Bashamichi Campus
(Age 2 - Age 3)

Kannai Campus
(Age 4 - Grade 12)


I Love My Rainbow Shoes

Preschool March 31, 2024

Since April 2023, CGK International school has been fully implementing the International Baccalaureate (IB) curriculum. Although the program is generally intended for 3-year-olds, our school starts the program in the 2-year-old "Ocean" class.

The Ocean class has been working on the following IB unit of inquiry (UOI);

“How We Express Ourselves”

For the “Celebration of Learning” (COL) we have been challenging ourselves to create from different points of view, such as building a house for the three little pigs and making T-shirts to use as costumes. To finish up the event, everyone in the Ocean class designed shoes.

I Love My Rainbow Shoes I Love My Rainbow Shoes I Love My Rainbow Shoes I Love My Rainbow Shoes I Love My Rainbow Shoes I Love My Rainbow Shoes

This activity was during "bilingual time" (English and Japanese).
First, we read “Pete the Cat I Love My White Shoes” together. This popular children's story features a cat named Pete, who wears pure white shoes. Pete loves his white shoes! The story is about Pete how steps on a variety of things and his pure white shoes change color.

I Love My Rainbow Shoes

After reading the story, we had a role-playing game.

When I, (playing the customer) go to buy rainbow-colored sneakers, there are only pure white sneakers for sale! They catch my eye so I buy them, but then I remember that I was looking for rainbow-colored shoes. So, I think, "What should I do? I bought the wrong ones...". While I’m wondering what to do about the problem, the Ocean class children come up with a helpful idea; "We can paint them!"

I Love My Rainbow Shoes I Love My Rainbow Shoes

Although the idea of painting white shoes "rainbow colors" seems new, it is actually connected to what the children learned in the IB inquiry unit. As a matter of fact, we used fabric paints earlier when making our T-shirts. The children remembered painting T-shirt material, and with the knowledge they gained from that experience they got the idea that they could paint shoes as well. The association led to practical applications.

I Love My Rainbow Shoes I Love My Rainbow Shoes

So, its a good idea! We decided to give it a try. First, we have a flat (2D) sheet we can use to decide what we want our shoes to look like. This would seem like just coloring if you didn't think about the connection between the activities before and after. It's a great activity to design on 2D and then later make it in 3D. The students experience using markers instead of paint to draw lines, patterns and to fill in colors. Then, using paint, they let their imaginations run wild, thinking about what colors to paint on the shoes. Its not always necessary to actually use the 2D design when creating the 3D object, but designing in 2D first while thinking about 3D can help develop imagination and creativity.

I Love My Rainbow Shoes I Love My Rainbow Shoes I Love My Rainbow Shoes I Love My Rainbow Shoes

Now, it's time to paint the actual shoes! There is only one pair of real shoes. So, the class though about how everyone could have a chance to paint them. By being considerate and thinking about how "if one person paints everything, there will be no space for the others" etc., the children learn to foster respect for each other.

I Love My Rainbow Shoes

Children choose their favorite colors from a wide variety of colors, paint them as they are or mix them together, and enjoy other adventures as they try to create what they imagined.

Painting on a 3D surface rather than a 2D surface, the children notice some extra areas they couldn't see on the paper, as well as areas that are difficult to paint. By doing something beyond coloring on paper, the children's spatial awareness is activated and their creativity stimulated by seeing their imagination turn into reality.

I Love My Rainbow Shoes I Love My Rainbow Shoes I Love My Rainbow Shoes

When the children see the finished shoes, they had painted together, they say: "Wow, they are beautiful! Rainbow shoes!" They are very happy with the finished product.

I Love My Rainbow Shoes

For me, these shoes are a treasure that I now wear every day! Thank you everyone!

I Love My Rainbow Shoes

Author Profile

Monami  -  Preschool Teacher  (Japan)JAPAN

Bilingual nursery teacher (hoikushi) at CGK International School - Preschool.
Has experience studying and homestaying in New Zealand, Australia and England.

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