3-4 foot piece of yarn could equal a morning literally loaded with learning?
Call it a squiggle, throw the mystery word, "imagine" in the mix and WAH LAH!, learning in it's purest form.
Motivated, fearless learning lead by trial and error, cause and effect, talking, sharing, teamwork, imagination, pride, invention, problem solving and pure, pure fun all sparked from a well-placed, purposeful plop (see definition below)!
Plop (plop!) n: a book, song, word or object that has the ability to inspire imagination, play and curiosity. It acts as a catalyst to spark all sorts of fantastic learning opportunities.
|The only direction I gave when the children each picked up their own squiggle was:|
"IMAGINE! What could your squiggle be?"
A child's imagination is different then that of an adults. A child's is on standby or ready alert at all times, ready to imagine at a moment's notice. Adults, on the other hand, sometimes have to wake up their imagination from a deep sleep and give it a chance to freshen up before it is able to deliver.
Test your imagination with the following pictures. See how yours stands up to the imagination of a child!! You will find the "answer" at the end of the blog. Keep in mind, this is your imagination...so there are no wrong answers....simply different answers. See if you can think like a child!
|Avery used her squiggle to make a pond|
for Jack to go fishing in!
|Ethan decided he wanted to catch something real...which opened up even|
In an instant, Avery's moment of fishing transformed the environment into a room full of tying and pulling. There was problem solving, trial and error and teamwork going on everywhere you looked. The squiggle had become a tool, a means to move something.
|Ty is pulling the bucket around the room. Bergen is making|
|Bergen was the first to pull a chair around....and then, the addition of passengers was genius!!|
|Two year old Lindsey decides pulling stuff around looks like fun.|
So she goes to work wrapping a bucket with her squiggle.
|It doesn't take long....|
|before she realizes her method did not work.|
|Failure did not keep her from trying again!|
Try after try, with each try involving lots of small motor work and eye hand coordination.
Finally, he was successful and the pirate ship set sail across the wide open ocean!
|Alayna was VERY proud of her discovery!!|
In the photo below, we see Jack. Jack has never been a follower. He prefers to play his own way, and that play always ends up with a grand discovery. Notice the squiggle in the container? He discovered if he dropped his arm very swiftly, the squiggle would come flying out! Children are natural scientists. He repeated the flying squiggle over, and over, and over again. Each time with the same amount of success. He also tried fancier moves with his arms to see if it affected the flight pattern of the squiggle. I was mesmerized watching his process of learning.
So then. How does your imagination compare with that of a child?
PHOTO A: A pirate head (wearing a pirate hat)
PHOTO B: A turtle (created by a 2 yr old I might add)
PHOTO C: A hood (like the hood of a jacket) :)
PHOTO D: A balloon
One last thing....there is a book called "The Squiggle" but please, don't read it to your children prior to their squiggle exploration. See what their amazing minds can create with the squiggle first!! Maybe even make your own book called "The Squiggle"!!
Also -- if you don't have this book...no worries!! The book does NOT make the activity! While it's nice to have a book to go along with an activity, it's not always necessary! Don't let the fact that you do not have "The Squiggle" keep you from plopping squiggles!