Wednesday, April 20, 2011

PlayWatch: Creative Construction!

This post was contributed by AmeriCorps Museum Educator Cassandra Kane, who documented a great play moment that happened at the Museum today.

An avid tree-house builder, 9-year-old Matthew loves a good building challenge. While he and his friends played in Shape Space this afternoon, he ambitiously decided to erect a structure using every wooden block.

With an architect’s eye for detail, the third grader first balanced two long, rectangular blocks on top of three others. He built his four-point foundation by repeating this step three times with the rest of the long, rectangular pieces.

Then, Matthew said, he “just kept stacking.”

After connecting the base with flat, rectangular pieces, he continued to slowly and meticulously pile on blocks of all shapes and sizes, creating jumbled tiers of carefully balanced triangles, arcs, squares, and prisms. He smartly placed heavier blocks near the bottom, and one lone cylinder atop the edifice like a skyscraper’s needle.

One hour later – after overcoming challenges like a younger child wanting to sit on the base during the construction phase! – Matthew proudly stood next to his sturdy structure and eagerly asked for more blocks. I think we’ve witnessed the early work of a future famous architect!


Janice O'Donnell said...

Wonderful job, Cassandra, capturing an important - and wonderful - bit of creative play!

Cathy said...

I saw this, too. It reminded me of a house on stilts! When I greeted him, he immediately told me that his sister had helped him. He was a very gracious engineer, sharing the creative process and the credit.

Cathy Saunders, Director of Education

Anonymous said...

Love the article. Love Mathews happy smiling face gleaming with childhood pride.. My children always played with blocks and legos of all sizes and would always amaze me and anyone whom came to our home with what they had created.... Creative Play has now taken then to so many heights ... I beleive it's very important.. Yea for the Children's Museum... Great Story and well done ....