Saturday, 24 May 2014

Learning Via TV Programmes

Recently I had the privilege to observe JS work on a craft activity based on a video clip. I My purpose was to "evaluate" his developments in understanding instructions given by a stranger because as a parent, I might always try to explain things based on his level of understanding. 
JS has been repeatedly watching Mister Maker making this Bubble Wrap Cactus for about a month before he had the chance to make one for himself. The reason was because we did not have any pipe cleaners at home. We also did not have enough bubble wrap to do the craft. 

So, there was this day when he came to me again and said: "Mommy, I want to make bubble wrap cactus. Can you buy some pipe cleaners, please?" Since I was planning to do some marketing and the art and craft shop is just next door, I agreed. I was also hoping that they sell bubble wraps too but to my disappointment, they don't. Anyway, I already had some other plans in mind. 

Besides "evaluating" him doing his own work by referring to the video clip, I would also let him learn about modifying or using substitutes when we do not have the exact resources. 

When we got home, he immediately got off to work. 

JS watching Mister Maker to check whether he has the right items he needs to work on his
Bubble Wrap Cactus. 

We turned on the video and JS started running around the house to gather the materials needed as Mister Maker names them. The items include bubble wraps, glue stick, sticky tapes, pipe cleaners, a flower pot, some paint and a paintbrush. 

Then he took the only bubble wrap we had and started rolling it with a pipe cleaner. That was what Mister Maker did so that was what he was supposed to do too but I stopped him. I told him that we only have one bubble wrap but we have to make three cactus stem so if he used the entire wrap for one stem, we will not be able to make a cactus just like the he sees in the video. Then I told him that we could cut the bubble wrap in three equal portions since we have a very small flower pot. He agreed. 

JS cutting the bubble wrap into three equal portions. 

I continued to watch him work as he rolled the first stem. He had some difficulties trying to hold on the rolled portion with one hand and applying glue with the other. He did the same with the second stem. 

However, for the third stem, he decided to do things differently. After putting sticky tapes on the pipe cleaner to hold it in place before rolling, he applied glue on the other end of the bubble wrap. He said, "Must put glue first, ok." I was glad to see that he was able to find another method to make the work easier for him.

JS applying glue first before rolling. 

Lastly, he painted the cactus with some green poster colour. The correct way of doing it was to add some gloppy glue to the colour before painting. We did not and the colour could not stick on the bubble wrap and came off easily. Nevertheless, JS was very proud of this make. 

From this session, I was glad to discover that he was able to
1) understand most of the instructions given and 
2) change the method of doing things according to his abilities

JS painting his Bubble Wrap Cactus.

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