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I'm at a pre-school and our topic for September is colours...

We tend to pick a colour or group of colours a week. This time we are focusing on yellow and orange and using the book Handa's Surprise as a focus. We also use the sea and sky to focus on blues, money for metallic colours, night and day for black and white and Autumn for brown.. er forgotten green - maybe harvest??

 

LOL I'm not much help am I!!

 

The obvious two are The Rainbow Fish and Elmer books I guess.

 

You could use Noah's Ark as the end was the first rainbow...

 

Not really sure what kind of ideas you want - do you want songs, creative, science?

If you can get hold of some blotting paper, put a blob of black felt-tip in the middle then drop some water on it. As the water spreads, it takes the pen and separates it out into the colours as it goes. You will need to experiment yourself first!

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When we were doing colour and light last year (and the week OFSTED were in!) I did 'Brown Bear Brown Bear What do you See?' as my big book. The kids loved it and I have some great pics of the animals in the story to use for sequencing. It's also good because of the repetitive language.

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I know I am opening myself up to trouble, but why do you need to do a topic on colours? Surely it should be part of your everyday language and fit into all your planning? What about the children that start the term after you have covered shapes, colours and numbers - is that it for the rest of the year?

I'm not passing judgement as, believe me, I have been there and done it for years, but I have come to realise that using experiences as topics that are relevant to the children i.e. transport, shops, people who help us, food etc are much more relevant and can incorporate all manner of maths and literacy objectives.

People have suggested books that contain colour themes, so why not have a focus book, like Brown Bear and by all means, use colour as the main thread, but also bring in animals, their habitats, adapt the home corner into a den etc. You can have an animal a day and put different coloured objects into the water, sand, colour playdoh if you really want to focus on colours, but as a stand alone topic there are far more interesting things to do and explore as a 3 year old!

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  • 3 weeks later...
I know I am opening myself up to trouble, but why do you need to do a topic on colours?  Surely it should be part of your everyday language and fit into all your planning?  What about the children that start the term after you have covered shapes, colours and numbers - is that it for the rest of the year?

I'm not passing judgement as, believe me, I have been there and done it for years, but I have come to realise that using experiences as topics that are relevant to the children i.e. transport, shops, people who help us, food etc are much more relevant and can incorporate all manner of maths and literacy objectives.

People have suggested books that contain colour themes, so why not have a focus book, like Brown Bear and by all means, use colour as the main thread, but also bring in animals, their habitats, adapt the home corner into a den etc.  You can have an animal a day and put different coloured objects into the water, sand, colour playdoh if you really want to focus on colours, but as a stand alone topic there are far more interesting things to do and explore as a 3 year old!

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I agree, and I hope others take your comments in the constructive way they were meant.

Learning opportunities should be holistic and not constrained to a small aspect of the curriculum, because children don't learn in compartmentalized ways. They learn by having opportunities to explore what is interesting and more importantly what is relevant to them at any given time. I think this is also true of "topics" or subjects such as alphabet and counting, these need to be presented in everyday contexts and not through stand alone focused teaching.

 

Peggy

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Hi basilbrush,

 

We work with the sub-topic of Colours in January, within the main topic of "Bears". We use "Brown Bear Brown Bear, What Do You See?". We also create our own class version of this book and it starts like "Snowman Snowman, What Do You See?" I got the idea from the internet. There I take the opportunity to talk about about winter and hibernation. You can take the advantage of using colours to recount things they used or liked to do during their winter holiday. Attached is a sample of their answers (In winter I will... ).

 

Class_version_of_Bear_Bear.doc

clrweb2a.pdf

ColourLesson.pdf

Colours.doc

colours1daybydayintheweek.pdf

Display_title.doc

m_learning_all_my_colours.doc

In_winter_I_will.doc

The_Colour_Song.doc

Xylophone_bars.doc

 

Although we leave this for January, we learn about colours through out the rest of the topics during the 1st term. This way it becomes a more 'formal' review for those who have arrived later in the 1st term.

 

Have fun :D !

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Hello.

I don't know if any one has mentioned this already but on the plan2play website there is a whole six week planning package on colours. You have to pay £10 but it is definitley money well spent! I have been using it for my planning in september. It will save you alot of time. Hope that helps. Jill :D www.plan2play.co.uk

does anyone have any good ideas for a topic on colours....  i'd love to hear your ideas..

 

cheers

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Hi there Bonny and Jill, welcome on board.

 

I came across this lovely book last year called 'what colour is love?' sorry dont know the authors, but we use it early in the year when the children are still new to us and they love it, as do we!

 

Would make a nice addition to your book list for this topic.

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We also have a topic on Colour, and I'm inclined to agree with Running Bunny that we shouldn't necessarily take each colour as literal. With this in mind I was planning green (Obviously I haven't given this topic much thought yet!) and thought I would focus on being green: recycling, saving water/energy etc. This may seem potentially over the heads of 3 year olds, but I'm going to stick my neck out and say that the earlier we encourage best ecological practice, the better! I don't see why we shouldn't raise ecological awareness in our youngest children; I for one will simply differentiate the related activities to suit the age I work with.

 

(I'll just step down off my soap box now!!)

