Exploring stages in a lifetime with children
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Videos - Sesame Street

Videos - Sesame Street | Exploring stages in a lifetime with children | Scoop.it
Watch free online videos of your favorite Sesame Street moments. Enjoy music videos and funny clips featuring Elmo, Abby, Grover and all your other favorite Muppets.
Kimberley McMartin's insight:

This Sesame Street video presents the wedding of Maria and Luis to children through the medium of song, using the concept of a wedding to introduce us to a number of different life stages, including childhood, the growth of children into adults, marriage and death. The song is performed from multiple perspectives, with various family members and friends expressing their perspective of the wedding and, in doing so, reflecting on the concept of life. For example, Maria’s mother describes how she used to dress up her daughter as a child, but now she is getting married, while later reflecting on the notion of death by singing, “I wish her father could have lived to see this day”. Ultimately, the song constantly reiterates the fact that these life events are “wonderful”, aligning with the outcome CCS1.1 in communicating the importance of the past and present, in addition to events in a lifetime (Board of Studies, 2007, p. 48).

 

Prior to watching the video, it may be useful for the teacher to generate a discussion amongst the students about their understandings of love and marriage. As Gilbert and Hoepper (2014) state, students must have “sufficient background to an issue or question to make an activity valid and worthwhile” (p. 68). It may be necessary for the teacher to inform their class that love comes in many different forms, and that marriage is only one means of expressing love. Throughout the discussion, the teacher can constantly be monitoring the students in terms of their language skills and ability to communicate ideas orally, while considering the depth of understanding they have regarding the topic. In order to keep track of the ideas generated in the discussion, software such as Kidspiration (http://www.inspiration.com/kidspiration) can be utilised to create mind-maps, the user-friendly nature of the site allowing children to actively participate in the creation of such maps (Gilbert & Hoepper, 2014, p. 167). As the video is multi-faceted, it may be useful to watch it more than once, following the viewing with another discussion on what the children saw in the wedding ceremony. It is important to emphasise the many generations present (grandparents, parents, children) in order to encourage students to consider the different stages in a lifetime. As part of the song is sung in Maria and Luis’ native Spanish, it would be useful to explain to students how different cultures celebrate the same events in different ways. This could lead to an assessment, in which students research their own culture and how events are celebrated, presenting this information in any form they deem appropriate (e.g. written, oral, video, etc.). As Enquiring Minds (2014) emphasise, teachers of Stage 1 must encourage students to draw on their own lives as a basis for asking questions about the lives of others (para. 2). Through first examining their own lives, children will develop a framework for understanding the traditions of others. Therefore, this video allows students to explore, not only the lives of their local community, but also a sense of the diversity of the global community.

 

References

 

Board of Studies (2007). Human society and its environment syllabus K-6. Sydney: Board of Studies NSW.

 

Enquiring Minds (2014). Our approach. Retrieved April 2, 2014 from http://www.enquiringminds.org.uk/try_it/our_approach/

 

Gilbert, G. & Hoepper, B. (Eds.). (2014). Teaching humanities and social sciences. South Melbourne: Cengage Learning Australia.

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Family Tree Kids! - Making Family History Fun

Family Tree Kids! - Making Family History Fun | Exploring stages in a lifetime with children | Scoop.it
Kimberley McMartin's insight:

This website provides a link to an interactive PDF document of a family tree, clearly aimed at children due to the appealing appearance (the family tree is an actual tree) and child-friendly language (e.g. instead of being referred to as a “father” or “mother”, a child’s parents are referred to as “dad” and “mum”). Children can type the names and birthdates of their family into the family tree, allowing them to make connections between different family members and their relationships.

