Archive for November 8th, 2013

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Edutainment at the Early Childhood Center

 

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Edutainment at the Early Childhood Center

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Yesterday, at the Early Childhood Center (ECC), the children enjoyed a special assembly designed to educate as well as entertain. The “Aspiring Animal Assembly” featured a puppet show, dance routine, and special guest appearances. The assemblies always have elements of physical therapy, occupational therapy, and language therapy mixed in for good measure.

The show, like the previous assembly – Stuffed Animal Circus, was based on an educational theory. The staff was inspired by a study from two academics, Hart and Risley, who demonstrated the advantages to exposing children to unusual language. The practice helps build young student’s internal thesauruses, building valuable language skills that can even transfer to other areas of study. The educators teach students new words by integrating the target vocabulary into stories, and using them repetitiously. The words for today’s assembly were: aspiration, persistence, and achievement. In the first story of the day, Pig Island, Mr. Pig aspired to go to an island; through his persistence, he achieved his goal.

If you observe the behavior of the students after an assembly, you can see the words are sticking. After a recent magic-themed assembly, one boy was seen practicing his new vocabulary in the hallway. His favorite words? “Appear” and “disappear,” of course!

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