Music, Math, and Science! By Mary Cocoa Children learn concepts and develop through hands-on experiences. They learn to observe, question and be curious about their inside and outside environment. When children are encouraged to experiment and discover new things they acquire new concepts and new ideas which they transfer to other areas of development. Planned activities that explore music, math, and science can teach children many concepts and help them develop all domains. Children learn about music concepts by participating in activities that allow them to be active participants, stimulate their
Music, Math, and Science for Preschoolers By Mucous and playing drums. For this activity you will need coffee cans, paper, stickers, crayons, glue, and tape. To begin this activity have children decorate a coffee can. Once they have personalized their drum gather them on the carpet. Tell the children to bang their drums with their hands, then say stop. Play a little game of stop and go with them so they have time to experiment with the drum. When the children are quiet tell them that you want them to play their drum quietly and then loud, quiet and loud.
Then fast and slow. Then ask them to keep their drums quiet and listen to you sing and drum. Sing a simple song and keep the beat, then ask the children to play and sing with you. This activity can be done with any age! The developmental goals for this activity are: Physically – fine motor skills will be developed when decorating the can and gross motor skills will be developed when playing the drum. Social/Emotional – The children will have conversation when making and playing the drums. They will have to share and ask others for things when making the drum.
And they will sing and feel emotions while playing the drum. Cognitively – They are learning about sound patterns, opposites, movement, beats, memory, and rhythm. Language – The children are communicating and signing. I implemented this activity with my class of 4 year olds. First off they were very excited to show me the coffee can they brought from home. They talked about the size “Look at this really, really big can Miss A! ” or where they got it from “My Grandma Kay has been saving this for a me. She drinks a lot of coffee with Grandpa Steve! Then we decorated the cans which involved lots of communication with their peers “l like your drum” or “Can I have a ladybug sticker? Peeling the back off the stickers really worked their fine motor skills. The children were very proud of their drums (emotional development) and as soon as they were done they would make their way to the carpet to play them. Once everyone was gathered on the carpet I told everyone to stop (l had to wave my hands around to get everyone’s attention! ) and then I said go and stop and go and stop! The children thought this was a funny game.
I also noticed some children turning their drum sideways and upside down. This experimentation with the drum was building cognitive and physical placement. Then I asked the children to play their drums quietly and then I asked them what the opposite of quiet was… LOUD. We also played fast and slow which built cognitive and physical development. Lastly, I asked the children to listen to me sign one of our class songs and watch me play my drum. “Friends, friends, we all need friends. Friends stick together you squeeze. Friends, friends, we all need friends. Good friends like you and meme! I had the children Join me and after about 5-6 times signing the song the majority of the children were beating the drum to the beat! I feel this activity supported all the developmental domains. Through planned activities children can learn about math concepts such as; color, shapes, sizes, counting, comparing, sorting/matching, sequencing, counting, and math vocabulary. An example of a complete math activity would be a nature walk/ scavenger hunt. The developmental goal for this activity is to learn how to compare, classify, and sort.
For this activity you will need; large plastic drinking cups that are hole punched on each side and strung with pipe cleaners for handles, colored paper, walk and they are allowed to put anything in their basket that they find. When you return from your walk have the children sit at the tables and put different colored paper on the table (you will use these to sort). Then ask the children to dump out their baskets and see what they found. Ask the children if anyone found a stick and if they did to put it on the yellow paper. Then ask if anyone found a rock and if they did, to put it on the red paper and so on.
Once you have sorted all the items have the children visually guess which paper has the most and least on it, then count the items. This activity can be done with ages 3 and up. The developmental goals for his activity are: Physically – fine motor skills will be developed pinching and grasping the nature items and gross motor skills will be developed while walking. Social/ Emotional – The children will have many conversations with each other while they are on a walk and communicate when sorting the items. They will have to share and cooperate with their peers.
