Apa Saadia is the Grade 0 teacher at Little Folks Preschool in Lenasia, South Africa. She has been a teacher at Little Folks for 4 years and believes in the power of manipulatives to get her learners engaged and excited. Her learners spend plenty of time learning indoors, so Apa Saadia uses the Play Box to get them moving and playing outside.
Apa Saadia has recently started introducing coding and robotics. She takes her learners to the grass patch outside and asks them to form a circle. She scatters some different coloured LEGO® DUPLO bricks in the middle. Her learners warm up by jogging on the spot, jumping, and squatting. She then introduces and demonstrates the movements associated with each instruction. When she calls ‘LEFT’, her learners run in a circle towards the left, and when she says ‘RIGHT’, they run towards the right. They playfully correct each other when they confuse their left and right. Her instructions also include ‘JUMP’, ‘SQUAT’, and ‘COLOUR’, which are all instructed randomly between running. When she says ‘COLOUR’, the learners look at the colour displayed on a robot Apa Saadia controls and holds for her learners to see. Once her learners identify the colour on the robot, they quickly dive for the matching colour brick in the centre of the circle. They giggle as they dodge each other and fall over their own feet diving for a brick.
After a few rounds, Apa Saadia removes most of the bricks and leaves behind only the red bricks. The learners all run in a circle as she calls out instructions. When she says ‘BRICK’, the learners dive for a brick, and the learner without a brick sits down. A brick is removed each round until only one brick remains between 2 learners. The learners cheer and laugh as the remaining 2 learners run around the circle and nosedive as they playfully compete for the last brick.
Apa Saadia finishes off the lesson with some basic stretches and takes her learners inside for more playful learning. Her learners concentrate better and listen more attentively after some movement and physical activity. Apa Saadia always tries to accommodate different learning styles in her lessons, and she uses Play Box to engage her learners beyond pen-and-paper activities.