It was the beginning of body group. We ran to the circle, eager to see what we might discuss today. We sang a wiggle song... moving parts of our body differently as we shook, flapped, or jiggled. We then sang a matching song to put our hands and in our laps and be ready to talk.
What is a foot? What does it do? The conversation began with these two questions but lead to so much more.
Next we discussed how a foot is different from a hand. What is the same about feet and hands? "They have the same number..." said M. We then counted and unanimously agreed that they have the same number. "Same size!" said J. We all put our hands and feet together and agreed they are the same size.
"Now, what is different about hands and feet?" I said. "Feet do different things." said M. Everyone seemed to have a hard time finding differences so I said, "Do you think you can pick up this marker with your foot?"
L tried first and could not pick it up. Then A tried and was about to put the marker between her toes and pick it up. After that everyone could do it. One by one every child in the group got up and picked up the marker with A's technique. It then became easy when everyone thought it was just so hard before. To continue thinking about feet I showed the class a picture of a group of animals. We described what their feet do and if they can do some things we do with our feet. We found out that we are pretty limited in our uses of feet compared with a monkey. Do you think you can grab onto a branch and swing from tree to tree? Or could you open a banana with your foot?
I motioned how it would look to try to eat a banana with your foot. "We would fall down" said V. "Why is that?" I asked. There was silence looking around the room all eyes full of curiosity. "Balance!" I said. Should we talk about balance next week? Everyone said yes.
Then we got out tracing paper with markers and worked on drawing our feet. We filled in where we had differences from hands and other animals.