Term 3 Week 10 – Questions and Father’s Day

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Apologies – forgot to post this blog last weekend!

Our work is nearing an end so during topic work we spoke about how many questions we have posed since the beginning of the year.  We pointed out that it is very good to ask questions because that shows we are interested and inquisitive.

However there are rules to follow when asking questions.

  • The questions have to match the topic at hand. If we are talking and asking questions about food we cannot pose questions like, “Where are we going abroad this summer?”
  • Not all questions can be answered.
  • We have to wait for our turn to ask a question not ask over someone else. That would be rude.

When we grow older we can look up answers in books and on the computer too.  These media contain endless answers to many questions.  Answers might be around us, we just need to keep our eyes and ears open.

However I mentioned that at this point in their lives they ask questions to their teachers, grandparents, friends, mum and last but not least to their dad.

These are all people who love us very much and are ready to give us a proper answer if they can.  We associated this with Father’s Day.  We said no matter if we live with our dad or not he loves us very much and he is ready to answer the endless amount of questions we might have.  The children watched a sweet story called, A Perfect Father’s Day by Eve Bunting.


They also watched another lovely story called I Love Dad written by Giles Andrej


We explored what special things each and every one of them can do with their dad to show him that they love him.  They mentioned many things such as give him a hug, help him wash the car, play together with toys, go to the beach together or at the park, read a story together,  draw a picture for him, tickle him etc.

We ended our Father’s day and question topic by creating a card which I hope you enjoyed.  The children loved putting it together.

They also created a little memento out of modelling clay with their little finger imprint for you to cherish. (It is stuck on the card and I hope it arrived home in one piece)   🙂

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Term 3 Week 10 – People Who Help Us – Lawyers

As you all know we currently having parents come in to talk to us about various professions and how they help in the community.  In fact this week we had another special visitor to our class.  Josehiry’s mum from Pre-Junior C came over to speak about children’s rights and how as an immigration lawyer she ensures that their rights are protected.

She showed the children that a lawyer is responsible to check that everyone’s rights are respected according to the law.  They therefore help people to work out what might have gone wrong such as when two people are involved in a car crash, when people are arrested by the police for doing something wrong.  A lawyer helps people when they migrate from one country to another or to set up a business.

She introduced the concept that children have rights that need to be respected and protected. These are the right to be safe, to have access to education and health services, to have healthy food and clean water and the right to play.

She used this child friendly clip to help explain the concept to the children. She also hinted without going into much detail that in some countries, not all these rights are protected and some children do not have clothes, homes, clean drinking water or access to health services or schooling.


We then spoke about why people move from one country to another:

  • Some people emigrate because they have found a job in other countries.
  • Others migrate for the experience of living in a different place.
  • People might go to live elsewhere because of health reasons. The climate might be too hot or too cold for them.
  • Some people emigrate because of necessity. The place where they live in is not safe.
  • People might want to live elsewhere so their children’s rights will be better respected.

All this made us aware that it is not easy to leave a country and go to a strange land no matter how better it might be in the long run.  There are new rules and laws to be respected.  Thus it is important welcoming new children to our class should anyone join us in the middle of the year, playing with them and helping them understand the rules and routines of the classroom.

We looked at ways and means of getting from one country to another such as cars, trains, buses and airplanes.  Others might not even have these means of transportation so they move from one place to another on foot.  To do all this we need special travelling equipment such as valid tickets, passports, ID cards and appropriate clothes for the climate we will be living in..

This talk was very well put together in a way that the children at such a tender age can understand and relate to.  It helped them appreciate how lucky they are to have a supporting family both at home and at school.

This talk also helped them understand that they need to be sensitive to the needs and realities of others that they might encounter in their lives.

Last but not least, it is important for the children to understand that they have rights and how lucky they are to live in a country and in families that uphold and respect their rights.

 

 

Term 3 Week 10 – Zoom away Airplanes and Pilots

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We started our week by looking at the profession of a pilot.  The children became aware that pilots have to be responsible people because on board their plane they would be carrying a good number of people.

However they can fly other types of planes which carry food and other goods from one country to another.  Whatever type of airplane they fly there are words which are used for all.

