In preparation for my visit to Italy, I have been introducing it to the children all week. At first I brought in a piece of luggage I plan to use. I asked the children what it was and could be used for. After discussing the possibility of it being a backpack, we came to the conclusion it was “luggage.” They spent the day taking turns looking inside, opening and closing it, and rolling it around. I asked the children what I should pack with me. They came up with a list:
- toothbrushes and toothpaste
- toys (a baby)
- clothes (pants, shirts, and a t-shirt in case it is the hottest day in the world)
- sunscreen so I don't get burned
- goggles for the beach
- 2 dinosaurs
- a swimsuit
- a backpack
- tennis shoes
- a hot dog
- a lunch box
Today I introduced a map of the town I am visiting (Reggio Emilia) that was made by children who live there. We tried to guess what was in the town and places where I could go. The children took magnifying glasses to explore and then drew maps of their own.
"This is the Italy"
Here are some of our drawings.
|"Here is the Italy house"|
|"A train and a school for Ms. Kurtjian"|
|"For Ms. Kurtjian to find her way around Italy"|
|"It's all bridges! Ms. Kurtjian has to go this way all through the town."|
|"This is New York and this is the bridge to get across the river."|
It can be hard to explain the concept of traveling far away, but luckily a lot of the children have spent time doing it already. Most of the children know about hotels and airplanes. Seeing a map made by children inspired our children to study and create one of their own. The lower right part of the map was a school and playground, which got the children thinking of comparing us to others far away. What kind of school do they have? What kinds of materials do they work with? What do you think this part is on their playground? The children agreed with me that I need to take pictures and see what the Italian children play with.
I hope that I will be able to communicate everything we have talked about while I am in Italy. I know when I get back I plan on describing everything as much as I can to them by making books, sharing photographs, and watching video.