Cognitively – They are learning about nature, counting, sorting/matching, classification, color, shapes, sizes, comparing, and math vocabulary (most and least). Language – The children will communicate with one another. You can also write the word of what the item is you are sorting on the paper. This way the children learn the word with the associated item. I implemented this activity with my 4 year old preschoolers. When I gave everyone a bucket they were so excited “l going to find the most stuff’ and “We can pick up anything? That’s so cool! Then we were off for a walk. I think we got 3 steps out the door before some children were already picking things up and putting them in their bucket. I realized by the time we had made it half a block that a walk was not the best idea because we topping all the time , so I stopped the children and told them that we would walk to the big green space and that they could fill their baskets there. Once at the field I released the children to run freely and gather nature items. And run they did! (physical development) They filled their buckets in less than 5 minutes.
Then we walked back to the school. Once we were back at the school we dumped out the baskets and began sorting. (cognitive development) I noticed that a few children did not want to sort as a group and they were not adding their items to the papers. I eave these children a paper that I drew sections on and asked them to sort their own items (emotional development). I had the children guess which paper had the most and the least and then we counted them. (cognitive & language development) The children loved this activity!!
The room was buzzing with conversation! The children were comparing items to other items, and some children were even using the items to make people (we have been doing a lot of person drawing lately. Cognitive development). This activity went on for quite a while and then a child asked if she could get some glue and make a picture. I agreed that was a great idea and we all made nature collages. Planned science activities can also help children develop concepts such as observing, predicting, reflecting, and problem solving.
Science experiments help children become aware of the world around them, experiment with materials within their space, start to question and compare findings, and use information to test their understanding in new situations. (BBC, Learner notes) An example of a complete science activity is the chemical reaction of baking soda and vinegar. The developmental goal for this activity is to learn how to predict what will ill need; 2 clear Jars, water, vinegar, baking soda, pipettes, baking sheets, and food coloring. First gather the children around a table and show them the 2 Jars.
Pour half a cup of baking soda into both Jars. Then ask them to predict what will happen if you pour water into the Jar. Then pour the water in and mix it. Then show them the vinegar and ask them to predict what will happen when you add it to the second Jar. Will the same thing happen? Then pour the vinegar in and watch the children’s shocked faces! Ask them why the Jars did different things. After you get few answers ask them what was different about the Jars. Then tell them that the reason the second Jar was all bubbly was because something called a chemical reaction happened between the vinegar and the baking soda.
Then tell them that you want them to make chemical reactions too. Give each child a baking sheet covered with baking soda, a pipette, and a small container filled with colored vinegar. Have the children pick up the pipettes fill it with vinegar and squirt it on the baking soda cookie sheet. Let the fun begin! This activity can be done with ages 3 and up. The developmental goals for this activity are: Physically – fine motor skills will be plopped pinching and grasping the pipettes.
Social/Emotional – The children will have many conversations with each other while during the class experiment and when they squeeze the pipettes. Cognitively – They are learning about observing, predicting, reflecting, problem solving and colors. Language – The children will communicate with one another and learn new vocabulary such as predict, observe, and chemical reaction. I implemented this activity with my 4 year old preschoolers. I gathered them around the table and told them we were going to be scientists and scientists do something called experiments.
And the reason they do experiments is because when you don’t know the answer to something you do an experiment to figure out the things that you don’t know. I took the Jugs of water and vinegar around and let the children smell them. They did not like the vinegar smell. LOL! Then I showed them the two Jars and showed them the baking soda box “We have that stuff in the fridge! ” said one girl. I poured half a cup into each Jar and then asked them to predict what would happen if I added water to the baking soda “It’s going to go BOOM” said a boy. IA, or turn green! Said another boy. “Those are very good prediction boys (language development)” I said let’s see and I poured the water in the jar. To the children’s disappointment it did nothing then I mixed the mixture with a spoon and a little girl said “Look it’s all white in there? ” I said to the kids “So when I added the water nothing happened and then I mixed it up and the water turned a little bit white. Can you predict what will happen when I put smelly vinegar in the Jar with the baking soda? ” The same boys replied “It will go BOOM! ” aim, and turn green too!