The children got a taste of these words: turbine engines, wings of a plane, the tail of a plane, the nose of a plane, cockpit, luggage compartment, steward, air hostess, airport, departure, landing, runway, hanger, engineer etc.

The children watched two video clips related to this topic.  One is a book called Planes Fly where the children got familiar the language mentioned above.  The other story talks about going on an airplane from a child’s perspective.

Planes Fly –


Caillou Flies on a Plane


The children created their own little airplane out of a clothes peg and two craft sticks which they decorated to their hearts content.  They pretended to be pilots and fly their planes during PE time    🙂

All these planes make a loud sound when the engines are warmed up for takeoff.  They all make a zoom sound.  This led us to the letter associated with this profession z-zooommmm.  More information is found in the literacy section.

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This song accompanied our topic too

 

 

Term 3 Week 9 – People Who Help Us – Doctors and Nurses – X-Rays

One of the topics for this week was doctors and nurses with particular reference to X-Rays.

We spoke about how these special people help us get better when we feel sick.  Two students in class were very proud to mention that their mummy was in fact a doctor and a radiographer (a person who takes X-Rays)   🙂

We spoke about some characteristics that a doctor and a nurse need to have, such as they have to be patient, kind, very attentive to the feelings of their patient, able to work long hours even during the night.

We spoke about the fact that although at times we might be afraid to go to the doctor because he/she might give us an injection these people are our friends and what they do is for our best.  We also spoke about a trick we can use if we are scared of the injection.

  • First of all we look the other side and not at the injection.
  • We can take our favourite toy to the doctor’s and show it how brave we are.
  • We imagine something that we really like for example playing with this favourite toy or eating something yummy.
  • With the other hand we hold on tight to mummy’s or daddy’s hand.
  • In no time the injection is over.

We also spoke about the medicine that the doctor gives us which unfortunately does not have a pleasant taste.

So we came up with another trick – that of pinching the bridge of our noses, open our mouths very wide and gulp down the medicine very hard.

We can always take a glass of water after.  The medicine given to us only makes us better.   These are the video clips we watched:

Story for preschool children about going to the doctor –


Going to the doctor song –


At times we also go to the doctor because we would have broken a bone from falling.  When this happens a special photo of our bone has to be taken to see which part of it is broken.  This is done with an X-Ray machine.

After which they would have a special cast made from plaster placed over the broken bone so that it can heal properly.

The children watched a video clip of a small boy who already had a cast on his arm but needed to go for an x-ray check up to see if he was healing well.

Video Clip – Having an X-Ray –


We had a lovely first hand experience of Jeanmarie’s mummy who came to school to explain about her job.  The children learnt very interesting facts such as

  • Why we have bones
  • Which is the largest bone in our body – (Femur – the thigh bone)
  • The smallest bone is found in our ear
  • When we happen to break a bone it is called a fracture which will heal.

The children saw different X-Rays of the arm, hand, skull, neck, parts of the foot and they tried to guess which part of the body these belonged to.  They also had the opportunity to hold different sized bones in their hands. The children learned what is the appropriate food to take, to have healthy bones:

  • White milk
  • White yoghurt
  • Fish
  • Cheese
  • Green vegetables

Regular exercise helps keep the bones healthy too.

The children coloured in a picture which Ms. Maria brought along for the Pre-Junior classes.  (They brought it home to show it to you).  They also created a craft where they printed their hand onto a black cardboard using white paint and white chalk.  This is found hanging outside our class room door for all of you to see.

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We spoke about the vehicles that the doctors might use for their work.  We mentioned a normal car to go to the clinic or hospital where they work.

The nurse might have to go in an ambulance to the place where a patient needs to be taken care of.

If we need an ambulance we have to call 112.  However I emphasized that we do not do this for nothing.

If someone happens to be sick or fall first we look out for another adult nearby such as dad, mum, granny etc.  If we are alone with that person and we try and touch them but they are not answering or moving and there is no other adult around, it is then that we have to call the ambulance. (Reminded them of the emergency nurse visit we had earlier in the week).

This led us to the other letter of week x-ray.  More detail found in the literacy blog section.

