A house filled with invitations to learn

22 April, 2019

I always wanted a house designed for children. A place where the small details would allow my minis to flourish, to learn, to develop their imagination and their creativity. A home where the atmosphere would be soft and where everyone would develop at their own pace according to their personality, their tastes. So I slowly put things in place here and there to create this space that has become ours. With my teacher magnifier, I realized that some choices were purely emotional or aesthetic (it's Pinterest's fault!), While others were more relevant to the development and learning of our children. I therefore share with you some key elements which are in fact invitations to learn. Invitations that make my home a place that stimulates the child, without stunning him. A house that leaves plenty of room for imagination, creativity and discovery ... Welcome to our home! Level 1 (We start with the easiest!)  A great way to get your kids excited is to get them to love reading. Personally, all the children I know, whose parents are teachers, have a very full library at home! Professional deformation, you have to believe! I am no exception! My children have many, many books! However, here, the key element is not the quantity, but the variety… There are children's albums, novels, comics, albums without text, documentaries, cookbooks, Seek and find, tales and legends, ABCs, etc. In short, by putting our children in contact with different types of books, we allow them to use and appreciate different structures. Also have books for you. With children, you have to be a model. A child who sees his parent reading (even if it is the newspaper), will register that the act of reading is important. It will tend to reproduce the model. However, I believe that reading on your tablet or phone does not count! Not with young children anyway! With us, there is a (very great) passion for dinosaurs, dragons and animals. So we have a large collection of books and albums on these subjects. Most of our possessions are used, but children don't care. It also hurts my heart less when my toddlers are too soft on books. We also have a crush on the works of Élise Gravel and Mélanie Watts (Frisson the squirrel, Chester the cat). My minis discover at the same time also the fantastic universes of Harry Potter and Beatrix Potter! The important thing is the variety! *** Books can be borrowed from the library. Personally, my 2 year old mini has access to our books, but it is not gentle enough for those borrowed from the library. It depends on your reality. Books can also be used. There is no need to spend large sums in bookstores. Level 2: We « loose loose »  with invitations!  First of all, what is an invitation? " An invitation to  "Comes from english “Invitation to…  " It consists of putting in place equipment that the child will use and manipulate to do the action to which he is invited. There are invitations to write, create, count ... I give you some ideas for invitations that could easily be offered at home. Invitations to create:
  1. A bin filled with cardboard scraps, glue, scissors, plastic eyes, empty toilet paper rolls and suggest that the child make something (monster, animal, insect, etc.).
  2. A bin filled with pieces of wood, leaves, pine cones, pebbles and you offer him to make a model, a mask, a crown, etc.
  3. Cardboard boxes (cereal boxes, crackers, soft bars) scissors, paint and brushes. Invite the child to create a thematic decoration (Christmas, Halloween, Easter, etc.).
 The idea is to come up with the idea (a theme) and let the child go. You will be surprised with the result! Invitations to write:
  1. A bin with letter stamps. The child can use it to write tag words, names of family members, etc. The child could make a drawing and write what it is with the stamps.
  2. A bag with letters (on pieces of paper, necklace beads, Scrabble). Suggest that the child grab one and have him or her hunt for the words that start with that letter in the house. If your child is still small, it could be to choose a sound (ex: ch, on, r, p) and to find in the house words having this sound.
  3. A bag of flyers, scissors, glue. Invite the child to cut out letters or words to form a message.
 * Little tip: "invitations to write" are very similar to the workshops / station / writing centers used in preschool or lower primary. If you do a little research on the Internet (ex: Pinterest), you will easily find inspiration! Invitations to count:  I will be short for this type of invitation. Geneviève de la Récréation has already done a nice article to present the content of her counting station. If you consult the link and you will have a concrete and well-developed example under the theme of autumn. Geneviève's station only targets the count, however the child can also be asked to manipulate to do mathematical operations (addition, subtraction, multiplication, division). It is also possible to work on the beginning of fractions with children. ** I suggest taking a bin, but it's only for the practicality of it! When it's over, we put the bin away! But take what you have on hand! Burst suggestions  Here are a few invitations that are easy to set up and always win with children:
  • Dry erase whiteboards
  • Blackboards
  • Plasticine
  • Puppets, figurines, (to develop the imagination)
   With us, there are many things that are set up for children, but often we improvise. We use dry beans, noodles, pebbles to count. We take out the sugar or the flour to trace letters or words. Take what you have on hand and be imaginative! An invitation is not that complicated! I want to know! In your home, what forms do your invitations come in?