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How Did You Make That?

Background

By speaking about what is being done as it is done, children learn to associate specific meanings to words. Sometimes these words could be new to them, in which case, they attach a tentative meaning to it. Also children focus on the speaking style to pick up language structures and intonations.

Aim

To speak about a process.

Activities

Teach children how to make things with paper, cloth, or any other available material. Making a paper boat, a hand puppet, or cat-cradles would be fine. Make elaborate comments on what you are doing as you demonstrate while the children are following you with the appropriate material in their hands. For example, if you are demonstrating how to make a paper boat, describe each step: 'Fold the paper in half. Now turn the corners inwards Lift the remaining strip…'

When children have learnt how to make the thing, ask them to describe the process. Next time, assign different things to different groups, and let one group explain to the other how it made its thing.

Related Questions

As a variation, you can get children to give instructions for carrying out specific tasks. This will help them to realise the importance of being precise and fluent in their communication.

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Adapted from: "The Child's language and the teacher - A handbook", Krishna Kumar, UNICEF.

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