Since this is a very new resource in our environment, we are just starting with transparent shapes and colours to see how the children are using it.
The table illuminates and draws your attention to the brightness of colour and details of shapes. The children have been exploring ways to use the shapes to make figures and sort into groups of sizes and colour.
Lila, Erin and Chloe each claim the shapes that they like the look of.
They discuss what their ideas are, each with their own design.
Lila groups hers while Erin and Chloe line up the shapes.
Children love to arrange and put things in order. There conversation centres around mathematical concepts such as comparison and length ... "I have more" or "my line is longer"
Lila revisits the light table again and now Ellie joins her.
This time Lila lines her shapes around the edge of the light table like a frame. Ellie is just keen to gather as many as she can!
Jiahe finds a quiet moment by herself at the light table. Right away she notices how the light makes her dress sparkle. Jiahe is so proud of her new Frozen dress that her Mum brought her.
Then she begins to make a line of the same shapes. She counts her counters each time she adds a new one.
Naomi comes to join Jiahe and helps her out by quietly passing new counters to her. They run out of the counters so they start collecting the triangles and diamonds...
....then squares and hexagons!
The girls are working collaboratively together and now instead of lining up the shapes, they begin to stack them on top of one another
As they stack the shapes they notice the colours can be mixed and change and they begin exploring with colour combinations
Madison joins Jiahe and Naomi and she adds another perspective to the ideas.
The light table has enabled these children to experiment with materials and play around with ideas and try things out with no object in mind and this can be an enjoyable, creative and valid approach to learning. (Te Whariki, Exploration, Goal 1) They are learning that curiosity is fun and surprising things can happen when you least expect it.
These learning experiences are the beginning of mathematical thought and it is also often demonstrated in their creative drawing, however the light table will provoke a new way of thinking about numbers, colours and shapes.