Teachable Moment: Graphs and Charts

A teachable moment: chart about our lunch beveragesAt the end of the school year, I started eating lunch on Wednesday with some of the older preschoolers who were staying for our afternoon “Reading Ready, Math Smart,” program. Basically we are our sack lunches, cleaned up, and sang some reading and math songs I had on my iPhone. A pretty exciting thing happened on one of those days, though. We were all talking about what flavor juice we had for lunch, and the kids were trying to keep track of how many of each kind of juice was represented.

It seemed like the perfect opportunity to teach them about making a chart, so I strode over to the pad, grabbed a marker and drew a chart, with a picture to indicate each flavor, and then a face for each kid who had a juice box. We talked about it. One of the other teachers came in with her pop, and we added that to the graph.

Without much thinking about it, we had just hit Illinois Early Learning standard 10.A.ECa. And that was way more interesting than fruit snacks.