Preschool Program

January 2022

Exploring Force and Velocity

This morning, one of the children requested a paper airplane to be made for them. Naturally, many more children began to request these to be made as well. What do you do when you have paper airplanes…? THROW THEM! The children explored how they could make these planes fly through the air. As they are doing this Selena and Lolo begin to hear words like “far, close, long, short, big, small.” This fits very naturally into the children’s current exploration into pre math skills. This conversation then led into some very interesting discussion around force and velocity that left us with so many theories we plan on testing as the week progresses. We are hoping to be able to use these theories to get a better understanding of what the children are exploring and how we can support them in this.

At morning circle, Selena revisited what the children were doing in hopes of getting some more theories and helping the children to practice their reflective thinking, and deductive reasoning skills. As Selena facilitated this conversation, Lolo sat and observed and recorded the children's words. Selena gave each child who wanted a turn a chance to throw their planes and began a discussion around the distance they travelled and the reason behind it. The following is a detailed account of the discussions that were happening.

Selena “K, where did your planning land?”

K “Really far over there”

Selena “W, your turn, Where did yours go”

W “Mine went through over there.”

Selena “R it’s your turn (R throws his and it lands at his feet) Did R’s go long or short?

W “Really Really far”

Selena then points across the room and says again “Did R's go long (pointing far) or short (pointing down to the ground in front of them”

Children answer in unison “Short”

Selena “How can we see how long or short it went”

V “You can measure”

Lolo “Wow, that's a new word…what does it mean to measure?”

V “A measure means something went far or short.”

C throws hers and it does not travel very far. The children say that it went short.

Selena “Why did it go short”

C “Because I didn’t throw it very hard”

Selena “So if I throw mine soft, how far will it go?”

V “It will go far I think”

Lolo ( helping the children use their reflective thinking skills) “I remember C said that hers went short because she didn’t throw it very hard. So if Selena throws hers soft where will it go?

R “ Short because you don’t throw it hard.”

C “Really Really short”

W “short”

V “Actually, it will go short.”

Selena (testing the children’s understanding “So if I throw it hard, will it go long or short?”

V “Far because you throw it really really hard!”


Lauren Dewar RECE, Selena Martin