Have all of the children sitting in a circle. Show them the picture of the leaning tower of Pisa and then ask them to stand up and lean over like a leaning tower. Lean in different directions: forward, backwards, left & right.
Explain that there are towers all over Italy and that some of them are leaning. Let's work as a team and make some of our own towers. Place four or five blocks in different areas, indicating where the towers will stand. Hand all of the children a block and explain that they can choose where to place their block however, they must wait for their turn.
Important Note: As the towers gets taller, the children might be frightened of being the “one” to make it fall over. Encourage them to overcome their fears and explain that if it does fall over, we can start again.
Use lots of excited commentary as each child has their go.
Once everyone has had a go, tell the children you are going to see how high you can go. Tell them a record number and get them to count each block as it is placed on the tower. Be ready for lots of squeals!
PROGRESSION ACTIVITY - Ask the children to make small groups of 4 or 5 to see if they can build a tower together. Give each group the same number of blocks and see what they do!