Experiences in Geomotry and more

I obtained these blocks at a training I attended for free. If you want to order some, they are over here.
Yes, it does say they are for Kindergarten to 4th grade, however they are very appropriate for the 4 year old if it's a teacher guided activity.
It has some small pieces that a child who explores orally will need to be closely watched; but everyone else will be fine.
I used the term teacher guided activity, let me explain what I mean. First, let's look at how I set it up:
It's a very simple set up. I get some masking tape out and tape 6 squares on the table. This is a defined workspace for each child who would be participating. I then put a handful of shapes into each square (taking out the spheres because these just turn into throwing and destruction tools).
I put the tape down to give them for children who are working on Shared use of Space. (For those using the DRDP-r, this is measure 11). This allows a child who is possessive of their materials to have a clear line of what is theirs.
I use tape and not trays because it opens up the children much more to sharing their materials and also it is very difficult to build on some trays.
When the children come to the table, the teacher is sitting at one of the spaces as well. Remember, this is a teacher guided activity. When the children first come to the table I give them about 2 minutes to explore. I explore the items as well. Stack them, line them up, move them around.
Start "sports casting" what they are doing: "Ian is lining his up on the tape. Karla, are you stacking your up? I see you have made many little houses."
Then the guiding starts..."I'm going to stack mine by colors. Watch! Can you do this?"; "Ian, I wonder what you have more of, cubes or cylinders. How can we find out? Maybe if we line them up next to each other."; "Karla, can you make all your stacks look the same?"
These are suggestions only; if they go along with it, great. If not, at this point they may just walk away. Typically they will walk away if the task you give them is too challenging, so make sure that you are well aware of their ability level when you are guiding them through these challenges.
Also, make sure you are praising the work they put into it, not the work itself: "Wow Ian, you worked for a long time lining those up."; "Karla, high five for sticking with it. You're towers kept falling over but you figured it out!" You are praising the process, not the result. This is very important.
These shapes and this activity work on geometry, patterning, teacher interactions, peer relations, sticking with a task. For those using the DRDP-r, the measure numbers are: 11, 13, 16, 17, 24, 26, 28, 35.

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