Discovering the World Overview
MAD Academy help children learn about the many aspects of the world around them.
Click here to view the units in this Learning Element.
Discovering the World Overview
This Learning Element is all about introducing young children to the words and concepts relating to the world around them. Many of the songs and activities in the units will be familiar to your children and adults. However it is really important, which every unit you are doing, you bring it alive for the children with explanations and props. This Learning Element relies a lot on your imagination and encouraging the children to use theirs! So when sing about a pig, pretend to be a pig, make piggy noises with the children, show them a picture or a stuffed toy of a pig; ask who has seen a pig and what was it like; tell them about the pig – where it lives, what it likes to eat, what it might feel like if you stroked it, what its babies are called.
It may be nice to have a ‘Discovery Box’ which you bring to class and which you fill each half term with props related to the unit you are doing that half term. Whenever you sing a song or do an activity, you can ‘search’ in your discovery box to find the props you need to make it more exciting for the children. You could even encourage the children to guess what you will be getting out of your box by giving them some clues.
Also it’s good to remind children of what they did last week as they will enjoy the repetition and familiarity of returning to the same topic for a few weeks. For example you could say, “Do you remember last week we played a game all about farm animals and we looked at lots of farm pictures? Can you remember what animals we found on the farm? Well today we are going to sing about farms and we might meet some of the same animals – let’s look in our ‘Discovery Box’ and find out!”
This Learning Element appears in every Baby class and in every Two to Four class. However, in the Walkers to Two class it will alternate each half term with numeracy. At this age children are ready to begin to look at some simple aspects of numeracy as they are likely to be encountering numbers and colours in the world around them. In a way, the numeracy units are being introduced as another aspect of Discovering the World in the Walkers to Two class. Children are learning about numbers and colours in much the same way as they are discovering about animals or transport.
Every child’s experience of the world is different – they come from different types of family backgrounds, cultures, home environments, religions, etc. Try not to make any assumptions about what you think a child will or wont know. One child may never have seen a cow, another may live on a farm. One child may not have a grandparent, another may have 6!
For more detail on the way we support the development of understanding about the world within our classes, please see the background to each of the Discovering the World activities given on their description pages.