Monday, May 17, 2010

Sand Dunes and Sentences

I crossed paths with Kal-El in the kitchen today as he was digging in one of the drawers. He exclaimed "I need some straws to make sand dunes!" I followed him as he jogged back to the school room where his sand tray was set out and watched as he demonstrated blowing gently on the sand through the straw to make dunes.

It was a great idea and was certainly not anything I had come up with so I asked "who taught you how to do that?" Kal-El reported "I saw it on Sid the Science Kid!"

I let Kal-El watch 30 minutes early in the morning once or twice a week (Me Too doesn't watch any) and today was one of those days. Kal-El gets up at 6:15 a.m. and I am trying to recover from not sleeping on Saturday. Not surprisingly, about three seconds after I started the video and we started snuggling on the couch I fell asleep and missed all of the startling revelations about sand dunes. (If you go to this page and scroll to the "wind investigation" video you can see a clip of what he saw.)

After they were done with the sand tray, his face literally jumped as a lightbulb went off in his head. He said "I should write some directions so that other kids can do this too." I thought that would be fine and offered to get him some paper and crayons. He said, "No Mom, with this" and pulled the moveable alphabet off the shelf. Today was the day he had the spontaneous desire to start really writing with the moveable alphabet as it is intended to be used. This is what he wrote:

For those of you who are not terribly familiar with Montessori and with what these first attempts at writing tend to look like here is a translation:

"People, you have to blow sand."

It helps to know that Kal-El is aware that vowels can say their own name sometimes in addition to the basic short vowel sounds.

He asked to leave it out and says that tomorrow he will continue and add "with the straw to make the dunes.


  1. Cute sentence, don't you just love first attempts. Was so sad when little one (four) came home from school with two stickers on T-shirt, I asked "Why do you have two stickers." reply was "I wrote a good sentence, I got one for good word spacing, and one for a full stop. I would have got three but I forgot the capital letter." I asked what the sentence was and he showed me it in his book. "at scool i like to rite and sumtimes I like to droor." for goodness sake leave the kid alone!! (Not a montessori school)

  2. I love that he addressed it to "people"! What an awesome day.