Suggestion for introduction
We create a motivating framework for the children.
For example, we can say: “Today, we will make an exact copy of (for example 2 or 3) secret figures in boxes. The rule is that we can go back and forth to look at the figures but we cannot touch them. It is not a competition and we can help each other. When we have copies of all the secret figures, we are done. Maybe they have something in common?”
The activity can be adapted to the framework of one lesson and varied according to the time available and the children’s prerequisites.
We use small Lego sets that we are familiar with, or wooden blocks, colored cubes, magnetic tiles, paper, or something else. Before the activity we build, for instance four secret figures. The materials for the secret figures and the copies we make should have the same bricks.
During the activity
During the play session, the children encounter challenges and successes, where we can stop and help spot what is difficult or what is going well. We can do this in several ways:
When we get the opportunity to reflect together with the children on what challenges or discoveries arise along the way, we can use one or more reflection routines. It could be, for example, a learning metaphor with a social strategy that we practice, an emoji that describes the feeling we have right now, or a rating of how well we think the building is going. In this way, a reflection routine can help to show and put into words the experiences that the children have during the play session.
We can ask facilitating questions to the children along the way, as they naturally arise in the building process. In this way, we facilitate the play session so that we continue the play and at the same time learn something from it. For example:
- I see that you have stopped building. I wonder how we can continue from here?
- I see that you have encountered a challenge. Should we try to solve it together?
- Try to notice what you are doing right now. Do you think this is a collaborative strategy?
Show and Tell
Finally, in the play session, we give a Show and Tell of our construction, so that we have the opportunity to share our experiences, reflections, and feelings about the construction process.
First, we talk about our model and the process of building it. During the Show and Tell, we can use reflection routines and reflective questions to support the discoveries that have been made. For example:
- What went well?
- What was difficult?
- Is there anything that you want to do differently the next time we build hidden figures?