My preschool students use our building center on a daily basis, and they love it! When I shared how I set up the block center, I mentioned a structure book I created for it. Since writing that post, I’ve received many emails and messages about this book. So I thought I’d share a little bit more about it here!
Why add a structures book to the block center?
I really wanted to show my students that there are many different ways of building. On top of that, I was interested in integrating more literacy and culture throughout the classroom. Plus, I love making books with and for my students!
Each structure is labeled with its name, as well as the country where it’s located. While I don’t expect the kiddos to sit there and read every word, it’s still literacy that’s available in the room. Kiddos have drawn pictures of different buildings, then used the book as a reference to write the buildings’ names. Sometimes they’ve even written the names on a piece of paper and placed it by their own structure. On top of that, the building names can sometimes act as a hook for letter sounds (oh, ‘pyramids’ starts the same way as ‘Paul!’).
Right now, the structure book has 23 countries represented. Obviously, I couldn’t include a building from every single country in the world. Rather, I chose to find famous structures from a variety of places. There are still some cultures I’d like represented that aren’t included, but I can add more in the future. Having buildings from around the world leads to discussions about different people and places. Geography lessons can easily spring from these discussions, as can basic engineering concepts.
This book is rather lengthy, with a total of 30 pages. Depending on the kids in your class, you might want to just use a few pictures at a time. You can always rotate the pictures to keep things interesting for the students. I started the year with about 10 structures, adding more as the year progressed.
Making a structure book for the block center
I kept it pretty simple. Each page was printed out, mounted on construction paper, and laminated. I then punched a hole in each page, and placed everything on a binder ring. My book held up for about a year like this, and I think it can last a little while longer. Next time, I may bind the pages together so it’s a bit sturdier.
Get a free copy of my structure book
I’m finally making a copy of my structure book available to you, my lovely readers! I would have done so earlier, but I wanted to make sure all of the photo credits were correct before passing it along. I’d like to give a big thanks to Amy of Wildflower Ramblings for encouraging me to finish it!
I’m making a free copy of this book available to my email subscribers (it’s a one-time link, so be sure to bookmark it)! If you sign up, it just means you’ll receive an email any time there’s a new post published at Fun-A-Day. If you’re already a subscriber, you’ll receive an email with the link this week!
* Update – Sometimes the emails get redirected to your spam or “social” folders. Please be sure to check them if you don’t receive an email. Feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you need any help! 🙂 *