HighScope Small Group Activities


Give a warning of when the activity will end:  “You have two or more minutes before we clean up, so finish the one you are working on now.”

Have each child show, demonstrate or describe what he or she has done; “Before we clean up, let’s start with Maria and go around the table.  Show one thing you found that would float on top of the water.”

Make clean-up a part of ending. Have the children sort materials into containers and return them to the area where they belong.

Encourage children to use the materials again at future Work Times.

The following information was shared with me by Maryann Perez, the site director of Cartwright Head Start in Phoenix, Az.  Maryann is also a HighScope Trainer.

Small Group Activity Evaluation

Small group activities have the following characteristics:


  • Are available for each child
  • Are attractive and inviting
  • Are provided for each child
  • Can be manipulated by the children
  • Are appropriate to the age of the children

The Activity:

  • Is appropriate to the age of the children
  • Is one the children have expressed interest in
  • Can be done in the time allotted to it
  • Holds the interest of the children
  • Allows more than one right way to manipulate the materials
  • Is related to one or more key experiences

The Children:

  • Are making choices
  • Are using words to describe actions are representing ideas in some way
  • Are involved with one or more key experiences interact with each other and the materials
  • Experiment with the materials to use them in a new way, are encouraged to continue this exploration at a later time, and reminded where these materials may be found in the classroom