Monday, 28 April 2014

Our New Numeracy Exploration Area

Following some recent training I was inspired to set up a play area dedicated to open-ended maths exploration through providing a range of inviting objects for the children. I sourced a wide variety of objects that would appeal to the children such as the mini beast counters through to pebbles and scales.
Rather than directing all of the children's learning I wanted them to be able to explore the things that interested them to enhance their numeracy skills. I was fascinated with the way children of all ages were using the resources. 

The younger children can often be seen lining up the different objects, counting to themselves as they do so. The seven year old immediately took to the abacus and started playing a team game where she were counted out team points and a five year old took the clock and was asking to be shown different times, deciding what he did at those times of day if he was at home.

This is an area that I plan to extend in so many ways and the possibilities for appropriate resources are endless but it so nice to see this hands on approach to a subject that used to be dreaded by many children in schools! 

Tuesday, 22 April 2014

World Earth Day 2014

I have always wanted to try shaving foam marbling and celebrating World Earth Day this year was a great opportunity to get creating. I showed the boys (both around two years of age) an image of the earth using google earth and we talked about where we lived. We started with a tray of shaving foam with some blue and green stripes of acrylic paint. 
None of the boys are particularly keen on getting themselves covered in shaving foam as it tends to stick to them but this craft involved them moving the paint around with cotton wool buds and they found this fascinating. I then gave the boys some circular pieces of paper, showing them how to press them into the foam and pull them out to make a resulting earth pattern. 

We produced some lovely earth pictures and the beauty of this activity was that all the pictures were completely unique.

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Easter 2014

We have been doing several Easter crafts and activities over the last few weeks so I thought I should share some of the fun we have had! The children really enjoyed making our tin foil covered Easter ornaments. These always looks pretty and let the children practice a number of skills from wrapping through to discussing colours and improving fine motor skills through painting on glue. 

Baking is also an activity that always goes down well with children of all ages so we decided to make some Easter nests. We lined up all the ingredients and the children took turns in measuring counting, pouring and mixing. 

 The end result was some pretty colourful Easter baskets that the children all took great pride in sharing with their parents when it was time to go home.

Tuesday, 1 April 2014

Easter Play Dough

For our Easter theme I made some pastel coloured dough using our Wilton icing gels that produce lovely vibrant colours. This activity also involved experimenting with a new type of dough made from combining just two ingredients - cornflour and hair conditioner. This resulted in a lovely soft and smooth dough. 

 We then set about finding some items for our Easter theme and with the Easter bunny in mind the children combined the dough with feathers, goggly eyes, flowers and buttons as well as the usual play dough tools of scissors and rolling pins enabling a demonstration of some true creativity!

The end result was a variety of Easter bunnies, imprints in the rolled dough of flowers and some small dough eggs.