If you Give a Child an Apple . . .
Perhaps you are familiar with Laura Numeroff’s gem, If You Give a Mouse a Cookie. We all could write adult equivalents. These would read something like this:
If I set out to do the laundry, I’ll notice that we’re almost out of fabric softener. When I go to write it on the grocery list, I’ll remember that the next time I go to the store, I really should stop by the dry cleaner next door. Thinking of the dry cleaner reminds me that I need to find the tag the clerk gave me. While looking for the tag, I’ll come across a cute picture that I still haven’t framed because it shows my child with a big stain on her shirt. Thinking about the big stain, I’ll remember that I was doing laundry and make my way back downstairs…
Numeroff’s story line is familiar and recognizable, perhaps even more so in the classroom. Kindergarteners want to learn about apples, which means we should learn who made apples, read some stories about apples, and practice how to write “apple.” While learning to write “apple,” we’ll need to pause and talk about how to draw the letter p in such a way that the lower half is beneath the line. The focus on how to make that shape will cause us to consider that we really should teach how to draw apples, and while we’re at it, learn about someone who drew them especially well. Introducing Cezanne means we’ll have to talk about where he lived, what other countries are, when the artist lived, and how we can think about numbers to help us begin to grasp how long ago the nineteenth century was.
All this interconnected learning helps our students see how things cohere. It provides ample invitations for all kinds of learners to connect and be drawn in. Learning is a feast, and we hope you’ll join our table!
About the Author
Imported from across the Atlantic, where she learned to love languages, old cities, and a great cup of coffee, Margot has served at Trinity Christian School since 2003. Her awe of God and the work He is doing at TCS increases with each passing year.