PS – I will only be able to upload Ms. Maria’s visit photos, the children during the visit and the crafts related to this topic when all the GDPR papers are handed in to the IT Office.

 

 

Visit by an Emergency Nurse Worker

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Besides being a short week for the children it was an intense and interesting one because we had two parents coming in to talk to us about their jobs which go hand in hand with the topic we are currently doing – People who help us in our community.

The first visitor of the week was a mum from Ms. Stef’s class who brought along an ambulance to school for all the pre-junior classes to see.  They saw how the stretcher is pulled down from the ambulance.

All those who wanted a go went up on the stretcher.  They even pretended to be emergency nurse workers by trying the special jacket and protective helmet that these professionals wear when they are on duty.

Ms. Ingrid then visited every pre-junior class and gave a simple yet very effective presentation.  She explained that we should all remember a very important number 112.

 

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This is the emergency number we need to call when someone is badly hurt.  (This number is there to call the police or the fire department too.  I had discussed the latter with the kids when the warden came over the previous week).  Under no circumstance should we call 112 for any other reason.

  • We should call 112 only if the injured person is not answering us.
  • Try and seek adult help as well.
  • We should listen very attentively to the questions being asked by the emergency worker, be brave and answer them as best we can.

Ms. Ingrid then gave a demonstration of what should we do when we have minor injuries at home.

  • If we have a nose bleed we have to pinch the bridge of our nose and put our head down.
  • If our hand or leg bleed slightly we should not panic or be scared. We just get a clean dish cloth, towel or tissue and press it on the bleeding part.  Then seek adult help.  It is important to remember not to play with anything pointy or which might break such as glass.
  • We should never touch things which are hot such as a hot kettle or a pot. But if we do so by accident we should put the slightly burned area such as the hand under cold runny water.
  • If we are stung by a jelly fish we ask our relatives for a credit card and scrape lightly or the sting. Then we apply some vinegar on it.

The children were then shown how to apply a bandage as well as how to place an unconscious person in a recovery position.  Always seek adult help after.

 

I have a lot of lovely photos of the children doing hands on activities such as bandaging as well as placing each other in the recovery position.  However I cannot blog them before all the parents and guardians fill in the GDPR email or the equivalent paper some received, to authorise the uploading of the children’s photos on the blog.

 

 

Term 3 Week 8 – People Who Help Us – Part 5 – Wardens

Another group of workers who help us in our everyday life are wardens.

First we took a look at what a warden does for a living – that mainly they are out and about making sure that people obey the rules and educate them where they might be doing wrong.

They see that no vandalism is done on the environment such as smashing cars, writing on walls, people injuring each other. They also give fines (the children called them tickets) if such rules are not obeyed.

We saw the similarities and differences between a warden and a policeman.  Wardens cannot carry any weapons or arrest people, but policeman do.

Like everyone else wardens encounter their difficulties at work such as when people are not nice to them when they correct their bad behavior.

We can recognize wardens and policeman from their smart uniform so when we need help out and about we can ask them.  Last but not least wardens and policeman use motorbikes and cars as their vehicles.

The children watched a story of a warden/policeman who helps children at a school by setting examples.  This is an online version of the story.

Officer Buckle –


The children watched and sang to the rhyme Police officer – Rhymes on Profession –


However the highlight of this topic was when we had a guest over to talk about the important work such people do.  Mr. Muscat Adaya’s dad works as a police warden at the corrective facility.  These are the main points which were discussed in class when he came over.

