Lately I’ve been looking for ways to extend the learning that has been happening at my small building centre. Basically, snap cubes have taken over our classroom. What started as a daily activity by a small group of boys soon spread into a full-on class obsession with all things related to building with this “Lego-like” material.
I had never looked at snap cubes and thought “Lego” before. It was my students who clued me in when I asked why it was their number one choice of activity each day:
W.W. “These are just like Lego. You can build whatever you want with them.”
G.M. “Lego is our favourite. But we don’t have Lego here. It’s ok though, because snap cubes are just like Lego. They stick together and have different colours and you can make whatever you want.”
Although I was completely amazed and inspired with what the children were able to construct with their snap cubes, how they problem-solved and worked together, and how they presented their discoveries and creations with the class, I’ll admit there have been times when I struggled with the snap cube craze in my classroom. There were certainly children that worked with snap cubes and only snap cubes, children that fought over having a turn there, and children who turned their noses up at the carefully organized provocations we put out at other centres.
In the end, we decided to embrace the interest in snap cubes. We moved them to their own centre (a Snap Cube Building Workshop) and, after some discussions with the class about balance and fairness, noticed that the children were able to make better choices about when to visit the snap cube centre and when to try something new.
Does your class have an activity or material that your students just can’t put down? How did you embrace the children’s interests?
You can read what happened next at this centre by clicking here: https://thecuriouskindergarten.wordpress.com/2014/03/10/snap-cube-workshop-inspiring-young-authors/