ICS Early Years Center Blog

Inter-Community School Zurich, Switzerland

September 18, 2013
by Rebecca Smith
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A Favourite Picture Book in EY1

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Vere, Ed. Banana, United Kingdom: Penguin, 2008. Print

Last week we read the book ‘Banana’ written by Ed Vere. It is a story of Two Monkeys and One Banana. The book uses only 2 words – ‘Banana’ and ‘Please’. It’s bright, clear and animated illustrations make it easy to understand and imagine the drama unfolding in the story. It follows the interaction between the monkeys who are unable to share at the beginning of the story, but then the magic word ‘Please’ is used and we see the glorious sharing of the banana. This is a fantastic book which can help to address the social, emotional and language development of young children through exploring and developing an understanding of manners, kindness and sharing.

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Vere, Ed. Banana, United Kingdom: Penguin, 2008. Print

Throughout the week we observed children using the magic word ‘Please’ during their interactions. Some children noticed and made connections when they or a peer, particularly those who are learning English, used a ‘magic word’. Letizia remarked, “He (Soichi) said ‘Thank you’ because I gave him a marble, because he’s playing with the marbles.”

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Later in the week the children were invited to help in a group to make playdough. The children did a wonderful job of waiting to take a turn to add an ingredient or to mix with the wooden spoon. We practiced using words such as, ‘Please’, ‘Thank you’ and the phrase ‘Can I please have a turn’. As a group we decided to make the playdough yellow in colour. Once it was ready to use we observed the children rolling the playdough to make their very own bananas. It seems that the children were inspired by the ‘Banana’ book. We noticed that the children (even those for whom English is a second language) talking with their peers using the vocabulary from the book as they shaped the playdough and acted out the story. It was a joy to watch the shared hilarity as the children made connections with their actions and the familiar story.

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