Easter Give Away 

How would you like to win a lovely “Tell by touch with clock” 

We have been given this lovely clock by the gorgeous folk over at EYPDIRECT

  

This Colourful and unusual telling the time clock comes with moveable hands and removable number pots with a different textured surface on the reverse.

The Tell by Touch with Clock is also a great early years learning resource for matching colours, patterns and counting.

Size: 240 x 37mm. Age 3+.

    The Tell by Touch with Clock is a perfect early years educational resource to support the EYFS Mathematics development area of learning within your childcare setting, it will help children practice and improve their skills in counting numbers, calculating simple addition and subtraction problems, and to describe shapes, spaces and measures.

The Tell by Touch with Clock also makes a wonderful sensory resource!

  
To be “In it to win it” all you need to do is 

1. Leave a comment at the end of this blog

2. Like and share our Facebook page  Eyfsmatters

3. Follow me on Twitter @eyfsmatters 

4. Leave a comment under the Tell by touch clock picture on Instagram @eyfsmatters 

  

Good Luck xx 
(Winner will need to pay postage) 

Linked Provision 

Here are our table top activities for this week… 

These activities are linked to our gap analysis assessment (taken from baseline at the mo) 

These activities are set up in the classroom first thing in the morning- and stay out for the first session.

 Giant polydron: it has been lovely to play alongside the children here in their construction area. Lots of children drew plans of what they were going to build/had built. It was a useful tool to have the clipboards and crayons as an enhancement  

Mark making on mirrors proved to be a real hit this week! 

  
 

Inspired by stimulating learning with Rachel https://www.facebook.com/162317827297284/timeline/story?ut=43&wstart=0&wend=1441090799&hash=-7784684924675874999&pagefilter=3

The children have loved mark making in the glitter using paint brushes or their fingers 

 

 Maths tray- squirting the numbers great for ordering, numeral recognition, counting actions that can’t be moved 
 

 Chalk and pastel shapes- we are going to attach these together vertically to create hanging mobiles (watch this space) this activity was great not only for shape recognition and colour but also for children to practice their skills of resilience. It took a lot of patience and effort to complete the whole shape 

 
M ark making using marker pens attached to cars- and colour mixing in the tough spot at the end 

 
  
Fire engine role play- the children painted the fire engine before half term. They then told me what they wanted in there! Kidlets often come up with better ideas than us!   

We keep our linked provision for two weeks, but change and adapt as needed throughout the fortnight 

Xx 

Number Patters

Now that our baseline is nearly complete, we have started some focus teaching sessions. This week we are learning the numbers 4,5,6

Each and every time we introduce a new number we show our children the numeral, we introduce the Numicon piece  

 
We sky write the number whilst using the patter…

  
0- round the face of a super hero… Is the number zero! 

  
1- a straight line down and then we’re done. That’s the way to write a 1! 

  
2- around and back on the railroad track, 2,2,2! 

  
3- around the tree around the tree,is the number 3!

  
4- down across and down some more, is the number 4! 

  
5, Hat  neck, big fat tummy

  
6- a stick and a hoop do the tricks, is the number 6

  
7- across and down from heaven, is the number 7

  
8- draw a S and do not wait, that’s the way we write and 8

  
9- a hoop and a line, is the way we right the number 9! 

We then count objects to match the number, focussing on good 1:1 correspondence. The children then go and find that amount of objects. 

Once this short snappy focus teaching session is complete, I will leave a basket of goodies out near my chair for children to investigate and develop further. I often find lots of them being “teacher” 

How do you teach number? 

It would be great to hear your ideas… Please leave a comment below x 

  

Funky fingers wk beg 12th Oct 

Ive decided to write a blog post each fortnight with our Funky Fingers activity. I hope this will be useful, but will also be a great reference for me to nip back and remember what we’ve done! 

Here’s our timetable…  

Each day one group completes dough gym… I will post a video on my FB page 

Here’s  this week’s activities… 

Sorting different types of pasta- how many can you sort in a minute?   

 Placing glass beads onto numbers 

 
Rolling dice… Building a tower with tweezers to match the number on the dice  
Water Squirters 

  
(This pic is taken from Pinterest and is not owned by EYFSmatters)

We spend just approx 10mins each day on Funky fingers. The children love it, and we definitely notice and improvement and progress with fine motor control. 

What activities do you use? It would be great to hear what you do in your setting. Please leave a comment below xx 

Linked Provision 

  
I get asked lots about our time table and planning. We have started “Table Top Activities” this year. This is linked provision using gap analysis to really develop those skills that our children struggle with. Careful and considerate assessment is done to really get to grips with what our children need to move them on in their learning. This is done purely through observation based assessment. 
  
  The activities change on a weekly basis, and are put out for the first session each morning. This session lasts from 8.50-9.40am. The activities are then packed away in storage boxes and popped under the table. 

  
On each activity is a card which details the skill we plan to cover using the resources set out. The outcome of the activity is absolutely up to the child, we are teaching the skill not choosing the outcome. There are three adults in our setting, and during table top time, each adult is stationed by a table to model, and help move the learning forward with affective questioning and focused guidance. This is also the time that we hear any readers that we have identified as “Every day readers” (this hasn’t started yet as we feel it is a little too early, and are knee deep in baseline!!) 

  

Super Heroes! 

How many of your children love Superheroes? Yep mine too… Surprisingly it’s not just the boys either- my girls are just as excited about Superheroes as the boys. 

I am a keen believer in allowing children to take the lead in their learning. I know that so many of our children love this topic and are excited about it that I need to embrace theirove too! 

I began by researching lots of different bits and bobs. Here are the different things I have found useful- they are not all my ideas I will give acknowledgements where I can but some pics I have picked up along the way and I’m not sure where they are from! 

