Wednesday, 29 April 2015

Planting for the spring

Whilst I try and educate the children about healthy lifestyles and healthy eating there is no better way to do it than hands on growing our own foods.

This year we have planted some potatoes, beans, tomatoes and strawberries, looking at the pictures of the fruit and vegetables as we planted them. Through doing so we have talked about caring for plants as well as discussing the life cycle of plants.

The children had great fun planting and come out almost daily to check the progress of their plants. We are currently seeing some flowers on our strawberries! They absolutely love watering the plants and are frequently asking to go and do this!

Friday, 24 April 2015

Sound sorting baskets

Throughout our activities we introduce the concept of listening carefully to sounds from an early age. As the children develop I start to introduce the concept of letters and encouraging them to learn the sound that the letters make. 

In addition to being able to say sass when shown the s sound and moving their arms like a snake it is important that the children are able to hear these sounds within words, something they will draw on when they start to read and write at a later age. This was a fun activity focussing on only two letter sounds at this stage that encouraged children to listen to the pronunciation of the objects in order to decide whether they started with an sss or a tttt sound. 

It took a little practice for the children to understand the task and to truly listen to the words but we got there and they had fun exploring all the objects. This is an activity we will extend over time to develop awareness of a number of letters and sounds. 

Tuesday, 21 April 2015

Enjoying the Devon Sun

It was just too sunny to attend our normal toddler group this morning so we took full advantage of our fantastic Devon location and planned a last minute outing to Wembury Beach. There was a cool wind but not a cloud in the sky - perfect for three little people (and the others that we met there)!

As ever one of the biggest attractions was seeing who could make the biggest splash in the stream with a stone although one child sat down to see what size splash they would make! We used mathematical language to count the stones, looks at the shapes and different sizes. 

Another favourite this morning was the fishing net. Whilst the children did not catch any fish they were learning to take turns in using it as we only had one. They did not catch any fish but this did not deter their interest! Some of the children had the idea of turning the net upside down to use the pole as a tool for drawing in the sand. 

When we returned home I asked the children if they would like to paint a watercolours picture of the beach. We talked about the colours they had seen this morning and talked about the sand being underneath the water and the sky being above the water. 

Wednesday, 15 April 2015


We used the acrylic surfaces of our cat boxes as the base for our prints as they were the perfect shape and size. The children chose their colours of paint and used rollers to spread the paint out of their surfaces. 

Once the surface was covered the children used the tips of cotton wool buds to draw a design in their paint. They really enjoyed this! We had combinations of mums, dads and the children's houses as well as a dinosaur. An older child chose to draw a flower and combined several colours of paint. 

Once the design was done we lay white sheets of paper over the paint and the children had great fun pressing the paper down evenly as hard as they could.

The results were good although the plastic left a mottled effect over the paper, next time we will use a different surface to enable the children's designs to stand out more.