An important element of the curriculum at Carousel Nursery School is to extend children’s knowledge of different cultures. Multiculturalism is encouraged in different ways. Different settings of Carousel Nursery School celebrate festivals from various cultures. However, this learning is also an ongoing process as the nursery has children and teachers belonging to various cultures and nationalities.
On Wednesday 19th September children at Ruoholahti Nursery school celebrated Moscow day. Preschool children at Ruoholahti have shown a lot of interest in different countries. Led by children’s interest there is also an ongoing project on ‘countries of the world’. Therefore, Moscow day was of special interest to this group.
Special activities for Moscow day
Children had a special show and tell wherein they could bring souvenirs, postcards or any other items related to Russia. Children enjoyed talking about these items. Matryoshka dolls were one of the most common souvenirs the children brought from home. They were also most excited about them. Children were also asked to compare the size of the dolls. This gave the group an opportunity to discuss the mathematical concept of sizes.
Children and teachers discussed some interesting Russian games. Children also learnt some simple everyday words in Russian language. Some of the Russian children in the group also helped to translate certain words from Russian to English. At story time children and teachers read a book on Russia. Children also listened to Russian music.
Lead by children’s interest in Matryoshka dolls, teachers organized an activity where children could make the dolls themselves. There was also the option of coloring pictures of Matryoshka dolls. After coloring the dolls, children used age appropriate scissors to cut the dolls. Children also talked about some famous monuments in Moscow. Children and teachers looked at pictures of the St. Basil’s cathedral at the Red square in Moscow. Later children also colored pictures of the cathedral.
Varied learning opportunities
Talking about different souvenirs from Russia gave the children opportunities to express themselves and articulate their ideas. While listening to each other not only improved children’s knowledge of Russian culture and Moscow but it also helped in promoting the development of their listening skills.
While making, coloring and cutting Matryoshka dolls, children got opportunities to experiment with their fine motor skills. Using different materials also gave children opportunities for sensory exploration.
Last but not the least children’s knowledge of different cultures was enhanced as they talked about Moscow.