  • Police officers and wardens wear a smart uniform to distinguish them from other people especially when we need help. Just like us at school they have a summer uniform and a winter one.
  • Some uniforms are green whilst others have a white shirt and a black trousers depending on which work they are in charge of.
  • They also have a special tie which we called the magic tie which comes off very easily so that they won’t hurt if another adult is not obeying the rules.
  • Usually they have a number on their shoulder which distinguishes an officer from another.
  • They also wear a special cap with a special badge which shows the flag of Malta along with the badge of the timeout place where he works.
  • We gave prison the name of the timeout place for adults. We explained that just like children at times need to think about their actions when they misbehave so do adults. Some adults need to go to the timeout place when they misbehave a lot.  We made it very clear that misbehaving for adults does not mean when parents fight and maybe shout at each other.  But when adults steal things which do not belong to them, hurt and injure people on purpose (not when cars crash), when they destroy the environment such as writing on walls and breaking things out and about. We also emphasized that children do not go to this time out place.
  • Policeman wardens learn at a special school and they have teachers just like us. They learn how to defend themselves, how to be strong by doing a lot of special exercises, walking, climbing special walls etc.
  • Some of the officers also have special dogs which help them in their work. These dogs see and smell a lot.
  • They also go out in the community to help people in need.
  • Last but not least he showed us the handcuffs. Some of the children actually had them at home because they play policeman.  The children had a laugh when I asked Mr. Muscat to show us how they are used and I actually wore the handcuffs myself.  We explained that such handcuffs are used when robbers, people who destroy the environment and adults who hit each other very badly are taken to the timeout place.

Here are some photos that were taken in class during the presentation.


Accompanying this topic we had our usual craft.  The children printed traffic lights using the traffic lights colours green, yellow, red.  Photos of this activity can be found under the literacy blog along with other related activity photos.

On behalf of the Pre-Junior team and all the Pre-junior classes a great big thank you goes to Mr. Muscat for his interesting presentation.

 

 

Term 3 Week 8 – People Who Help Us – Part 4 – Vets and Photos

The second part of our topic work sessions for this week was dedicated to another group of community workers who help all those who have pets.

I am referring to the vets.  The children were very enthusiastic about this topic as a good number of them do have pets or love some particular animal so they have experienced going to the vet themselves.

We mentioned that vets are special doctors who really love animals and just like we go to our doctor when we are sick or when we need to take an injection so do our animals.

The story chosen to help the children understand better what a vet does is:

Paula the Vet by Julia Donaldson –


I managed to squeeze in the second story called Caillou – Gilbert Goes to the Vet.


After each story we explored the qualities needed to be a vet such as loving and caring animals, being patient and very careful at all times during work.

Vets have to work long hours even possibly during the night too.  They also use special cars or even an ambulance to transport any ill or injured animal.  This service in Malta is called Ambuserv Animal Rescue Service.  This is how their ambulances looks like:

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Our classroom changed into a pet clinic/hospital where the children role played being a vet.  They cured all sorts of animals from dogs and cats to pigs, lions, bears, dinosaurs and more.

They used small bandages for broken or injured legs and arms, spoons for medicines, craft sticks for thermometers and injections and even little stethoscopes we made in class out of chenille sticks and foam circles to hear the heartbeat of each animal.

Some children preferred to be human doctors so they cured baby toys instead.  Here is a quick snapshot of their role play    🙂

 

These are 2 songs the children enjoyed during this topic –

 

 

 

Term 3 Week 8 – People Who Help Us – Part 3 – Lifeguards and Water Play Photos

The first topic session for this week was dedicated to a group of community workers who help people who are in difficulty mostly at the beach.

Now that summer is here we chose this topic to make the children more aware of what to look out for at the beach and what to do if they are in difficulty of any kind.

We started by preparing a picture mind map of all the things that we need to take at the beach to keep us safe and protect us.  These are the things the children came up with:

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However they learnt that at times although we take our safety gear to the beach there are other difficulties that we may encounter which are beyond our control and we should be aware of them.

There are also special people who help us in this regard – The Search and Rescue Lifesavers.

These people would be positioned at popular beaches usually sitting on a very high chair so they can get a clear view of the entire beach and the sea as well.  So if we see someone needs help we go to them or start shouting and they come to us.

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Besides these special workers we have to look out for other signs at the beach which mean specific things.

There is special flag system which shows us if a beach is safe to use or not.  These are some of the flags used.

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Other important points –

  • When we are swimming we have to be accompanied by an adult for now.
  • If a toy happens to move away into the water we don’t just rush to get it and end up in difficulty.
  • Whilst in the water we should not play rough by pushing or splashing water into people’s eyes.
  • Obviously since we are at the beach with a lot of people around we never walk away with strangers even if they offer us something delicious such as an ice-cream or a cute little toy.
  • Never go close to the yachts and other large sea vehicles.
  • Always obey our parents.

