Cars and Trucks


We spent this week at HCS preparing for our Touch a Truck fundraiser.  We’ll be at 80 Border St. tomorrow, 9/29 from 1-4 PM with loads of awesome trucks, cars, activities, and music–come join us!

Most of the students are well aware that “Touch a Truck Day” is coming up soon and they are so excited!  The usual degree of interest and fascination with 4-wheeled vehicles has been magnified dramatically this week, so the staff capitalized on that for some automotive activities.  Transportation vehicles lend themselves quite easily to many math and pre-math skills, all while tapping into a seemingly universal, natural interest.  Cars can be lined up in a sequence or order, for example.  They can be sorted based upon defining characteristics.  They even provide a great opportunity for counting: how many wheels?  How man doors?  How many windows?  Cars can be an excellent source of social learning as well.  Students can play with them individually, or collaboratively with each child taking his or her own car to drive.

Our week started with a shape exploration:  what shapes come together to make cars?  Each child used a piece of black construction paper as their base, then built their own cars using squares, rectangles, and circles.  They practiced following directions and sequencing in order to make their cars representational, if they were so inclined.  Later in the week, thanks to the creativity of one of our parent helpers, we made our own road maps for the floor!  Kristen brought us two shower curtains, as well as markers, upon which the grown-ups drew roads with permanent markers.  The students contributed buildings, road signs, and landscaping with crayons.  Once it was completed, they raced our classroom cars in and out of the intersections, always obeying the posted laws of course!

We began ramping up the scale of our activities mid-week, getting ready for the big trucks on Saturday!  Recycling some old cardboard, Peter created a mega-ramp at the end of one of the slides on the playground.  Each child took turns launching one of our big plastic trucks from the classroom down the ramp.  Woah, did they fly!  It gave us a tangible example of why we go down slides with our feet first!  The maco-car theme (along with the theme of recycling) continued as we first turned our ordinary tables into cars, then made giant box cars.  The Tugboats worked so well together this week, each contributing ideas for our creations and taking turns painting or adding details.  I’d say we’re ready for the real deal!