Thursday, October 25, 2012

Surprise Salt Tray Printing

Finger printing in fun materials like salt, sand, paint, flour, and hair gel is a great way to encourage literacy experiences for young, tactile learners. In my experience anything messy is immediately going to be a hit with many children.  We have been exploring letter recognition around here lately. I decided to update an old favourite.

I filled a ridged baking sheet with fine salt (with a surprise taped underneath).

As my children explored the salt, a rainbow background was revealed in their prints (it was simply construction paper taped underneath to resemble the colours of the rainbow). My children were amazed at the rainbow colours that they would be rewarded with upon drawing and fingerprinting in the salt. "It's magic!" exclaimed Cadence as she printed her name.

Both spent lots of time exploring the trays and engaged in many activities including...

...creating random designs

...writing their names

...practising letters

...practising high frequency 'words of the week'

...even writing numbers

Surprise salt trays would be a motivating way to encourage children to practice letter printing, letter recognition, and writing high frequency words for those teachers who are interested in exploratory ways of engaging their children in RTI activities.

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