Pretty Provocations


Because Pretty Provocation posts have been requested, here is a new one!

We recently changed up our room quite a bit, and one area I changed is our Mini-Atelier. I now cycle out materials that are to be used either completely independently or with the provocation set on the nearby table. Today I set out clay on the table, and put inspiring materials like the skill, peacock feathers, a drawing manikin, and small clay bunnies as well as clay tools on the shelf.

I ended up not taking a photo of it, but since the clay was a bit dry they spent most of their time adding water and trying to reconstitute the clay. This led to a lot of water on the floor. And since the drop cloth was down, the paint in the cloth ended up leaking along with the water leading to a giant puddle of green water on the floor that a younger sibling got into. You can see the start of a new puddle after we worked on wiping up the first one on the chair on the bottom right hand corner photo.


I put two buckets of bird seed along with some small treasures and scoops in the sensory table.

This essentially became a game of opening and closing the containers and laughing hysterically at the seeds flying out all over the place. The floor. The bench. Our hair. Though there was some sorting and music making mixed in.

Still lives have been huge in our classroom lately. I thought maybe they would want to mix it up and sketch their stuffed animals and puppets.

No one touched it – not even once.

This is a provocation I have done before, and learned from. I set the wire rack from the bottom of the sensory table on top, and put magnets in water in the sensory table will offering magnet wands on top. Last time? The children took the top off and lost interest in the magnets quickly.

This time I used rope to tie the wire rack to the sensory table. Score! Many children spent a lot of time trying to collect the magnets and treasure through  the wire rack. We are huge collectors in our classroom – and this was just the kind of challenge to motivate them!

I recently created a new light area in our classroom, where light will always be available to explore. There is one light table on a table with a cloth over it, and another on the floor next to the table. I placed birds and magna-tiles on the light tables.

The children primarily just took the magna-tiles off the light table and used them on the floor next to them.

So that’s it for today’s Pretty Provocations! It is really nice being able to share the reality of our day to day provocations – not just the pretty set up, but the during play and after play look provocations take on when 15 three and four year olds get to playing with them.

Share some of your before and after shots with me, I’d love to share them on the next Pretty Provocations post!   

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