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Comparing Firefighter Coats

children looking at firefighter coats

About this video

This preschool class has been investigating fire safety. In this clip, the class has gathered for a group meeting. They are listening to Liam (age 4) and Jay (age 4) share some information they have learned about firefighters’ coats. The two boys are wearing replicas of firefighters’ coats. To encourage the children to observe carefully and think critically, the teachers have asked them to comment on differences between the two coats. Several children begin to speak about and point out what they notice, such as differences in color. The children who take part in the conversation use some comparative words such as darker/lighter. They also express some disagreement with each other. Melanie (age 4) in particular uses nonverbal and verbal communication to express her ideas—she consistently moves closer to Liam and Jay and points to the parts of the coats she mentions.



Andre: His buckles are orange and his buckles are yellow.

Melanie: I know something else that’s different (points). These things are different too!

Jay: No, they aren’t.

Andre: Yeah! One’s darker and one’s lighter.

Melanie: And also because yours has (moves to touch one of the coats) like a shape like that and his (points to other coat) is like a shape like that. And he writed his name on that (pointing to a place on the coat), and you didn’t write your name on that (pointing to a place on the other coat).

Benchmarks and How They Were Met

Benchmarks How They Were Met
Language Arts
1.B.ECb: With teacher assistance, participate in collaborative conversations with diverse partners (e.g., peers and adults in both small and large groups) about age-appropriate topics and texts.
In a class meeting setting, Andre and Melanie told what they observed about the coats. Andre supported Melanie’s comment about differences between the two coats when Jay disagreed with her.
Language Arts
1.E.ECe: With teacher assistance, use adjectives to describe people, places, and things.
Andre used the words “orange,” “yellow,” “darker,” and “lighter.”
8.A.ECa: Sort, order, compare, and describe objects according to characteristics or attribute(s).
Andre, Jay, and Melanie discussed ways in which the two coats differ from each other.
12.C.ECa: Identify, describe, and compare the physical properties of objects.
Melanie referred to and contrasted the shapes of the coats and other details when describing them.

About this resource

Setting(s) for which the article is intended:
  • Preschool Program

Intended audience(s):
  • Teachers / Service providers

Age Levels (the age of the children to whom the article applies):
Related Illinois Early Learning and Development Standards:
Reviewed: 2015