It's always seemed very difficult for Mr. T to understand the concept of sorting, so we've been doing a lot of sorting the past few weeks as workboxes tasks. He's sorted coins, playing cards, and (most successfully) trailmix. It's always interesting to see the different ways that he and O Boy sort. The other day I had just Mr. T sort some leaves that we'd collected and pressed. Here's a summer of the series of questions I asked him.
"Can you put these into groups? Which leaves would be together in families?"
He put them all neatly into one pile.
I can't remember how, but I kept restating the above questions into different ways and perhaps starting grouping a few of the leaves together myself. He quickly caught on and neatly put them into groups in a circle. Interesting!
Finally we talked about it again and I emphasized thinking about how the leaves were either the same or different. He got almost all of them sorted into piles of his own creation (that had his own interesting categories - for example, he put a brown leaf in with all the red leaves because they were all dark). Good job, Mr. T! This was another example of an activity where he needed to see just a few leaves at a time, rather than be overwhelmed by a huge pile. This is the same with blocks. If he is given a whole bucket of Legos he doesn't seem to be able to sort or build with them. But given just a few he can start to play with them more meaningfully.