Thursday, September 8, 2016

Senses: Sight

 Teaching preschoolers about their senses is amazing. They just eat it up, and love it all. This year I got to teach 3 of the five senses, and wish I could have done all five!

Unfortunately being the teacher, I cannot always stop to take photos of everything, but once I get them going on an activity I can sneak in a few photos.

For a starter activity we had an eye doctor station set up. A simple eye chart, lab coat, glasses without lenses (cheap sunglasses with the lenses popped out work well), mirrors, and a wooden spoon to cover one eye. If they have never been to an eye doctor, they may need a little instruction.

To introduce the theme I had a basket full of things that affect our vision, such as glasses, sunglasses, contact case, magnifying glasses, binoculars, etc. I let each child have a turn to choose one item to take out and tell what it did, etc. This was a great opportunity to educate children about glasses, since Mr. W. had been in glasses for not quite a year. We talked about how glasses help him to see things clearly, and discussed other people they know that wear glasses. I am thankful that children in glasses are much more common than when I was growing up. I think educating children about them makes them much less likely to tease someone who wears them. We also talked about eyes, eye color, shape, etc, and how most everyone's eyes have the same function.

Then we practiced how well their sight works. I had a cookie sheet with items on it, and had them close their eyes while I took one thing off, and when they opened their eyes they had to identify what was missing. We had a letter I theme that day, so I included our letter I from our LeapFrog Word Whammer, and then just added other random objects. Since these were young 3 year olds, I didn't put very many. I let each child have a turn figuring out which item was missing, otherwise you typically have one child yelling out the answer, and the other kids feeling sad. :)

I found this great activity (and other senses activities) at Preschool Rainbow: Senses. I had a basket full of mirrors (obviously use supervision as mirrors can break easily), pocket mirrors, etc. I bought whatever mirrors I could find at the $ store. It was a small investment for a few mirrors. We examined ourselves in the mirrors, and also walked around the house examining our reflections in other items, such as spoons, foil, windows, etc. Then we did a mirror walk (this was one of my favorite things to do as a kid). Hold a mirror under your nose and look into the mirror, it looks like you are walking on the ceiling. My kids loved it as much as I always did!
 (please excuse the mess, we were learning)

the pocket mirrors quickly became "phones"

The second day we had other things to explore with our eyes, a microscope, prism, colored cellophane, binoculars (again), etc. The children just loved checking out each thing. It was very low key, but great learning was had!

For music we sang, "Popcorn Popping" this is an LDS children's song. It is not religious, just a fun spring song, but also talks about what we see. You can see the lyrics and actually hear the song through the link.
We also sang "That's What My Eyes Can Do" which I found at Nuttin' But Preschool. Its cute and easy, and to the tune of The Hokey Pokey.
Your eyes can look up.
Your eyes can look down.
Your eyes can squeeze tightly shut. 
Or you can circle them round and round.                                               
You do the blinky, blinky
And shuffle them from left to right.
That's what my eyes can do. Yeah!

Grandmother's and Grandfather's glasses are also fun finger plays.

Grandmother's Glasses                                                                                                                   
These are grandmother's glasses
(make glasses over eyes)
This is grandmother's cap
(peak hands on head)
This is the way she folds her hands
(fold hands)
And puts them in her lap.
(place in lap)

Grandfather's Glasses                                                                                                                               These are grandfather's glasses
(make glasses over eyes)
This is grandfather's cap
(flat hand on head)
This is the way he folds his arms
(cross arms on chest)
And sits there just like that.
(look straight ahead)

and of course we played I Spy!!

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