Category Archive: Be a PhD

Information about children's learning and development paired with simple materials and activity ideas. Read on and earn your PhD!

ESL/ELL Instruction – It’s easier than you think!

Whether you have ESL children or not in your classroom, having a variety of word games to be played by pairs of students or small groups is ideal. Pocket charts are great for these types of games. The key is to do activities where all students can interact and move around.

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What’s your name?

So it’s time for your Kindergarteners to learn the letters of the alphabet. I mean really learn the letters. They all can sing the ABC song, but can they really point to each letter and identify it? Probably not. (And that’s fine by the way). I suggest using the children’s names to jumpstart your exploration into letters.

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Make-Your-Own Light Table (and add some Reggio Emilia to your life)

Before becoming a college professor and developing my Early Childhood Education program, I was privileged enough to teach infants, toddlers and preschoolers at a Reggio Emilia-inspired laboratory school at Virginia Tech. While a teacher at the school, I worked deeply with the Reggio philosophy and was able to see what can happen when teachers listen to …

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Adding Letters to Puzzle Play

While playing with this animal puzzle one afternoon, Miss H decided to add a new material. After we had put all of the animals together and were talking about what each animal was, she got up, went to her toy shelf, and came back with her container of letters.    

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Fun with “Picture Cards”

Turn flash cards into a “Picture Card Game!” Make a pile on the floor and search around with your toddler or preschooler and find ones that you recognize. See how many she can identify and pay attention to which ones she chooses to pick up. Can she identify the pictures and/or tell you about them?

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Sensory Play – Using Sensory Bins and Tables

Sensory Play Week! Make your own sensory tables with different size/height plastic bins. What have you filled them with?

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Puzzle Time!

It’s PUZZLE time! Buy your puzzle rack when your baby is born and add puzzles as they grow! I’ll tell you what puzzles to introduce at what ages and what you can expect your infant, toddler and preschooler to do and learn from them.          

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From Reading to Retelling

Keeping reading and retelling stories with your infants, toddlers and preschoolers. After reading a book go one step further and retell with manipulatives. Try these for Jan Brett’s “The Mitten.” Great as masks or as felt board pieces.    

Books and Reading with Infants, Toddlers and Preschoolers

There are different types of books and literacy materials that you can introduce as children grow from infants to toddlers to preschoolers.              

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Introducing Magnetic Letters

Magnetic letters are for all ages AND are cheap and easy to find.              

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