Fairy doors and other sprinkles of woodland magic… 

Just a quicky tonight… 

This morning we went for a little walk in the woods (“ahhhh can’t we take our scooters” came the cries!!!) 

They only needed a little persuasion to leave the wheels behind! 

We came across a huge tree that had obviously been uprooted in a recent storm, this made an excellent climbing frame, it was huge!  


The roots were fascinating and were a great talking point for the Kidkets! 

Imagine the squeals of pure delight as we came across this…  

    
“I knew it….there are such things as woodland fairies came the cries!” 

We then watched the fairies dancing on the leaves (the rain!) my parents used to get me to do the same when I was a little girl! 

There is something quite magical about being in a forest under the thick canopy of trees whilst it is tipping it down! We were happy to be outdoors- “A little bit of rain never hurt anyone” 

Did it?!?!? 

Advertisements

Deconstructed Role Play

I’ve had lots of people asking me what a deconstructed role play is and how it works. So here we go… 

  
I first saw the idea on an amazing blog I follow written by ABC does! If you haven’t come across his site you really must  pop its a great read for EYFS. We have used lots of his ideas as talking points in our weekly EYfS team meetings. In fact my colleagues say I talk more about Alistair than my hubby!!!! 

So what is a deconstructed role play! And how does it work? 

  
It’s basically role play that allows children to be totally in control of their own learning, for them to take ownership of their ideas, and for them to drive their learning forward with us as practitioners to help them extend their thinking with careful questioning and suggestions for higher order thinking and next steps. All of which are key to outstanding early years practice! 

  
It took me a little while to get my head around letting go… We always had a beautifully created role play, always linking to topic with key words plastered around (that the children never used) and gorgeous writing templates connected to this (that the children never wrote on- because they were our ideals and not theirs!) and went down the deconstructed route! 

  
This is simply a collection of different sized boxes. You will find yourself best friends with any delivery driver, routing through various skips and making special trips to super markets way after closing time! I have found the best place to collect locally is our “Iceland” store. They have fab boxes of all shapes and sizes which are plain cardboard allowing the children free reign on mark making and creativity. 

  
Once you are armed with your boxes, you need a space in your setting to allow your children space to create and design. I have also positioned our deconstructed role play near a white board so the children can use the board to mark make and add to their ideas. I have seen some children using this board to draw sketches of their designs (this happens less frequently but the opportunity is there non the less) if you haven’t got a white board a lovely roll of lining paper will suffice. 

Then let their little minds do the rest. Each week we add a different enhancement. These could be as follows…

  • Material 
  • Rope
  • String 
  • Tarpaulin 
  • Hats 
  • Dressing up clothes
  • Masks
  • Puppets 
  • Tyres 
  • Steering wheels
  • Bamboo canes
  • Wheels
  • Sheets
  • Branches 
  • Cable reels 
  • Logs 
  • Large/small tubes 

Just as we would do with literacy and maths , we plan opportunities to model sessions in the deconstructed role play, but ensure that our children take the lead. 

  
The one rule we have is that you don’t have ownership of your box, what may have been a car in a previous session could in fact be turned into a castle in the next! 

  
We tend to replenish boxes on a weekly basis- ensuring there is plenty of scope for new design and imagination 

I always provide masking tape, scissors, cellotape, string, marker pens and felt tips so the children can turn their boxes into anything that floats their boat. 

Often I just stand back and observe! 

The observations I have collected have been second to non- the world is your child’s oyster when it comes to plain, blank boxes! Give it a go…

I’d love to hear your outcomes! 

  

B and Q wastage scheme 

I posted about this on Facebook this morning, but thought I’d also write a quick post here too! 

Did you know that you can sign up to B & Q’s wastage scheme if you are a nursery, school, scout group, brownie pack, childminder etc etc

http://www.diy.com/corporate/community/waste-donation/
Our local store required you to contact head office and then they add you to the scheme. They will then give away any products that can’t be sold within the store. Items such as wood, paint tiles, turf etc 

I guess each store differs. It’s worth a phone call though! 

I hope you are successful in sourcing some freebies which will help further your children’s development. 

Please do comment below and let us know how you get on 

Bye for now x 

Jumping in Muddy Puddles!

Jumping in muddy puddles!

I have been out of class for most of the morning, so was delighted to see my children this afternoon. I love the fact that it’s like being a minor celebrity every time I return from being out, they greet me as if they haven’t seen me for years!

During the register one kiddle begins singing “It’s raining it’s pouring” true to their word it was absolutely lashing it down! He then asks if we can go outside. I promise we can, after our maths focus time, which was investigating capacity using coloured rice (a whole new blog post- not sure I am going to be flavour of the month with our cleaner’s tonight oppps!)

Once our maths time is over, we begin to get ready to go! This still takes a little while, but I try to encourage independent as much as possible.

wellies

And we’re off… Firstly they decide to head to the puddles (of course… who wouldn’t?)  there’s something quite magical about being outside in torrential rain, knowing your hood is up, your wellies are on and all that’s to be had is a grand old time. Some children were a little dubious of the splashes to begin with, but an encouraging smile and the odd “Don’t worry, you’re covered” was all they needed. Play then developed to who could make the biggest splash, and how much of a run up do you need to create the biggest wave!

IMG_3385 IMG_3386 IMG_3387

One child then headed to the mud kitchen and sand area, and so the play then transferred to this area. I heard shouts of “I’ve found clean water”  “I’m going to make clear soup” “We need to use a sieve” “You need half a kilogram”

Before we had set off on our outside adventure the children decided they would like to build dens  so they could shelter from the rain.  We went down to the woods and found some lovely piles of willow. Whilst heading down to the woods, we looked for bears, found bear claw scratches on the trees, one little girl found some berries on the floor- she was fascinated by them, which led to a full scale search of where they came from, which animals might eat them and if they were harmful to humans. We also found a beautiful butterfly. I was so impressed to see how delicate and careful our children were. They looked intricately at the wings and legs. “It’s an insect, it’s got 6 legs” said one of my little boys.

IMG_3392     IMG_3389

Once we had collected the willow we headed back to our garden. It was still raining, we were still happy, and work on The Den was about to commence.  The children chatted to each other about how they wanted it to look. They decided that a triangle was the best shape. They told me I needed to hold them altogether, then two girls ran to get twine and scissors. Much fun was had whilst these two lovlies ran around the den winding the string round the top so we could hold it securely. It never ceases to amaze me, how strong leaders in activities like this come out of the woodwork. Once the structure was complete a little girl after my own heart shouts “We need things to decorate it” She runs inside and returns with a job lots of glitter, tinsel and ribbon! There was nothing more prefect that I could think of to decorate our Den!

IMG_3388 IMG_3390 IMG_3391

An amazing afternoon was had by all, I feel honoured and blessed to have THE BEST job in the world, and to work with the BEST customers!

IMG_3393