Costco had a deal on a rolling file rack and I thought it might be a convenient organizational tool for the classroom so I scooped one up when the price went down! I opened it up during play time, pretty sure I’d get some help:) Several kids moved in and out wanting to tighten a screw and then moving on, but this crew saw it through to completion.
As we were working, tightening nuts and bolts the boys asked, “which way do we turn it?” I responded “righty tighty, lefty loosey”… my mantra whenever I’m pretending to be handy:) This prompted “which way is right?” and then lots of discussion about ‘right’ as the boys changed positions and ‘right’ seemed rather elusive! They were landmarking ‘right’ as it related to the classroom (ie. right is toward the door, left is toward the bathroom) and were then confused when they’d get turned around facing a different direction, turn the screw and it would come undone instead of tightening! It’s a tricky concept, and it took a bit of explaining, and encouraging them to landmark on their own self- “I am right handed so I can remember I write with my right hand” or “when I hold up by left hand in front of me and stick out my thumb it makes a capital letter L, so I can remember my left hand makes an L”.
Evan overheard and joined in. Clearly this is a conversation he’s had before and together we demonstrated that when he and I faced each other our opposite limbs were lined up with each other. He said “see? this is my right, but it’s Mrs. Raymond’s left. And this is my left and it’s Mrs. Raymond right.” We then faced the same direction and showed again.
Graham made a connection to how the traffic travels… “cars drive on the right, but the ones on the other right are going the other way!” I also reminded the boys about our Nature Walk last week and how I asked children to stand off to the right if a bike was coming. On our way back from the hike Noah questioned me when “off to the right” was now on the other side of the path!! Who knew it could be so tricky!?
Anyway, we chatted away while we worked and my rolling file rack is now assembled and a few more students know their left from their right, a happy byproduct indeed!
Marat tightened screws with a screw driver, and Graham and Finn took turns tightening the screw with a screw driver and holding the bolt still with a wrench.