Dramatic play equipment and props allow children to explore roles/careers, expand language, develop negotiation skills, plan and problem solve. It is an integral and vital part of learning to interact with others. Without these skills children can face difficulties in the coming years.
A variety of investigative materials such as Cuisenaire rods, two and three dimensional shapes, magnifying glasses, prisms and sorting materials allow children to observe, predict, experiment, compare/contrast, collect data and draw conclusions. They also use these materials to begin to understand functions such as one to one correspondence, number sentences, geometry, parts to whole and other mathematical foundation skills.
A wide variety of drawing, painting and sculpting materials will be available in the classroom for children to use to represent their ideas through color, shapes, lines and eventually representational drawing. Process rather than product driven art will allow children to be creative and to develop their fine motor skills. Book making through “picture writing”, dictation and print will allow children to identify themselves as authors and illustrators.
Each classroom will be equipped with a comfortable library area where children can access quality children’s literature and gather to hear and discuss stories. Classrooms will also have listening centers when children can work independently to listen to stories and follow along in books. They will also have inviting writing centers where children can explore many types of writing materials and uses of print. As children get older these writing centers will also include individual word banks that children can use to begin writing and developing their ideas in print form.
Blocks and associated props such as people/animal figures and vehicles allow children to construct designs which symbolize actual objects or structures. Block play enhances flexibility and inventiveness in thinking, creativity, persistence in problem solving, and the ability to think abstractly. Blocks also support the development of math and science concepts such as geometry, fractions, classification, volume, balance, the law of gravity and the properties of matter.