As pre-primary and primary teachers we strongly believe that this period is a great time for children to encourage creativity, thinking outside the box and exploring. Discovering the world is then possible through various channels – in a multisensual way, on the basis of environmental and social context, in contact with nature and technology, but also within the inspiration of literature.
Through “Read the World” project our students had a chance to discover their real world (of nature, surroundings) and build their knowledge and social skills on the inspiration of “Gruffalo” book, written by Julia Donaldson.
The project concept was built on the use of Gruffalo story for that to explore the World of People and Nature, building a close relation to this world and what was so much important –creating a space for dialogue and collaboration between the participating children. The plot of the book was the basis for project schedule, which gave us many opportunities to explore, discuss and work together on such topics as: “Meet gruffalo”, “Creatures around”, “Gruffalo in our landscapes”, “Gruffalo game”, or “Gruffalo appears”. Within each topic children and teachers had a chance to use different ICT tools and application, according to its common or individual way of presenting and sharing.
Each topic was discussed between teachers during skype meetings every month, and then organised by project teams with a wide range of freedom in presenting its results or creating additional activities (made on a basis of children initiative and ideas).
Collaboration or cooperation between teachers and students was one of the main purposes for the project and its tasks. If only that was possible and decided – project activities were organized as a common work (where each team contribution was inevitable to gain final result), arranged alternately (as a task going from first to the last group) or as a task made by one of the team for other partners. Indeed, most of results are finally common, containing recordings, drawings, game, story, Gruffalo`s body constructions, voting results.
- building the knowledge about the cultural and natural treasures of the world
- gaining and developing language competences (expanding vocabulary, to widen speech & communication skills, ability of listening and understanding the meaning and context),
- forming an intellectual abilities in creative thinking, forming links between the world of the book with the stories of our world)
- supporting the children curiosity, self-confidence and awareness of their abilities
- arousing students` initiative and independence
- gaining the ability of working in teams (among students in classroom teams and international teams, but also among parents and teachers)
- providing the joy and satisfaction with the result of oneself work
- using ICT tools and educational platform by children within the project
- gaining the first experience of using foreign language and understanding its importance for life.
Age of participants: 3-8
Time of duration: September 2014- June 2015
Languages: English (language of project and communication),
English, Spanish, Icelandic, Polish, Slovenian, French (language of students)
Range of Curriculums: Literature (Vocabulary, Speech, Listening and understanding the meaning and context, Word formation, Story Telling, Communication), Social education (Democracy, Voting, Team working, Cooperation, Regionalism, European identity), Intellectual functions (including remembering, observation skills, developing creativity and imagination), Environment, Maths, Art and Technology (including Music, Art, Theatre and ICT), Languages, Special pedagogy, Outdoor education
Activities accomplished within the project:
of a stage
(category on the blog)
+ subpages on the blog
|September 2014||building the project team||§ Setting up partnership of schools (Iceland, Spain, Poland and Slovenia) through eTwinning platform;
§ Planning the idea of the project, its possible range and a title; discussing the space for presenting project outcomes, form of communication between teachers as well as the way of students` collaboration.
§ “Read the world” registration on eTwinning platform by founders. Adding partners from other countries – including France. Creating project teams among colleagues in project schools
§ Creating project blog (www.kidsreadtheworld.wordpress.com); invitation to access for posting on the blog
§ Setting up the partnership
§ Registration of a project
§ Creating project blog
|October/ November 2014||MEET GRUFFALO||§ Reading “Gruffalo” story.
Listening of children ideas for project activities in the accompany with story characters;
§ Presentation of project teams – films and recordings combining children portraits with their drawings. Creating gallery of little Gruffalos – on the basis of child portraits;
§ Playing memory game (memorizing children names and faces);
§ Recording the description of Gruffalo monster in project languages (on VoiceThread);
|§ A set of ideas for project activities to be discussed and set by teachers
§ Presentations of portraits and Gruffalo drawings (Windows Movie Maker, Blabberize)
§ Memory games
§ Recording on Gruffalo description (VoiceThread)
|CREATURES AROUND||§ Educing the characters of the story and illustrating them by drawing with crayons;
§ Selection of drawings (interior voting on groups and international through online voting). Use of different facilities (interactive whiteboard, computer, smartphone, tablet);
§ Statement of voting results. Publishing the gallery of chosen drawings.
§ Recording of animals` names in project languages (Voicethread with drawings)
§ Taking pictures of animals which can be met in the closest area. Creating puzzles with photographs, playing puzzles, recognizing species.
§ Detective games – searching for animals tracks in the closest environment, recognizing species, taking pictures of tracks for partners (in mud, in snow), creating tracks in plasticine or salt dough;
§ “Who`s that?” photo guessing – on the basis of children`s disguise on Gruffalo characters
§ “Gruffalo Theatre. Part 1.” – a theatre for grandparents (in Polish kindergarten).
