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Build & Learn is a construction set that we have developed for daycares, kindergartens, and schools.
We believe that toys should be able to endure rough play and that children should be able to move and play with the figures they build. That is why Zpiiel elements are made from hard plastic and have ball joints.
Childcare providers and clinics are already using Build & Learn to train childrens fine motor skills, memory, eye-hand-coordination, sensory stimulation, and understanding of shape and colour.
The Zpiiel Build & Learn series helps children develop their early literacy and early math skills to better prepare them for the next chapter in their lives: school. In the series you will find three focus areas: The Alphabet, Numbers and Measurements, and Shapes.
Focus on early math skills with Numbers and Measurements or Shapes, on early literacy with The Alphabet, or order the whole series for an allround experience.
While each product has a specific focus they can also be used for child-initiated play where the children decide what to build using only their imagination.
BPA, Phthalates, PVC, Toxins
If you ask a child and an adult to describe a sign they will do it very differently. An adult would start by telling you what it says on the
sign, while children would describe the colours, pictures and shapes on their. This shows how even very young children are able to
recognise shapes – long before they know letters and numbers. At the same time shape knowledge is an important foundation for
children’s later skills in both art and math.
In this material we have created four activities specifically with the purpose of improving young children’s shape knowledge. The
activities are easy to start with a small group of children and can be adjusted for the age and skills of the children. Most importantly, the
activites are fun and feed children’s natural curiosity about shapes.
EARLY SHAPE SKILLS AND HOW THEY TIE INTO MATH
Usually when you think of young children’s math skills you think of the ability to count and add numbers. However, shapes are an equally
important aspect of math. The ability to learn geometry is directly related to a child’s early shape skills but improving shape knowledge
in young children also improves their artistic skills.
This material focuses on the areas of math that revolve around shapes and patterns. In our Build & Learn Numbers and Measurements
material we have created activities that focus on the other math areas. The math skills children need to learn in regards to shapes is:
- Spatial sense
This is the most basic level of shape knowledge that children need in order to later learn geometry. It is the introduction of different
shapes, directions, size and positions. Within this area children will learn to recognise the basic shapes, their names and how to
recognise them from other shapes. This is also the ability to describe whether an object is next to, above or behind something else.
This is where children learn to connect shapes and reality. It is an important aspect of shape knowledge that children can recognise
shapes in their surroundings. This will set them up for later skills in arts as they will discover that most things can be created with basic shapes.
Children will meet problems for the rest of their lives and practising how to solve mathematical tasks will directly improve their ability to solve any problem. While working on their shape knowledge children will use and expand their logical thinking which is one of the most important skills they can learn.
A pattern is something that repeats in a logical way and can be practiced with shapes. Children will, however, already understand certain patterns from their day to day life: Before we go to bed we brush our teeth, when we come inside we take off our shoes, before we eat we wash our hands. Those are all patterns. In shape and pattern activities we improve children’s ability to understand, recognise and use patterns.
It is the combination of these skills as well as numbers and measurement that set children up with a solid math foundation. Because
of this those are the areas that the included activities focus on. This product is meant as an easy tool that you as an educational staff
member can use in your everyday work with childrens’ early math skills.
ZPIIEL AND SHAPES
Play and Learn
Children learn better when playing. They are naturally curious about as well as interested in shapes, and meeting them in their interest
and reacting to it as an adult goes a long way. The Zpiiel elements can be used both in child initiated play and in planned educational
Play with all senses
When you play with Zpiiel Build&Learn a lot of senses come into play: Children can touch, look at and manipulate the shapes.
Furthermore, they will make use of their tactile sense and be able to physically touch and feel the shapes. Building shapes and
manipulating them by twisting them lets the children learn about the different types of shapes on a deeper level.
Your imagination is the only limitation
With this product you build all shapes yourself using the building set, and you can easily involve the children in this. The elements have
ball joints which means that it is easy to change the shapes. Find inspiration for activities that improve early math skills in the following
pages. However, the elements can also be used for free play where the children build houses, animals, monsters or anything else they