Play-based learning with Play-Doh

Kindergarten students learning Japanese have been experimenting with colours by playing games and activities, all in Japanese.

“One of their favourite activities is listening to a story called ‘Iro iro iro no hon’ (Mix it up), also known as ‘magic book’ to the students,” Assistant Head of Junior School Languages (Asian Languages) Machiko Sensei said.

“Through the story and other activities, students have demonstrated their good understanding of colour mixing.”

Taking their knowledge to a practical understanding, students experimented with Play-Doh.

Using four different colours of Play-Doh: “aka” (red), “ao” (blue), “kiiro” (yellow) and “shiro” (white), plus a colour wheel and colour mixing record sheet, they explored colour mixing independently, and observing how the colours changed.

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Colour mixing experiments in Kindergarten Japanese

“Zachary proudly showed his mixing record sheet, reporting that he made ‘midori’ (green) by mixing ‘kiiro’ and ‘ao’,” Machiko Senseii said.

“Next to him, Harper was busy trying to mix kiiro and aka, while Hannah and Austin were busy creating colours to fit in the colour wheel.

“Ryan and Georgia were trying to make ‘orenji’ (orange). They claimed that their Play-Doh looked like aka and was too dark, so after a short discussion, they agreed to add more kiiro to lighten the colour.”

Machiko Senseii explained that “young children learn best through play”.

“This activity allowed the students to apply their knowledge of colours in Japanese to a real situation where they could call out the name of colours to express themselves purposefully,” she said.