The other day Miss 4 and I collected leaves from our garden. We have been outside a lot lately… read about our experiences with ducks here and trees here. We then sorted and classified the leaves by colour. Here is the video…
Next we had a chat about the leaves, I asked:
Which pile has the more? Brown or green(I just kept the comparing to two sets to keep it simple)
Then I asked: Which pile has the most? (this is a challenging concept that relates to “more” but requires comparing ALL piles at once)
Then I added in a inferencing question: why do you think we collected more brown 🍁? This was an interesting discussion where Miss 4 told me trees “like making brown leaves better”🤔
Through this activity, we were essentially collecting and discussing data.
The piles may not what you typically think of when you hear “data”, but it is a simple way to start the journey towards formal data collection, graphing and tables…
Understanding data is a really important skill for children to develop. Think of how many tables, graphs and sources of data we as adults are presented with on a daily basis. From timetables, to phone plans, to population statistics or rainfall and temperature. All these require us to unpack and comprehend what the collection of information is telling us.
So as I always say… it is never to early to start with simple discussion related to data… and starting with something your child has collected is so authentic.
So this week I encourage you to collect something… rocks, toys, leaves, or shells. Sort the items in some way and then have a discussion about the data you have collected- what does it mean? what do you wonder?
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