Princess Sand

The prestigious title of ‘Princess Royal’ dates back to 1642 when Queen Henrietta Maria, spouse of Charles I, wanted an Anglicised version of the French title ‘Madame Royale’.

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The current Princess Royal is Anne, only daughter of the current Queen. The second child of The Duke of Edinburgh and The Queen was born at Clarence.

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Because we have been learning all about English royalty this week, we spent one day discussing princesses and their origins.

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To help us interact with this concept in a physical way, we created our very own princess sand!

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Using salt, glitter and jewels, students manipulated the material along with their very own princes and princesses!

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Medieval Ice

During our week of royalty, we learned about princes and princesses.

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Several students were particularly interested in learning about Queen Elsa from the Disney movie Frozen.

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To build upon this interest, we created ice castles out of ice cubes and blue glitter.

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Students selected their favorite princess and built their perfect ice home!

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Medieval Stew

Food preparation is not only a fun, engaging activity for children,  but one that can be used for years as an important teaching and development tool for all ages. For one thing, hands-on cooking activities encourage a sense of pride and confidence.

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The act of following a recipe can encourage self-direction and independence, while also teaching children to follow directions and use thinking skills to problem solve. Working with food also inspires children’s curiosity, thinking, and problem solving, offering new opportunities to make predictions and observations.

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Additionally, creating snacks offers authentic opportunities for students to understand and apply their knowledge of measuring, one-to-one correspondence, numbers, and counting. As they follow a recipe, children organize ingredients, follow a sequence, and carry out multiple directions.

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Lastly, chopping, squeezing, mixing, and spreading materials help develop a child’s small muscle control and hand-eye coordination. For this activity, we used a few ingredients to create a medieval stew (a staple in most medieval homes).

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We used a variety of beans, and placed them into bowls! Once we were finished, we pretended to eat up our yummy creations!

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Play Dough Crowns

March is Medieval Month! This means that we are learning about all things royal!

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Throughout the month, we have been learning about castles, peasants, lords, and ladies. We have learning about how they live, what they live in, and what they wear.

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As part of our royalty week, we constructed crowns using play dough and jewels.

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Students enjoyed manipulating their jewels, and were encouraged to count them once all applied.

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Castle Cups

Block play is a great way to build skills that we ordinarily think of as academic or school-related.

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Blocks are especially beneficial when children are allowed to freely explore and manipulate the blocks in a variety of engaging ways.  Children’s creativity is further expanded through encouragement to make their own accessories from throw away junk items.

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When it comes to blocks, it’s all in their imaginations.. As part of our medieval theme, we spent one week learning about castles. During this week, we constructed castles with a variety of different materials. For this one specifically, we created castles out of golden cups. Students were encouraged to create their structures, and then once finished, to count them.

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Castle Block Play

Provocations are materials or the way we present materials to create a context where the child can explore.

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They are designed to encourage to extend their thinking.

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Provocations provide a challenge to move children to deeper levels of critical thinking of how to design their structures and how to expand into more complex play.

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For this provocation, students were presented with regular blocks, castle blocks, and toilet paper tubes.

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Students were encouraged to construct their “castles” as part of our medieval theme.

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Parking Posts

Medieval residents did not enjoy the paved parking lots that we take for granted today. Horses were the preferred mode of transportation. As travelers shopped, visited friends, and went about their days, they would hitch their horses to posts. These were often adorned with varying colors to indicate class and wealth. The first component of this activity included decorating our “posts” with colorful pipe cleaners and yarn. Each child selected a variety of pipe cleaners that they were to “attach” to their preferred post. This fostered fine motor skills as it involved your little one twisting and fastening the pipe cleaner to make it adhere to the tree. The second component involved dramatic play. Here, your little one rode around on their own horses, exploring their medieval villages and parking their horses when they needed to rest. Dramatic play provides a host of social skills for your little one to practice. When they engage in pretend play, they exercise their negotiation and cooperation skills. They are encouraged to share and dictate roles. As they relate to one another, they foster their problem solving abilities and impulse control. Lastly, they learn to appreciate each actor’s role in the play. These all contribute to building important life skills.

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