09 February 2011

Class Kits Inspire!

I believe that one of the most important steps in teaching a class is putting together a well-thought-out kit.

Although it can be time-consuming, I really don't mind putting together class materials because I believe that a good kit (together with a good set of instructions!) makes it easy for students to put together a project, either in class or at home.

There is also something about assembling kits that inspires creativity, sort of like a new box of crayons. All the "raw" ingredients are there, just waiting to be put together into a cohesive project! I get this feeling every time I go to a workshop or put together kits for one of my own classes.

If you've ever watched HGTV's "Divine Design", you might know what I mean. As designer Candice Olson works on her plans for a client's room, she piles all the selected materials in a wire basket -- fabric, wood samples, metal finishes, etc. All the ingredients for the completed room are there -- just waiting to be incorporated into the design. I love the look of materials in that basket!

I'm obviously no Candice Olson :) but I think the combination of colors, patterns, and textures in a packaged kit can have the same inspiring effect!


Kristina said...

I love Candice Olson and I just bought one of her design books. That looks like a very cute kit!

Jill/Twipply Skwood said...

Janet! I have to tell you something! I was so impressed by the bell ringing story that I not only told it to my entire family, but while we were eating snack one day, I told it to my class.

One of our literacy activities is that the children tell us stories, which we transcribe for them. They then choose who will act in their story and they dramatize it in front of the class.

Today, one of the little boys told the story of Lily and Tinsel! I took pictures of them on "stage" (our circle time carpet). He assigned a little girl to play you, and a girl to play Lily a a boy to play Tinsel and directed Lily to ring the bell. They did the entire thing! The kids in the audience really enjoyed it. I wish I had some way of showing you the pictures.

Jill/Twipply Skwood said...

Oh and that same little boy has also told me an identical story, except that the cats in his story were named bell and ribbon! I didn't even tell it to them as any big thing either, it was just that one kid was done with snack and the others weren't, so I just sort of sat there & told it to him to keep him occupied while the others finished up.

Janet said...

Kristina -- Me, too! She needs to come to my house. I could keep her busy for a long, long time!

Jill -- That is so awesome! I cannot even believe it! What a sweet story and I am honored that you shared it with your class! You made my day! :)

Jill/Twipply Skwood said...

I'm so glad you liked it Janet! It was so neat to watch!