Our syllabus and curriculum documents identify sentences as a grammatical concept that is to be taught in some states of Australia as early as Kindergarten/Prep. These dice with matching baseboards are a simple way to introduce Sentences. The first photo shows a set made with pictures (10 mins on bing free art clips) for use in the first year of school to introduce a simple sentence. The idea of using picture dice is not new – an ESL consultant showed me some over 15 years ago. A maths consultant showed me how to make the dice with two milk cartons about the same time. Instructions for how to make the dice are a free downloadable (see Resources). My contribution is the matching baseboard! (see Resources)
Why the big deal about the baseboard? After you have introduced the dice to the whole class and taught them how to roll and give the sentence, the dice can be added to your repertoire of independent activities – the baseboard ensures that students are making and saying correctly formed sentences.
After everyone is comfortable with sentences that are statements you can move onto commands. The set in the photograph are particularly special and a complete ‘one off’ given to me by a young Kinder teacher in appreciation of my visits to engage and distract some of her more exciteable little ones. If you play with these command dice you can be directed to ‘Converse joyfully in New York’. For more routine sets of recount and command dice you can look in Practical and Purposeful Literacy Strategies.