This experience involves children taking turns to discover and label various items from a box.
The learning experience is accompanied with a chant and incorporates many language learning opportunities. This experience should be differentiated depending on the individual child/group level.
This learning experience plan relates to:
- interacting with others
- early language user (12-36 months)
- learning foci: concept development and vocabulary, making meaning and expressing ideas
- teaching practice: play.
- What information has been gathered as evidence to inform this experience?
Links to VEYLDF
Outcome 5: communication
Children interact verbally and non-verbally with others for a range of purposes:
- engage in enjoyable reciprocal interactions using verbal and non-verbal language
- respond verbally and non-verbally to what they see, hear, touch, feel and taste
- attend and give cultural cues that they are listening to and understanding what is said to them.
Victorian Curriculum levels F-2: language
- Understand the use of vocabulary in familiar contexts related to everyday experiences, personal interests and topics taught at school.
- For children to take turns with others.
- For children to understand and use single words and simple phrases incorporating everyday objects.
- For children to listen and jointly attend the experience.
Assessment of learning
Learning is demonstrated when children:
- watch others take their turn, wait for and take turn/s
- respond to and use vocabulary related to the experience (e.g. car, key, apple – depending on vocabulary in focus)
- listen and attend throughout the experience.
- A decorated cardboard box with a lid, e.g. brightly coloured paper and/or pictures stuck onto a shoe box. If children would like to decorate the box, this process can be done prior to commencing the learning experience.
- Everyday objects, animals, toy foods (choose objects according to child’s vocabulary development and current interests or inquiries). Select number of items based on group size and child/children’s attention levels.
Small group (two-five children) or with individual child.
Differentiation should be based on prior assessment of the child/children’s communication skills. Examples of differentiation:
- modifying the vocabulary (simple to more complex). For example, for a child who is using babble and a few single words, educators may choose to focus on animal sounds rather than words, e.g. “moo” for cow.
- reducing/increasing the scaffolding given to each child based on child’s abilities and strengths. For example, using a gesture or sign to prompt child to name the item, saying the first sound in the word or modelling the word.
- for a child who is able to use simple phrases, educators may focus on using size/shape/colour concepts in phrases – e.g. “it’s a big/little cow”.
- Clearly introduce the learning experience:
- “we are going to play a game, it’s called What’s in the Box?” Shake the box as you chant: “What’s in the box, what’s in the box, Anna, Anna, what’s in the box?” Tunes can be made up depending on how best to gain child/children’s attention.
- provide the children with instructions by saying: “When you hear your name, open the box and tell us one thing you’ve found.” Show the child/children the items inside the box, modelling the appropriate vocabulary.
- Implementing the experience:
- choose the first child to start and use their name in the chant/song, e.g. “What’s in the box, what’s in the box, Olivia, Olivia what’s in the box?” Shaking the box as you chant helps to maintain children’s attention
- support the child to open the box, take one item out and label it, showing the rest of the group
- model the appropriate language for the children throughout using parallel talk, e.g. “Opening the box, it’s a cup.”
- encourage the child to label the item by asking “what is it?”
- depending on the child’s language development, educators may model the word for them to imitate or provide a hint such as the first sound in the word e.g. “k’’ (for cup)
- expand on what the child has said, e.g. child: “apple” educator:” "it’s a red apple.”
- move onto the next child, praising the child/children for their listening, singing and talking as appropriate
- continue turns until all items have been taken out of the box and all children have had a turn.
- Consolidate the learning experience:
- to consolidate the vocabulary learning, revisit all items at the end of the experience, by going around the group and saying what each child selected.
- Educators may choose to send this learning experience home for the children to play with their parents–see the parent handout below.
This experience could be extended by:
- changing the items selected to expand children’s vocabulary
- gradually increasing the group size, requiring children to listen and attend for longer periods of time
- incorporating descriptive language such as colour, shape and size to increase children’s concept knowledge and use (e.g. big/little cup, red/green spoon)
- incorporating object functions to extend children’s language understanding and use (e.g. car is for…driving and banana is for…eating)
- including items which focus on a specific initial sound e.g. all items starting with the letter ‘’s’’.
Reflective questions for educators may include:
- what learning has occurred? How do you know?
- what have you realised about the child’s interests, knowledge, and capabilities?
- in discussion with colleagues, what would you plan next to consolidate or extend children’s learning?
Additional/alternate resources for this learning experience
- First 100 Words by Roger Priddy
- People and Places and at the billabong by Debbie Austin
- The Very Hungry Caterpillar – Touch and Feel Playbook by Eric Carle
- Where’s Spot? By Eric Hill
Related learning experience plans
Links to sections