The children got to know that the lifeguards watch out for the large vehicles out at sea as well so they do not cross over a specific area.

Lifeguards themselves might go out at sea on their yachts or other sea vehicles to save lives.   This led us to the first letter of the week y – yachts.  You can find more information in the literacy blog.

The children created their own yacht using a plate washing sponge, a kebab stick and a sail made out of foam with their name written on it.  They played with their yacht during the water play session.

Here are the photos.

 

 

Term 3 Week 7 – People Help Us – Part 2 – Underground Workers

The topic we started with this week talks about different jobs people do underground.

First the children brainstormed what can possibly live under the sea and also what other things we can find under the ground before we explored the jobs that a person can do underground.

The easiest part for them was mentioning creatures living under the sea such as octopuses, whales, turtles, fish and starfish. They then associated these with scuba divers who dive under water to admire the lovely world that exists down under.  This is a song they really enjoyed singing to:

Under The Sea song –


The children pretended to be various creatures under the sea during one of our PE sessions on turf.  Here are a couple of photos where they are pretending to be starfish.


They also came up with a list of creatures which we can find underground.  Animals like rabbits, moles, foxes, mice, snakes, ants, worms and other tiny creatures.  Roots of plants and trees grow in soil.

There were a few children who mentioned precious minerals such as gold, diamonds and coal.  Bones were also mentioned which can be excavated and dug out.  Thus archeologists, diggers and miners come into play.

The children became aware that since the beginning of time mankind realised that underground could be used to their advantage.  Thus they explored and used underground caves to live in such as the caves in Ghar Dalam.

By time they also built their own homes underground such as Tarxien temples and the Hypogeum of Hal Saflieni.  Thus we have people who study history as well as archeologists already mentioned above who look at items found under ground.


The Maltese built tunnels to hide under ground during war and used them as a hiding place where they could plan their attacks.  (The children watched the 1st five minutes of the following video clip).


The Maltese also dug tunnels for the vapur tal-art to pass through.  The train operated between Mdina and Valletta passing through villages like Hamrun, Birkirkara, Attard and Rabat in the late 1800’s and beginning of the 1900’s.

The Malta Railway –


Some children mentioned that they rode on trains when they were abroad and passed through long tunnels so we saw a short video of how trains look nowadays and the difference in the tunnels which are found underground today to those of years back in time.

Underground trains –


The children were really interested when we mentioned the caves, as well as the train history in Malta so maybe you can find the time to take them to one of the caves or temples found on the Maltese Islands or else to the train museum in Attard.

Nowadays tunnels underground are used as sewers and where electricity cables pass through.  The children were made aware that workers do actually go underground to fix any damages that might occur.

The craft we decided to do for u-under was the letter u shape which the children glittered in blue to represent the sea.  They also coloured in a small fish with rainbow colours which they stuck under the letter u.  This craft is stuck on one of our mini bulletin boards in front of the class.

 

Term 3 Week 6 – People Who Help Us – Part 1 – Policeman

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On Thursday we started a new topic altogether – People who help us in the community and their Vehicles.

We started off by having a brainstorming session.  The children mentioned a list of the people who they thought help us in our everyday lives.  This is what they came up with:

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During the discussion these are the major facts which emerged.

  • All jobs are important because each person doing the job will be helping in some way.
  • People have different qualities which make them choose different jobs.
  • It is important to love your job.

We then looked at one of the jobs in particular – the policeman.  We mentioned several characteristics that a policeman might have such as being disciplined, observant, good eyesight, sharp listening skills and physically in shape so he could run if he has to catch a thief.

The children watched a story regarding the job of a policeman.


We mentioned that stealing and hurting other people should not be done and that is the job of the policeman to see that rules are followed to have a safe place to live in.

The children also mentioned that a policeman usually wears a uniform and that a policeman is there to help us and give us direction when needed.

We read the story called Policeman Small by Lois Lenski : Policeman Small by Lois Lenski

We then focused on the vehicles a policeman might drive such as a police car, a motor bike, a helicopter, a segway and last but not least a jeep.

J – jeep was the second letter we introduced this week


However the literacy work on this letter will commence next week.