Wednesday, 25 February 2015

SOMETHING STRANGE IN THE GARDEN!


A chance to enjoy the sun and dry weather this week! Spring is in the air! What is this strange thing in my garden?



It has legs!



and a head!


Crazy tunnel fun in the garden!


Today's play, meets the following EYFS Prime and specific areas:
  • Physical Development
  • Expressive Art and Design

Saturday, 14 February 2015

VALENTINES DAY 2015 PART 2

A little bit more of our Valentines fun this year, We pulled out some of last years activities as these always seem to be a hit every year.



A new one for us this year was fizzy hearts! That was a lot of fun and we did it many many times. We added some food colouring to the vinegar to add some colour.





The padlocks are always enjoyed. I think it has something to do with using grown up items!



Little "C" enjoyed the sensory tray and enjoyed pouring rice over her face and feeling it roll of her nose.






Today's play, meets the following EYFS Prime and specific areas:
  • Communication and language
  • Physical Development
  • Personal, Social and Emotional 
  • Understanding the world

VALENTINES DAY 2015

This Valentines day week, we made some very simple cards. I offered the children a selection of crayons, silk rose petals, cardboard coloured hearts and different glittery valentines confetti and glue sticks. 


I wanted something that was easy for the little ones, that required some imagination and choice and not something that looked like a factory line if cards had been set up. I wanted each child to choose from the offered items and make the card as they wanted. The first thing they had to choose was what way up they wanted their card to stand. Then they were given free rein on the sticking and drawing.





This was great for supporting fine motor skills in the young children and helping to develop their pincer grip.






Lots of smiles on faces as they worked to make cards for the people they love. They told me who the cards were for and asked me to write in the cards.


We also set up a sensory tray with a Valentines theme.

  • Valentines bears
  • rose petals
  • Valentines center piece
  • Glass hearts
  • Large heart boxes
  • Scented candles
  • Heart rings
  • Rice for the base



The children liked to use the boxes as a inter stacking activity and would place the glass hearts in to a box and then place each box in to a slightly larger box until they reached the biggest. They would then offer it to someone in the house as a gift!


We made some Heart cakes!



I made some sensory bags by adding Valentines confetti and hair gel to food bags and sealing up the top with tape so they didn't leak. The little ones loved to press on these bags and watch the hearts move around the bag. This does need constant supervision as the bags can split or leak and so may need to be removed quickly.




Today's play, meets the following EYFS Prime and specific areas:
  • Communication and language
  • Physical Development
  • Personal, Social and Emotional 
  • Understanding the world
  • Expressive Art and Design

Thursday, 5 February 2015

ORGANISING TOY CARS.

Little "H" is a very active child and is not normally one for sitting for any length of time. He is very physical and likes to move around and climb. 
The one play activity that he often chooses and will become engaged in for a length of time is cars and trains. He also likes the farm set with the tractors. 

On this morning he had pulled out both the train and the car box. I helped him link the train track together in a circle and chowed him how the trains fit on the track and can drive along it. As soon as i sat back he took all of the trains off the track and sat back down. I watched what he wanted to do as it was clear he didn't want trains!

He sat next to the car box and started to reach in and pull one car out at a time. He then placed each one on the track in front of him. When he added another car he would use the new one to push the line of cars forward a few inches. This process was repeated over and over for a good 10 minutes.


Little "M" came in to the room and stood watching "H" for a while.
"Cars".......... "Cars"
She sat on the edge of "H"'s play and watched him. He looked up at her and laughed.
"M" took this as an invitation to sit with him and start placing cars on the track herself.
"H" watched her and then went back to adding cars to his line.


"M" started to add her cars to his line. " cars H..." She kept using his name and looking at him as she added the cars. He laughed again.


"M" crawled closer and started to move his cars forward.  She looked at him  as if to check his thoughts on this. He was happy for her to join in and watched her move them along the line.


After she sat back he started to add cars to the line again. They seemed to enjoy this self initiated, joint task and despite limited vocabulary, they understood each other and used babbling, facial expressions and body language to play along side each other on the same activity.



LEARNING INTENTIONS AND IDEAS FOR EXTENDING LEARNING: 
  • Observation of "H"'s interests.
  • Observe interactions and communication between young children. 

NEXT STEPS: 
    • Use mutual interests to encourage parallel and associative play.

