During preschool, children begin learning about a variety of academic and life skills and activities. They learn the cycle and process of a variety of things and an ideal way to promote an understanding of important cycles and processes is with sequencing activities. With these activities, preschool children arrange items in the correct order, and the activity helps them understand and retain important sequences of events.
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Being able to arrange the events in a story in the order in which they occur is a crucial part of reading comprehension. Promoting reading comprehension at the preschool age can help to set children up for success with this essential skill. In order to promote this skill, provide children with opportunities to sequence the events that occur in stories they are familiar with. Photocopy images from the beginning, middle and end of a recognisable children's story. Set the images out in a mixed-up order, and encourage students to arrange the images in the order in which they occur in the story. After they sequence the images, have children offer a description of the parts of the story that the images illustrate.
Put sequencing into action with an activity that students will not only enjoy partaking in, but also likely enjoy the ending result -- baking cookies. Set out pictures that illustrate the sequence of baking cookies: ingredients, baking tray, oven and cookies, as well as the actual items. Explain to students that you are going to be baking cookies but you are a bit confused about how the process of baking cookies works. Arrange the pictures in a purposely mixed-up order -- cookies first, ingredients second and oven third, for example. Show the pictures to your students, and ask them if the pictures show the correct order. Then ask them to help you arrange the pictures in the proper order. After children arrange the pictures in the correct sequence, bake a real batch of cookies.
Use patterns as a means of teaching preschool students sequencing. Use colourful objects to create a simple pattern; for example, red jelly bean, green jelly bean, red jelly bean, green jelly bean. Ask children if they can see the sequence in the pattern. Set out a bowl of jelly beans, and encourage children to use the jelly beans to continue the sequence. Once students exhibit an understanding of this simple pattern, create more difficult patterns to see if they can recognise the sequence of these patterns.
Practice sequencing with sounds. Make up a simple sound sequence, such as hand clap, foot tap, hand clap, foot tap. After making the sounds, ask children if they can identify the sequence and continue making it on their own. Once students exhibit an ability to identify and repeat the simple sound sequence, come up with a more complex sound sequence, such as hand clap, hand clap, foot tap, knee slap. See if children can identify the more complex sound sequence. Ask children to make up their own sound sequences for the class to continue.
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