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Learning through investigation encourages children to use critical thinking skills, ask questions, solve problems, make predictions and test ideas. It allows them to be an active participant in their own learning. Each investigation strengthens a child's language skills, social and emotional growth and physical development.

When children enrolled in the Wellsboro class of Bradford-Tioga Head Start, Inc. showed an interest in clothing, it became the foundation for learning and allowed the children to explore  social studies and science concepts, as well as, facilitate skills in literacy, math comprehension, technology and the arts. They took ownership of the study by forming a “web of investigation” to help guide them along.

The clothing topics the children wanted to investigate were features of clothing; what types of fabrics are used; how to make clothes; how to take care of clothes; and special clothes people wear for work. Because children learn best through hands-on experiences and play, they were provided with a rich environment which includes opportunities such as using a loom, sewing and making clothes, washing clothes, using technology to investigate, visiting a clothing store and laundromat, and interviewing  special guests. Families were invited into the classroom to share special skills or hobbies and by providing photographs and items to the clothing study.

An important part of any educational activity is to reflect and discuss everything that was learned over the course of the study. For the Wellsboro Head Start children this also meant ending their clothing study by tie-dying t-shirts as a celebration of their learning and accomplishments.

Photo Caption:       Children at Bradford-Tioga Head Start, Inc.’s Wellsboro classroom loved wearing their unique shirts and said tie-dying shirts was "cool and super fun!"