Cabell County Career Technology Center Supports Explorer Academy Preschool Students

Explorer Academy Children Build Cribs with Help from Cabell County Career Technology Center Students
Posted on 05/12/2017
Explorer Academy Preschool Students Visit Cabell County Career Technology Center

Preschool students from the Marshall University Early Education STEAM Center at Explorer Academy visited the Cabell County Career Technology Center on May 4, 2017.

Through open exploration in the dramatic play area the preschool children began to show an interest in babies. During this exploration, the children were asked what other materials are needed to care for babies.  One child responded, “Well, we probably need a place for them to sleep.”  Another child said, “Yeah, like a crib.  I have one at home for my new baby.”  They began researching types of cribs and brainstorming materials needed to construct cribs for their “doll friends”.  “We need a bottom with a pillow so the baby can sleep,” one child noticed when looking at pictures of cribs.  Another child said, “We have to put these stripes (slats) on so the baby won’t fall out.” 

With the assistance of students in the Construction Academy at Cabell County Career Technology Center, children were given the opportunity to build cribs from their design.  Prior to the trip, children generated learning targets and discussed bus and tool safety protocols. 

“Child-generated learning targets allow the children to take ownership of the task or goal while working,” says Kelcie Blankenship, preschool teacher. 

Blankenship continues, “During construction, several children were reminding others, ‘remember, I can be safe with the tools’.  Children also discussed what ‘safe’ meant regarding the tools.  ‘It means to be careful and use it for the crib, not on other things’.”

Kelcie says, “When the children returned to Explorer Academy they reflected on their work by looking at pictures, recalling favorite moments, and creating mail for their new friends from the Construction Academy.  One child said, ‘Mine says I love working with them’.  Another child said, ‘I liked building the crib with the worker guys’.”

Kelcie says, through this experience, the children have researched a topic of interest, generated a plan and followed through with the plan to complete their learning goals.  They also worked with experts to build a crib, generate questions and learning targets and reflect on their work.  These experiences coincide with the Early Learning Standards as well as the EL Education model where children take ownership of learning and are proud of their accomplishments.

For more information, please contact Kelcie Blankenship at Explorer Academy by calling (304) 528-5126.

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