Institution: The Peacock Montessori Nursery
Age group: 3 to 5
Group size: 6 to 8 children
Session leader: Hannah Laurie
Date: Summer 2015
Activity: 30 minute introductory workshop.
“It was wonderful to watch the children problem solving for themselves and making their own next steps.”
How did Cyril Jackson incorporate the Cubetto Playset into their program?
Due to the age range of the children in the nursery, we opted to investigate simple programming and exploring. We also decided upon introducing the floor map. Before the floor map was used we allowed the children to use the whole floor space and to gather small wooden animals as they went along. We also tried programming Cubetto to reach the doorways and exits. We also linked Montessori colour boxes into the activity by talking about sorting and matching colours.
What worked well?
It is a great activity to support teamwork and to encourage all age groups to work together. It was wonderful to watch the children problem solving for themselves and making their own next steps. The instructions are very simple for the children to understand and it can be made more or less complicated as required. I believe it has made the children more aware of their surroundings and spacial awareness and it has encouraged them to look at their setting differently.
How did students respond?
The children seemed to love it and have asked to use it nearly every day. It is encouraging that they are asking questions about programming and asking ‘why?’ Some children have watched from a distance and these ones seem to have picked up the concept quicker than the ones who have not watched first.
“Staff that have been using Cubetto think that it could be a valuable addition to the Montessori setting and they love that it is wooden rather than plastic.”
How did staff members respond?
The members of staff involved with Cubetto think that it could be a valuable addition to the Montessori setting and they love the idea that it is wooden and not plastic as the majority of programmable gadgets for this age group are. I think that it is great because it covers a wide age range of subjects, and I think it will be a great piece of equipment for our after school club and holiday clubs.
What were the main outcomes?
The children quickly grasped the idea of programming and thoroughly enjoyed taking turns to collect their wooden animal to get on board. They waited patiently and supported each other well if they became stuck and helped each other to problem solve. They enjoyed using the floor map as a control and have designed their own unique designs such as treasure islands on plain paper. Younger children (2 to 3 year olds) became involved once the Montessori colour boxes were introduced into the activity.