Classifying and sorting materials or objects is largely dependent upon the ability to recognize characteristics that are the same or different between groups. Children working with everyday objects will often have a firm grasp on the similarities or differences between those objects. New materials or objects however can take some getting used to. They will need to know attributes of the objects such as their use, size, colors, textures, etc.
Give children different kinds of beans, pasta, or buttons. Ask them to sort the items. Watch what the children do and comment on their sorting “rules. “ For example, you might say, “Oh, I see you have the small buttons together, the medium buttons together, and the large buttons together.”
Think of three groups of people (such as men, women, children), foods (such as dessert, breads, vegetables), furniture (such as chairs, tables, beds), or other items. Ask children to find pictures from magazines that fit each of those groups.
Rader’s Kapili has information on biology and astronomy for children who are in third grade or older. Information on this site helps children to learn about different types of scientific classification.
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