    CHARACTERISTICS OF EFFECTIVE LEARNING:

    Little "H"  showed a lot of focus in this self initiated play activity and started his own task of lining up the cars on the track. He made it clear that he wanted help to build the track and that he did not want the trains on it. Expressing his own preferences and interests. He did this despite having very few words. He shared his play with "M" and made it clear to her that she was welcome to join him. He had it set in his mind how he wanted the cars to be placed and he lined them all up one after another. They were all facing the same way. 

    Little "M" showed some great social maturity in this observation. She did not rush in, but waited to be invited and then joined "H" in lining up the cars. She took his lead and spoke to him as she played. She showed an interest in his play and wanted to share it with him. She is very keen on "H" and enjoys his company. When he goes home she often calls for him. I think we have a lovely friendship blossoming! 


    Today's play, meets the following EYFS Prime and specific areas:
    • Communication and language
    • Physical Development
    • Personal, Social and Emotional 

    Tuesday, 3 February 2015

    FEBRUARY SNOW. THE FIRST SNOW OF 2015

    We were very lucky today to wake up to a white blanket of snow. So far we have missed out when all around us have had some. Needless to say everyone was very excited!

    As soon as the children arrived this morning we went outside and enjoyed playing in it. Little "Es" spent time using items from the outdoor kitchen to move the snow around and pick it up. She also bent down and picked up handfuls of snow. She moved it from place to place in different ways. 


     

    Little "M" kept saying "Told!" (cold) when she touched the snow. This is the first time she has seen it and was very interested in this new cold white stuff that everyone was so excited about! It must be amazing to have so many new things yet to experience and be excited about!!


    The animals in the herb garden were walked around in the snow. Making  foot prints and marks as they went.


    "X" had fun pushing the snow off things and touching items in the garden to see if the snow stayed on or fell. He span the windmill and watched as the snow slid off each paddle. 


    He asked to make a snowman. We talked about how big we thought it would be and decided that we had not enough snow to make a big one but we could make a small one. He also thought it best to make it on the log chair so that it didn't get stood on.


    We had a lot of conversations about what we could use for the face and arms. "X" went on a hunt around the garden to see if he could find stones and sticks under the snow.

    We also had many, MANY snowball fights! "X" really improved his aim after a few throws and managed to get me several times! He laughed and ran to hide every time I picked up the snow and then jumped out at me to throw one that he had made in his safe space! One snowball had a stone in and thankfully it hit the fence. This led to a conversation about safety and how we had to check the snow we were throwing.


    LEARNING INTENTIONS AND IDEAS FOR EXTENDING LEARNING: 
    • Exploring the snow and how it can be used and molded. 
    • Effects that we can have on the snow. Melting in our warm hands, compressing it to make a snowman.
    • Observing how the children choose to use it!

    NEXT STEPS: 
      • Bring some snow inside and use salt to melt it. Talk about the changes.
      • Bring snow or ice inside and place in different parts of the house. See which melts the fastest and why do we think this is?
      • "X" and "Es" love the plastic animals so we could bring some of them outside and sort out which ones are from cold climates and which prefer warmer environments.

      CHARACTERISTICS OF EFFECTIVE LEARNING:

      Little "Es"  showed high levels of interest and enjoyment in this activity. The snow was new and exciting for her and she enjoyed holding it and moving it around the garden. She often moves things around in bags and buggies and seems to have a Transporting schema forming. She used tools to help her lift and move the snow.

      Little "X" was very focused in this activity and wanted to make his snowman like his picture last week. He remembered the parts that a snowman needs and looked around for things that would be suitable. He was using previous knowledge and understanding to complete this task and adapting things if they did not work. He took part in a snowbank fight and used turn taking to make the fight fair. He realized the danger that stones could create if they got caught up in the snow and was careful to choose a good spot to make the snowballs.

      Little "M" was experiencing snow for the first time and her mum had shared a video clip of her watching the snow falling, with me. She can now say snow and spent most of her time relating new words to it." cold, wet and snow". She understood the signs her body gave her to know she was cold and wanted to go inside. She asked me to open the door. She told me she was cold and started to try and pull her boots off. Once she was warm again she stood at the playroom door and pointed at the snow. Repeating the new words she had learnt.


      Today's play, meets the following EYFS Prime and specific areas:
      • Communication and language
      • Understanding the world.
      • Physical Development
      • Personal, Social and Emotional 

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