Critical Thinking in Kindergarten
An early start to teaching certain thought processes can sometimes pose a challenge. One way that I have found useful is through the use of a glyph. A glyph is a pictograph or hieroglyph. It is a non-standard way to collect, display, and interpret data. Students create pictures (the glyphs) by answering questions based on criteria or using a legend. The details of the final picture, or art project, represent the student who created it. In building the Snowmen Glyphs the Kindergartens class had to listen carefully to two snowmen stories. They had to compare, contrast, reason and draw conclusions about the stories. Next they made a choice of their favorite story, this is represented by the colour of the snowman’s vest. The snowman’s nose represents the students’ palate, do they prefer carrots or pickles and the number of buttons on the vest lets us know whether they have in fact built a real snowman or not. As the snowmen were morphing the students were also working on Numeracy skills by counting, sorting, tallying and graphing data.
When the snowmen were completed the students could sit back and match which snowman represented each classmate. This is a great hands-on activity and the children learn a little about each other along the way.
Aileen is the Principal of Keephills School and has spent 15 years with the division.