A fantastic document I have read recently is this http://www.islington.gov.uk/publicrecords/library/education-and-skills/information/leaflets/2011-2012/%282012-03-03%29-engaging-boys-leaflet.pdf What do you think? 

   
Block play is just fantastic isn’t it, I think these are awesome designs and love the fact the children have drawn and labelled their designs. It could be good to stick pics of super heros onto the blocks to encourage this more.

  This is a great idea from @jessicawebb92 with using blocks and ping pong balls! Great for control
One of my lovely twitter friends has some great Superhero ideas on her page…  

     

Here is the link to her webpage- do pop over to say hello! 

http://rockmyclassroom.com/2015/02/24/superhero-ideas-for-the-early-years/
   
 

Kids of all ages love puppets don’t they… I found these peg superheroes and thought they would be great not only for CL but to begin a little “talk for write” I can really see my lovely lot using the peg characters and then using some speech bubbles. 

   
 

Just for fun… Here is another fab idea I found whilst googling…! These would make  great end of term photos but also great talking and writing prompts

  • Who are you saving? 
  • What super powers do you have? 
  • What would happen if you flew into the building? 
  • What will you say to the person you are helping? 

 
How about having a Superhero dress up day? Children to make and write invitations! 

  Measuring superheroes using non standard measures. 

 Make a cape for a teddy… What makes the best material for a cape and why? 

   

 These areas are not mine… But I think they are amazing! 

Great books for you book lists… 

   

  

  

  

  

 For those of you that like the look of supertato… I found these fab potato people that look great fun and again could encourage some great writing!  

   Great idea to freeze superheroes In ice

http://rubsomedirtblog.com/2013/07/super-frozen-fun/
 
Making cuffs using kitchen rolls 

  

  Love this idea… Can you climb over and under the laser beams to save Teddy from the baddies? 

   
       And of course a super hero needs a super hero Cape! We have a fab supply of all different types of Super heros! If you would like to place an order  please email me at eyfsmatters@aol.co.uk

Capes are just £4.99 each 

  
Have fun! 

Coloured Pasta

I really wish you could have seen my kitchen half an hour ago… It literally looked like we’d been burgled by the food colouring police! It was one of those moments (I’m sure we’ve all had them) where I thought “How the heck am I going to get out of this mess?”

For those of you that know me well, you’ll know I always bite off more than I can chew… Instead of just dying one lot of pasta I decided to not only make and dye spaghetti but also alphabet pasta and stars! I could literally start up a pasta parlour with the amount of pasta we have in our house at present! 

The reason being… I want to provide my children with an exciting, engaging opportunity to investigate capacity this week. The pasta will not only be a fab sensory experience but will give them a great resource to develop mathematical thinking. 

Here’s how I got into the mess I did…

  1. Cook your desired pasta (my advice, just stick to one variety!         
  2. Drain as normal and pop into a large mixing bowl  
  3. Add a glug (technical term!!) of Olive oil to coat the pasta  
  4. Now add a few drops of food colouring (I needed more than I thought I would!)    
  5. Find a little person to help mix the colour through the pasta   
  6. Lay the pasta on a baking sheet to dry!          

Et Voila there we have the worlds largest amount of coloured pasta! 

Whilst I was making the black stars it did make me think how fab this would look set in jelly as “frog spawn” if I had the energy I’d do this, but for now all I have the energy for is popping the kettle on and having a cup of tea and a nice custard cream! 

Happy Sunday Lovlies x 

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! 

  

“Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” Inspired Addition Game

I am a great believer in making learning fun, exciting and engaging for my children. We have loose topics that are based around the interests of the children, and this week our theme is “Charlie and The Chocolate Factory” Lots of our children have been talking about Charlie, so we decided to use this as a theme to hooks lots of learning onto.

The children have gone for it great guns, it’s only day two and already we’ve had lots of fab observations covering all of the characteristics of Effective Learning.

Despite having an “In the moment” kind of planning format, we also plan very carefully for our focussed sessions. Many of my followers often ask what we do, and how we do it. Each day we have a focused phonics, literacy and maths session. We plan very carefully to ensure it not a “Chalk and Talk” session, and that the children are as active and engaged as they possibly can be, whilst ensuring the learning is being firmly embedded.

In our maths focus today we used the idea of the chocolate game. I am sure many of you will have played this game at parties as youngsters, but basically you roll a dice, and if you roll a 6, you begin putting the hat, scarf and gloves on and begin eating the chocolate whilst the dice gets passed around until the next 6 is thrown.

IMG_3354

We innovated this idea somewhat, and rolled the dice twice, and added together the two numbers rolled. If we could find the total, we then began to put on the hat, scarf and gloves. The dice was then passed to the next person in the circle. If they could too roll the dice and add the numbers they could then take charge of the hat/gloves etc. It was a fantastic game to play, as ALL children we involved and engaged. Even if they were not throwing the dice, they also had to add the numbers together to check the dice roller called out the correct answer.

It was lovely to see a competitive side come out in children who very rarely show this side of their character!

Once the game was finished I talked to the children and asked them what they thought they had learnt from this game… Their answers were amazing (I have taken a picture of these answers but they said …)

We were…

* Adding

* Counting on

* Racing against time

* Putting on gloves and hats

* Trying

* Being quick

* Having fun

* Taking turns

* Playing fair

* Reading dice

IMG_3355

I love the fact that they are able to see the learning through their play and verbalise this.

On reflection of this activity, there are a couple of thing I would do differently should we play it again.

1. Smaller groups (we did it whole class, and although all of the children were engaged, it was a long time for them to wait their turn)

2. A blank dice written with higher numbers for more able

3. Use numicon to help some children who were struggling

Please feel free to use this game, do let me know how you get on