 

Despite being aimed at children, this document could be a little too difficult for a Stage 1 student due to the small print and an unfamiliarity with the concept of a PDF document. However, it is a wonderful interactive resource for exploring the curriculum focus on family and life stages. Therefore, it is necessary for the teacher to make a few modifications to the way the children use the program. Teachers can utilise the PDF as a model for their own family tree PDF or worksheet, simplifying the vocabulary and removing some of the family members (e.g. great-great-grandparents – this may be too confusing for young children and beyond the scope of even their parents’ knowledge). Indeed, using a family tree as a format for examining stages in a lifetime provides students with an alternative means of accessing information, adhering to the concept of students learning in different ways and therefore being entitled to “a broad range of teaching and learning activities” (NSW Department of Education and Training, 2011, p. 2).

 

Alternatively, teachers can use an interactive Smartboard to display the PDF, working with the children to discover the different members and stages of a family – the children could “invent” a family as a class, making up the names and ages of different family members. Such an activity would be led by the teacher, prompting discussion of the different members of a family and how they all connect to one another. This activity could be extended with the students working in small groups with the technology to invent their own families. It is important that if the teacher intends for the students to attempt creating their own family trees, they model the technology so that the students can experience new software before working more independently (Gilbert and Hoepper, 2014, p. 158). This group work activity could form an assessment, with the teacher examining how students adapt to and interact with technology, as well as their understanding of stages in a lifetime. The teacher might consider questions such as – is the student aware of how old an “old” person really is? Can they identify who is younger or older than themselves? Furthermore, working as a group can allow the teacher to assess the children, Gilbert and Hoepper (2014) stating that group work enables teachers to examine the interpersonal, leadership and communication skills of children (p. 110). This activity would no doubt spark much discussion amongst the students about their own families, encouraging them to examine similarities and differences between them. Therefore, the PDF link provided by this website is a useful tool for teaching Stage 1 students about stages in a lifetime, as it allows students to explore familiar ideas through an alternative, active and collaborative means.

 

References

 

Gilbert, G. & Hoepper, B. (Eds.). (2014). Teaching humanities and social sciences. South Melbourne: Cengage Learning Australia.

 

NSW Department of Education and Training (2011). Curriculum support articles. Retrieved April 2 2014 from http:// www.curriculumsupport.education.nsw.gov.au/ primary/hsie/cs_articles/ index.htm

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"Our People" - a virtual picture book

"Our People" - a virtual picture book | Exploring stages in a lifetime with children | Scoop.it
Kimberley McMartin's insight:

Our People is a virtual picture book written by Joyce Bonner and illustrated by Jodie Burns that describes the various members of an Indigenous family. It is written in both English and the Indigenous Butchulla language. This bilingual approach allows children to appreciate the diversity of families within the Australian culture, as well as encourage them to understand the similarities we share by recognising many family members including parents, grandparents and siblings. The diversity of ages within the story will also encourage children to begin thinking about the concept of life, the family members spanning multiple generations and life stages.

 

Teaching and assessment strategies can be woven together when examining Our People. As this book includes elements of Indigenous culture that may be unfamiliar to Stage 1 children, it is necessary to incorporate a vast amount of discussion into the lesson framework. In doing so, teachers can assess the students’ speaking and listening skills, as well as gauge an understanding of their comprehension of the topic. Gilbert and Hoepper (2014) emphasise the importance of integrating assessment into everyday classroom practice in order to ensure it is viewed as a “natural part of the learning process” (p. 99). Prior to reading the book as a class, teachers can encourage the children to consider their own families, providing them with a means of absorbing “new understandings” of family – that is, giving the students a framework for understanding Indigenous families through an examination of their own familiar life situation (Gilbert & Hoepper, 2014, p. 68). Browett and Ashman (2010) suggest asking the children to draw pictures of their family or bring in photos to show the class and discuss with their peers what makes a family (p. 55). A numeracy strategy could also be incorporated by asking children to consider whether certain family members are younger or older than others. Such an activity can provide the students with not only a framework for understanding the concept of family, but also a basic comprehension of the different stages in a lifetime.

