# 2.2: Routines

- Page ID
- 205743

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**Criteria 2.1 **Incorporate STEM opportunities into routines.

## Routines and Rituals

**To incorporate STEM learning into the routine described in the vignette, you could add elements that encourage exploration and understanding of scientific concepts. Here are some suggestions:**

**1. **Measurement and Volume**:** Instead of using a clear plastic measuring cup with a red line, use different-sized containers with clear markings for volume. Have the toddlers compare the volume of different containers and discuss concepts like full, half-full, and empty.

**2. **Materials and Properties**:** Introduce different materials for the toddlers to explore during lunchtime, such as plastic, metal, and cloth. Encourage them to describe the properties of each material, like smooth, rough, soft, or hard.

**3. **Simple Machines**:** Integrate simple machines into the activity by using child-friendly versions of tools like levers (e.g., child-sized tongs), ramps (e.g., incline plates for sliding food), or wheels (e.g., rolling carts for serving).

**4. **Food Science**:** Discuss basic food science concepts, such as the states of matter (solid, liquid) and changes in food properties when cooked (e.g., bread becoming crispy when toasted).

5**. **Mathematics**: **Incorporate counting, sorting, and pattern recognition into the mealtime activities. For example, have the toddlers count the number of sandwiches on each plate or sort different types of food items based on color or shape.

**By adding these STEM elements, you can enhance the toddlers' learning experience during mealtime and promote their curiosity about the world around them.**

How to incorporate STEM into the lunchtime routine was generated using OpenAI. (2024). *ChatGPT* (3.5) [Large language model]. https://chat.openai.com

**Preschool Sign-In Routine**

Many preschool classrooms have children sign in when they arrive. This is a literacy-related activity as it involves letters and writing. It can even incorporate math if you count how many children are at school that day. However, STEM can be incorporated into this daily classroom routine in several ways. Teachers need to think about routines and be intentional in planning to incorporate STEM learning into parts of their day such as Sign-in. Read the example below to see how STEM can easily be integrated into one such routine.

Incorporating STEM into routines like sign-in sheets in a preschool setting can be both educational and engaging. Here are some ideas on how to do it:

**1. **Interactive Sign-In:**** Create an interactive sign-in board where children can use STEM-related elements. For example, instead of traditional names written on paper, use magnetic letters or blocks for children to spell their names. This promotes letter recognition, fine motor skills, and spatial awareness.

**2. **Graphing Attendance:**** Use the sign-in data to create simple graphs or charts. For example, tally how many children are present each day and represent this information using bar graphs or pictographs. Discuss the concepts of counting, comparing quantities, and interpreting data.

**3. **Technology Integration:**** Incorporate technology by using a digital sign-in system where children can tap their names on a touchscreen or use a digital pen to sign in. This introduces children to basic technology skills and reinforces the connection between STEM and everyday tasks.

**4. **Mathematical Patterns:**** Design the sign-in sheet to include patterns or sequences for children to follow. For instance, they may need to fill in missing numbers or complete a pattern of shapes or colors. This encourages critical thinking and mathematical reasoning.

**5. **Sensorial Sign-In:**** Integrate sensory elements into the sign-in process. For example, use textured materials like sandpaper or fabric for children to trace their names, promoting tactile exploration and sensory awareness.

**6. **STEM-themed Sign-In Questions:**** Include STEM-related questions on the sign-in sheet that children can answer or discuss with teachers. For instance, "What is your favorite animal and why?" or "Can you name a plant you saw outside today?" This encourages scientific thinking and vocabulary development.

**7. **Problem-Solving Challenges:** **Incorporate problem-solving challenges into the sign-in activity. For example, provide a set of building blocks and ask children to create a structure that represents something they learned recently. This fosters creativity, engineering skills, and communication.

By infusing STEM concepts into sign-in routines, preschool teachers can create meaningful learning experiences that connect everyday tasks with foundational STEM skills, fostering a love for inquiry and exploration in young children.

How to incorporate STEM into the preschool sign-in routine was generated using OpenAI. (2024). *ChatGPT* (3.5) [Large language model]. https://chat.openai.com