Top games Essay
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Nearly all the children could do the above I therefore suggest that the game is appropriate for the age range I planned it for. Throughout this observation the children have gained developing co-ordination and control over the cards. They have used fine motor skills to lift a turn over the cards, for the first few times the children turned over the cards they had a little difficulty all of the children discovered however that if they slide the card to the edge of the table it was easier to pick up.
They have also been learning about sharing and turn taking and how everyone has to have fair turns and not to hurry them along. They have been thinking about ordinal numbers (first second etc) and what number comes next, and also through my open-ended questions, about lengths and sizes of the lines. B F Skinner’s theory of positive and negative reinforcement also fits in here. If a child gets a number and puts it in the correct order, they may be praised, told well done.
There actions have been reinforced (positive reinforcement).
On the other hand a child may not come first the first time they play the game, they may not like this feeling which would inspire them to really try the next time, although if they do not come first again the may take a disliking to the game. I was fully prepared for the activity as all I needed was the game cards, I didn’t need any additional resources. I discussed with my placement supervisor the suitability of the game and whether she thought it to be age and stage appropriate to these children.
I was mostly completely planned and ready for this activity although it would have been helpful if I could have more time, there was enough time to play quite a few games, but not all the children in the class got a chance to play and not also was that unfair to some of the children I could have benefited from seeing the whole class dealing with the game to support my evaluation more. As I have said the number of children in the group was correct it was easy to manage the situation.
I think that I gave clear instructions although it may have made more sense to the children if I had set down some firm ground rules at the start. Again the only thing that did not go to plan was the amount of time I had allocated for the game. The resources I made was suitable for its purpose it lasted quite well and was quite durable as they were backed onto card I think in future I would laminate the cards so they were more durable. It did help the children to learn, but I think it would have been more helpful to them if the numbers were higher as most of the children already knew their numbers one to five quite well.
I could also have made different versions of the game such as, instead of trains I could do flowers or animals depending on what the subject they were focusing on at the time was. Mind map-China-I think that including the whole class was suitable because the children all gained feedback off each other. Although it was quite difficult to tell how many of the children could count the suggestions as they all counted at the same time, some of the children could have been following what everyone else was saying.
When the children were asked (separately) “how many suggestions to make twenty? ” they took a little longer than I had expected to work it out but got it right in the end. Some of the children had a little prompting as how to work it out. As the suggestion about Chinese writing came up a lot I wasn’t sure if the children were copying the first child who suggested it or whether they were going to suggest it in the first place. Tassoni and Beith (2002 p 400) state that between the ages of four and six years a child should normally be:
‘Showing more understanding and using reason based on their experiences’ ? ‘Starting to use and understand symbols – e. g. reading and writing’ Again nearly all the children could do the above I suggest therefore that this activity is appropriate for the age and stage of these children. The children have been learning in the area of knowledge and understanding of the world they have been thinking of past events that they could link with the subject of China (e. g. I had a Chinese last night).
The children have expanded in their knowledge of listening, not interrupting and waiting to be asked before speaking. They have also learnt a bit about how to discuss with people. They have also been learning about mathematics by counting how many suggestions are on the board and calculating ‘how many more… ‘ Again with this activity I can see where B F Skinner’s theory fits in. in a similar way to the first activity – if a child comes up with good suggestions they will get a well done.
This will encourage them to think deeper to think of another suggestion to get the same praise (positive reinforcement). B F Skinner also says that by ignoring certain behaviour it may disappear which could be done with the children that interrupt. Tassoni and Beith (2992 p 223) state that ‘adults need to extend children’s vocabulary and help them to use language as a way of thinking, open questions can be used when working with children.
This means asking questions where children have to give more than one worded answers’ during my activity I believe I covered this as I asked a few open ended and the children responded well. ‘Children also need to learn the skills of listening and this means that we must be good role models for them by listening to them’ although the children were good at listening I still believe that I acted as a good role model to them by listening to all of the suggestions and not being dismissive.
I wasn’t prepared for the amount of suggestions that the children gave it may have been helpful if I had a spare piece of paper for such circumstances. I had discussed with my placement supervisor the suitability of this activity I discussed whether it was age and stage appropriate and whether it was stimulating enough for the children to sit there for a while and pay attention. I think that the time I had allocated for this activity was appropriate; the times were roughly similar when the children started to run out of suggestions and when we had to start the next activity.
The activity was a success there was good feedback later on throughout the day and the children were also asking to have other people suggestions explained to them (showing they were interested in the subject). I had extra support from my supervisor to manage all of the children as it was a class of twenty-eight so it was managed quite well. I gave clear instructions about what we were doing but not about how they had to sit or that they had to wait to be asked. I think that it would have been beneficial to explain this before the activity was started to set down the ground rules.
Other than this all went to plan with the activity. Recommendations The train game – when I asked the children the questions I often got one-word answers, in order to help them expand on the subject more, the adult in the situations asking more open-ended questions about the subject could do this. During the game I had two children with the same favourite colour I dealt with this by playing two games, it may have been easier to ask the children to swap in the middle of the game or to not let the children choose at all I could just deal the cards to them.
I could also for future games keep the colours the same (starting cards one colour, number one cards another colour etc). In order for the children to progress, I could make other cards numbered up to ten, if this proved to difficult because of the amount of cards on the table they could be separated into two piles one to five and six to ten. I could also play the game backwards if they had managed it the original way well.
I could make the cards colour co-ordinated e. g. either they have to get the whole set of one colour to win or that the aim is to make a pattern. The best way I think to extend this activity would be turning it into a quiz – each child is asked a maths question, if they get the question right they can turn over a card if they get it wrong they will wait until their next turn. In this activity whatever the version an adult would need to be present to make sure the game is being carried out in the way planned, that the children are all taking turns and that the children are being sensible with the cards.