 

Following a discussion, Our People could then be read to the class in both the English and Butchulla language to emphasise that although there is cultural diversity, we all have family and life stages in common. It is also necessary to inform students that Indigenous people speak a variety of languages, ensuring that the diversity of Indigenous culture is acknowledged (Gilbert & Hoepper, 2014, p. 352). It can be useful for the class to examine other resources produced by their local Indigenous community in order to emphasise such diversity (Queensland Studies Authority, 2007, p. 6; NSW Board of Studies, 2008, p. 4). If possible, an Indigenous community member should visit the class in order to provide them with a more personal perspective. Another activity could involve the students creating their own totems. Ultimately, the most important purpose of sharing this virtual book with children is to encourage them to start thinking about how their own families are the same or different to other families, and appreciate that the multiple generations within a family represent various stages in a lifetime.

 

References

 

Board of Studies. (2008). Working with Aboriginal Communities: A guide to community consultation and protocols. Retrieved March 27 2014 from http://ab- ed.boardofstudies.nsw.edu.au/ files/working-with-aboriginal- communities.pdf

 

Browett, J. & Ashman, G. (2010). Thinking globally: Global perspectives in the early years classroom. Carlton South: Education Services Australia.

 

Gilbert, G. & Hoepper, B. (Eds.). (2014). Teaching humanities and social sciences. South Melbourne: Cengage Learning Australia.

 

Queensland Studies Authority. (2007). Selecting and evaluating resources. Retrieved April 2 2014 from https:// www.qsa.qld.edu.au/ downloads/approach/ indigenous_g008_0712.pdf

 

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Our many identities | Global Education

Our many identities | Global Education | Exploring stages in a lifetime with children | Scoop.it
Kimberley McMartin's insight:

This link from Global Education is a lesson plan specifically targeted towards Early Stage 1 and Stage 1 students focusing on the concept of “Our many identities”. Through inviting students to consider their birth and childhood, the lesson plan serves as a starting point for exploring the concept of stages in a lifetime. Indeed, the lesson plan states that one of its outcomes is centred around children understanding the physical and social changes of growing older, and how their community and family celebrate these, which links directly to the syllabus outcome CCS1.1 (Board of Studies, 2007, p. 48). Furthermore, the lesson plan encourages children to examine the birth and childhood of others around the world, allowing them to begin exploring the concept of a worldwide community. Indeed, as Browett and Ashman (2010) state, such activities enable children to “learn about the whole world, not just their own part of it” (p. 7),  allowing them to begin considering cultural diversity and develop empathy towards others, outcomes defined by AusAid (2011) as essential for developing a global perspective (p. 6).

 

The lesson plan provided is immensely detailed in terms of class activities and assessment, however, can be adapted and modified to suit the needs of the class. Indeed, although the lesson plan is targeted towards Stage 1, some activities seem too complex, and may need to be modified. Regardless, each activity suggestion is relevant to the concept of stages in a lifetime. In particular, Activity 1 can be used to encourage students to begin thinking about their lives, and through doing so, serve as a form of assessment. The activity asks students to examine how their birth was celebrated by their family, a task which can be adapted to a written or oral presentation in which the teacher can assess language and other necessary skills. This can then be followed by the lesson plan’s activity revolving around children examining babies from different countries, leading to a discussion of similarities and differences to themselves. Activities 2 and 3 are similar, focusing on childhood but following the same structure as Activity 1. Ultimately, the focus on children all over the world will allow students to begin considering the concept of a global community. Through asking children to first consider their own circumstances before examining children around the world, students will be able to link their own understandings and values to the broader world, expanding their sense of identity and place (Gilbert & Hoepper, 2014, p. 70).

