There is so much to explore beyond our planet, and our Pre-K girls are just getting started. Mrs. Prewitt's Pre-K class made their own solar systems with planets and stars after learning all about space.
The girls had a lot of questions about the universe after a Pre-K girl came dressed for Halloween as Hayley Arceneaux, a St. Jude physician assistant who went to space in September. Mrs. Prewitt recognized their curiosity and followed their lead. She prepared a lesson plan, and extended her girls' learning beyond their initial questions. She taught them about the phases of the moon, planet rotation and orbit, and how atmospheres vary on different planets.
Then, each girl got to create her own night sky and solar system. To make the night sky, girls cut out their stars, painted with water and watercolor paint, and sprinkled Epsom salt on the paper to give a twinkling effect. To create a solar system, the girls made planets and galaxies and added stars.
This project exemplifies how teachers in our early childhood program follow a Reggio Emilia-inspired approach to learning, which encourages our girls to engage in self-directed, exploratory learning to gain both knowledge of herself and the world around her.