§ Gallery of drawings and voting survey;
§ Gallery of chosen drawings
§ VoiceThread dictionary with animals (story characters) in languages
§ Set of puzzles with animal photos (Jigsaw planet)
§ Blog reports on detective games, photos of tracks;
§ Galery of photos
§ Przedstawienie „Gruffalo” dla babć i dziadków
|December 2014||GRUFFALO APPEARS||§ Building Gruffalo model from materials chosen by children in school teams
(photo reports on the process of creation);
§ Creating menu for Gruffalo restaurant (strange ideas, formation of combining words) – drawing meals or creating them from plasticine/salt dough;
§ Sending parts of Gruffalo body and Gruffalo restaurant menus to partner schools with Christmas parcels;
§ Rebuilding Gruffalo bodies with parts sent in parcels, photo reports on the blog.
§ Gruffalo bodies (national and international)
§ Gruffalo menus
§ Christmas parcels, reports on parcels` opening
IN OUR LANDSCAPES
|§ Taking pictures of landscapes near school
or in the characteristic place in a town/village;
§ Drawing characters on the pictures of landscapes (collages or directly on the photograph, with crayons or Paint). Presentations of landscapes on the blog;
§ Creating common drawings of Gruffalo`s dream land (La La Land) – alternately by project teams
|· Photo galery of landscapes;
· Collages of animals in landscapes;
§ La La Land Drawing(Paint)
|February/ March 2015||GRUFFALO GAME||§ Building “Gruffalo game” with rules created by children and drawings showing social and environmental situation on story plot;
§ Playing “Gruffalo game” indoor and outdoor school in a way chosen by students;
§ Creating symbolic version of a book on the idea of “Key to Learning – Literature” method – modeling the story, characters` replacement into symbols, iconic representatives of scenes. (made by Polish team for other partners)
§ Educational and multisensual games (Maths, Logic, Movement) inspired by story characters.
|§ Math game „Gruffalo game” with its legend/game rules
§ A set of symbolic scenes to work on the plot of the story
§ Gallery of pictures from games (on decision of project groups and invention)
|April/June 2015||GRUFFALO STORY
|§ Creating new story about Gruffalo adventures (alternately by project teams). Using five silly items hited on and previously drawn by last group.
§ Publishing the„New adventures of the Gruffalo across Europe” e-book in English and national language versions.
§ “Gruffalo postcards” – drawings on the idea of Gruffalo holidays postcards/pictures. Made in techniques chosen by children.
|§ Task giving posts with five silly elements created for alternate team to use in the story chapter;
§ „New adventures..” e-book (lifebooklet.com)
§ Posts with Gruffalo postcards
|June 2015||EVALUATION||§ Display, Assembly or Theatre for parents/communities
(for. ex. a “Gruffalo theatre” for Parents Day or for kindergarten children in Poland; performance and song in Iceland);
§ Project evaluation “My favourite Gruffalo adventure” in drawings or recordings;
§ Summary and ending a project, receiving project certificates for children;
§ Surveys for parents and teachers within the project work and its outcomes
§ Analysis, dissemination of the project results
§ Applications for National Quality Labels
|§ Photo galery on the blog, recording of the „Gruffalo Theatre”
§ Video evaluation with children comments
§ Results of surveys for parents and teachers
- Project blog (www.ourtalkingpictures.wordpress.com) presenting project tasks and results on all its stages: photo galleries; children drawings and recordings; accounts from outdoor games and explorations, picture dictionary of story animals, e-book with the new story of Gruffalo in five languages, games, interactive puzzles, Gruffalo models educational materials and much more…
- Experience of learning and fun through the contact with book and nature (Literature and World as inspiration for education and adventure).
- Gaining knowledge of their closest context and culture.
- Development of student social skills (working in pairs, team, respect for others and their ideas, self-confidence, taking responsibilities for actions, awareness of their skills and strong sides)
- Gaining positive experience from interaction between colleagues from other European countries and creating positive attitude towards international contacts in future
- Gaining experience and basic skills in use of simple ICT tools
- Strong and creative partnership between teachers working in a project (and extending collaboration internationally to France and Slovenia)
- Significant increase of technical skills
- Development in planning educational sessions in nature (outdoor education approach);
- Advancement of democracy in teaching and learning through project work (Regio Emilia approach)
ICT tools used within the project:
Apps and web tools:
WordPress blog, Paint, Windows Movie Maker, Memory match, Voicethread, Jigsaw puzzle, Smilebox, Padlet, Lifebooklet, Vimeo, Learning Apps, Blabberize, Doodle, Skype,
Equipment: interactive whiteboard, smartphone, digital camera, camera, tablet,