 

One aspect that may require more emphasis than it is given in the lesson plan is providing students with a sense of place. Instead of simply telling the children about the children of different countries, it may be necessary to actually show them where these countries are, particularly in relation to Australia. Gilbert and Hoepper (2014) suggest using ICT resources such as Google Earth, however, there are more hands on approaches available (p. 164). An excellent suggestion is Browett and Ashman’s (2010) game “Pass the globe”, which involves students passing around an inflatable globe to music and, when the music stops, the student holding the globe explains what they can see, including land masses and oceans (p. 33). This would be a fun and exciting way for students in Stage 1 to begin learning about Earth, easing them gently into the concept of a vast and complex world.

 

References

 

AusAID (2011). Global perspectives: a framework for global education in Australian schools. Carlton: Education Services Australia.

 

Board of Studies (2007). Human society and its environment syllabus K-6. Sydney: Board of Studies NSW.

 

Browett, J. & Ashman, G. (2010). Thinking globally: Global perspectives in the early years classroom. Carlton South: Education Services Australia.

 

Gilbert, G. & Hoepper, B. (Eds.). (2014). Teaching humanities and social sciences. South Melbourne: Cengage Learning Australia.

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Celebrating a new baby

Celebrating a new baby | Exploring stages in a lifetime with children | Scoop.it
Have you ever visited a new baby? Come along with Levi as he meets his baby sister for the first time. Find out why...
Kimberley McMartin's insight:

This video by the ABC network explains the event of birth to young children. It is largely told from a child’s perspective, describing what it means for them when a child is born (e.g. a new sibling, someone new to play with). It also examines how different families celebrate the birth of a child. This video is particularly relevant for the concept of change and continuity in Stage 1, which includes a focus on days and events in one’s lifetime (Board of Studies, 2007, p. 48). As a result, this video can provide a springboard for discussion regarding the celebrated events in the students’ lives, encouraging them to consider different life stages and their associated events.

 

The ABC video is accompanied with suggestions for classroom activities that can both precede and follow a viewing of the short film. A great emphasis is placed on discussion, which can be helpful for teachers when assessing both the speaking and listening skills of their students and their understanding of stages in a lifetime (the website suggests asking students whether they have a new baby in their family and how they celebrated the birth). This can be a helpful discussion topic prior to watching the video, as it allows students to familiarise themselves with their own experiences that they can later use to comprehend new information they receive (Gilbert & Hoepper, 2014, p. 69). In terms of extending ideas about the event of birth, the website suggests several research activities students can complete individually (e.g. asking students to discover how their birth was celebrated by their parents – this could form a potential assessment in the form of an oral report or written story about the celebration of their own birth, embracing fundamental research skills). Interestingly, one suggested activity can be adapted as a numeracy strategy. The website suggests asking children to point out birthdays on calendars, which could lead to an examination of the different months of the year, fulfilling a Stage 1 mathematics outcome (MA1-13MG in Board of Studies, 2012, p. 104).

 

The video could also provide the impetus for a discussion on growth and change in a lifetime. By examining the event of birth, children could then move on to a discussion of how much they have grown since they themselves were a baby. Browett and Ashman (2010) suggest having the children bring in photos of themselves in various stages of their life and using them as a springboard for a discussion of how and why changes occur (p. 69). A potential assessment could also involve having the students write a poem or story about their life so far, Browett and Ashman suggesting the format, “When I was 1 I…”, “When I was 2 I…”, etc. (Browett & Ashman, 2010, p. 69). This encourages Stage 1 students to begin thinking about the changes that occur during a lifetime, and how different events in their lives were acknowledged and celebrated.

 

References

 

Board of Studies (2007). Human society and its environment syllabus K-6. Sydney: Board of Studies NSW.

 

Board of Studies (2012). Mathematics K-6 syllabus. Sydney: Board of Studies NSW.

 

Browett, J. & Ashman, G. (2010). Thinking globally: Global perspectives in the early years classroom. Carlton South: Education Services Australia.

 

Gilbert, G. & Hoepper, B. (Eds.). (2014). Teaching humanities and social sciences. South Melbourne: Cengage Learning Australia.

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