 

Depending on when you are doing Colour, browns and oranges could take a side-step in to an Autumn theme.

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Not at all chocolate girl, we always talk about green issues with our children.

 

One of my jobs next year is to 'manage' transition from FS to KS1. when I talked to the chidlren about how they found year one, one of them said (amongst other thngs) ...'and there's no recycling box!!!'

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Here are a couple of other colour poems to add to your planning -

 

I know an man called Mr Red

He wears saucepans on his head.

I know a man called Mr Black

He keeps peanuts in a sack

I know a man called Mr Pink

He fell head first into the sink.

I know a man called Mr Blue

He keeps white mice in his shoe.

I know a man called Mr Brown

He rides tigers into town.

I know a man called Mr Green

He's the nicest man I've ever seen.

 

 

Stick colour dots on each nail, starting with thumb, red, blue, yellow, white,green.

Begin with hand held up, palm away from your face, As the rhyme is said bend finger away from yourself to make it disappear.

 

Red - blue - yellow - white and green

(wiggle each one as the colour is said)

All my fingers are alive (Continue wiggling)

But Mr Red, went to bed

Mr Blue, went there too

Now I've only three.

Mr Yellow, said hello

Mr White, had a fright

Now I've only one

Mr Green, couldn't be seen

Now there's none at all!!

 

Sue J

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I love the fingernail colours idea! I shall definitely teach the children that rhyme in September!

 

Thanks Sue J

 

Maz

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Guest LucyQ

I'm sorry but I have to agree with the others about topics. I really don't like them.

 

We have stopped having topics and just have seasonal activities - the things you do every year ie seasons as they go by, festivals, local events etc.

 

Then we use our knowledge of what the children are in to, (lots of observations and discussions with children and staff) on a day by day basis and hey presto - happy, engaged, learning through play children.

 

They don't have to look at green and things that are green for a week because an adult (very well intentioned, I know) says thats what they are doing.

 

An example might be something very simple ie I noticed a child was wrapping paper around different objects with lots of sellotape. The next session I took in some old gift wrapping paper and fabric (lots of different textures, colour etc) and put them out for the children to use as they wanted. Some spent ages trying to cover themselves with the paper/fabric, others needed a little help cutting smaller pieces to cover the animals in the small world area and the child who I had initially noticed spent ages wrapping and wrapping - lots on concentration going on by all.

 

I know we all do this kind of thing anyway and it takes a while to get used to NO TOPIC planning (if there is such a thing!) but it has now given me more time to think and plan the environment and resourses needed to create a truly inspiring, independant place of learning through play rather than a adult lead, topic based environment. Also, I don't have a topic based life/home - I learn about things as and when they interest ME that way I learn more deeply.

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Well put LucyQ. .. and I think that is exactly the approach that Ofsted are going to be looking for in their new framework under the 'what is it like for a child here?'

 

Observing the children and picking up on their cues as to how they want to learn, rather than assuming that all children want to learn about 'a particular topic' and even that they can learn at the same pace as others, is the way forward.

 

Children will still meet the stepping stones and ELGs but will have much more fun doing it (and I'm sure the staff will enjoy it more too!)

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What is done in some schools is that at the beginning of the year the teacher/s ask the children what topics they would like to learn about. This makes it more personalised. There are some themes that the children love to do every single year, like those related to animals. There are also themes that are seasonal. The thing is not to stick on to a topic if the children are really not interested in it. They also give suggestions of things they would like to do (e.g. cooking).

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I am really interested in intoducing this in our pre-school and I am in process of re writing the 2 year plan basing them on elg and areas of learning rather then themes however it is the medium and the short term I cant quite get my head round.for instance if the children began to play weddings in the home corner you would then plan to do weddings the next week?in theory this is everything I want for our pre-school but how and who do you get the plans accross to all your staff ?(we have 9 most part-timers)so they can prepare any craft activitie/freizes/stories/games etc I spend most of my life there as it is does it mean I would have to prepare each week fully for the next week ?(at mo this is done in the medium term plans and then i fine tune them week by week,I am so excited about this but have to sound convincing for my staff who have been there longer then i and have always done it one way!also to work to its ful effect you would have to be on the ball weddings for a few days then it only takes one child to iniate something else and its changed again hasnt it?sorry for waffling hope it makes sense please help me make this such important step! :o

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Just a thought.....

 

The topic is "Colours", participants in the topic have learnt some valuable ideas.......leading from this topic, some participants have shown a need to learn about another topic "spontaneous planning" ................

 

unfortunately their needs will not be fully met because only a limited number of "teachers" know their needs, because the "Topic" heading is still portrayed as "colours" and therefore any new input will be limited......

 

 

in other words, using "Topics" can blinker some peoples knowledge of what learning needs/interests there are from the group of learners.

 

Is this not evidence that learning cannot be compartmentalised into topics unless we are all very very observant of all the different tangents that the learners WILL move onto.

 

Wider communication is therefore required for the last four participants valid comments and queries to be exploited to their full potential.

 

does this all make sense to you or have I waffled too much? :o

 

Peggy

 

p.s. and of course unless you are interested in the topic "colours" or you are very observant you won't read my post xD

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