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CLASSROOM ENVIRONMENT
 

Room Arrangement:

 

Each classroom area has its own character and special attractions. Some children initially only want to play in one or two of the areas, places where they feel comfortable. Therefore, it is important to integrate curriculum content, goals, and objectives across all of the areas. In an effort to attract every child to interest areas, teachers make frequent changes and additions to these spaces. For example, if Johnny always seems to gravitate to the Dramatic Play Area, the teacher might be able to entice him to the Block Area if she puts some camping equipment or a construction worker’s uniform there. Those props might provide the comfort zone he needs to “risk” playing in a new area.


The physical arrangement of Interest Areas is also very important to effective classroom management and harmony. The more active, noisy centers like the Block, Dramatic Play, and Music Areas should be grouped together. Areas associated with quieter play (computer and reading areas) should also be grouped accordingly. Materials are always stored at children’s eye level for easy, independent accessibility at all times.

 


Learning Through Play in the “Interest Areas”:

 

Here are just a few examples of the many skills that children practice and master as they play in the many Interest Areas.

  1. Block Area: Working with blocks of all types helps children develop math, spatial relations, and problem solving skills.

  2. Library/Writing Area: This quiet area has the appropriate cues to enable a distraught or over-stimulated child to regain his or her composure.Children can also build on pre-reading and writing skills through the exploration of print in various contexts (listening center, books, and inventive writing). Listening to stories or looking at pictures stimula tes imagination as children become immersed in the characters and themes of books.

  3. Dramatic Play Area: This is the place where children can “act out” (represent) different scenarios in their lives that they are trying to understand. Dramatic play also creates the perfect stage for practicing social skills and learning how to share and take turns.

  4. Music Area: Children naturally love music. Moving and singing to music helps strengthen skills associated with physical coordination, cultural diversity, counting and numbers, language, phoneme awareness, and reading readiness.

Children’s Day Nursery and Family Center, 104 Jefferson Street, Passaic, NJ 07055