Week of May 15th in Reception

What a lovely week. We had Science Week and National Outdoor Learning Day on Thursday.

We kicked off science week asking the children what they thought science was all about. They blew us away. We introduced a song that covered gravity, hibernation, migration, metamorphosis, evaporation. Many of which the children have / are experiencing through their everyday play. Here is the link to the song on You Tube from The Learning Station.

  1. Joshua knows all about gravity.

  2. Most children could explain evaporation, they just didn’t know the proper scientific term.

  3. Most children knew about hibernation. Migration was a new term to many.

  4. Metamorphosis – We are learning about this ‘in the moment’ with our class caterpillars.

Science Week photos:

Gloop: The children were exploring two type of gloop, making it,  then observing how it changed and what it felt like using their senses. They explored transporting it, putting it through funnels and sieves, trying to pick it up with their hands or utensils and trying to form it into shapes, just to see what would happen.  We heard some lovely language, describing how it felt, looked and behaved in their hands.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Bubbles: Talking about how bubbles are made of trapped air, the colours the children can see, their shape, size and chasing them to try and pop them are all valuable learning opportunities. I sent a recipe home that we used for science week, it’s well worth it! Would love some pics if you are successful making even bigger bubbles.

STEM Challenge: The children (and many of the parents!) loved the STEM challenge. The children used toothpicks and sweets to build 3D shapes. We are taking a closer look at 3D shapes next week. Could you make a better one at home?

Child led learning at its best: How much water is needed to be added to make the perfect sandcastle? What is happening to the water when it is poured on the sand?

Jump Rope: What goes up must come down!!!

George P was amazing, gold medalist in the making. Think we’ll try double dutch next week…

Sorry, but my photos really don’t do the children justice, didn’t manage to capture many mid flight.

Imaginative Play:  Mrs. Kimber and I managed to salvage some car seats and bumbers from the Car Body Repair Shop in Breakspeare Rd (Thanks Issy!). They were so popular with the children, lots of lovely language and imaginative play. At risk of turning the garden into a salvage yard we love open ended resources like these. We’d love a steering wheel or three!

  More construction:

 

Next Week: We are looking at 3D shapes. Take a look at your environment, can the children spot any 3D structures, cone, cube, sphere etc.

We are collecting interesting shaped boxes. There are some hexagonal chocolate boxes if you fancy treating yourself (just in the interests of your child’s 3D education of course!).

  1. What shape is the football?

  2. What shape is a toblerone?

  3. What shape is a Swiss Roll cake?

  4. What shape is a Battenburg cake?

On Wednesday  Miss Boby and I are out of class for part fo the day each  as we have an internal moderation which is a statutory requirement, but we are on site.

Mrs. Quinn.

Week of April 18th in Reception

I was genuinely looking forward to seeing the children again this week, and they didn’t disappoint! Only a short week, but they packed a lot in.  The new trampoline was a big hit out in the garden, as was the new pizza role play. We need to blag some Domino pizza boxes, different sizes. Please also send in any photos of the children eating pizza. We heard lots of language of size, cost, time to cook and delivery times. The children then began making their own collage pizzas and pizza play dough, one white batch for the dough a second batch for the red tomato base which led to discussion about what they like to put on their own pizzas. Then the children wanted to make a real pizza together in class. The children are going to  order the ingredients online next week ‘like mummy does, …and a man delivers it.’

Getting a bit of maths into the trampoline work out:

We began reading the story of Jack and the Beanstalk and will also look at different versions or adaptations over the term. The children enjoyed exploring the magic beans, which led to some lovely sorting and counting then looking at capacity.

We observed the children trying to write their own stories.  This term we are encouraging the children to write in sentences, so please support this at home with the phonic sounds that they are learning in class.

 

In PE his week we practised team work and ball skills. Great fun, roll on Sports Day!

Save the date: June 20th Reception and Nursery are doing Sport day together.

Next Week:

We will be learning about St. George, and the Queen’s birthday.

  • We are collecting kitchen roll cardboard centres for castle turrets in junk modelling to go with St. George’s Day.
  • We are always collecting milk bottle tops.

We will be planting ‘magic’ beans to go with Jack’s beanstalk

We will be ordering food online and following the delivery process to then make pizza. Then eating it!

Take a photo of your child eating pizza and send it in.

 

Housekeeping:

We do enjoy getting email observations of home learning, keep them coming.

Keep encouraging reading and writing at home. More children are starting their second Teddy word book.

Please ensure all uniform is labelled with YOUR child’s name on it and that all children have  a PE kit and outdoor trainers.

 

Mrs. Quinn

 

 

 

 

Play Dough

The properties of play dough and other malleable materials make it fun for investigation and exploration as well as secretly building up strength in all the tiny hand muscles and tendons, making them ready for pencil and scissor control later on.

Squeeze and squish it
Roll it into small balls
Rolling pins to flatten it
Manipulating to create a representation of our world.

 

 

Poking in objects and pulling them out of play dough strengthens hand muscles and eye co-ordination. Tactile play
encourages children to e squash, squeeze, roll, flatten, chop, cut, score it, poke it! Each one of these different actions aids fine motor development in a different way, not to mention hand-eye co-ordination and general concentration.

Imagination and Creativity:

Adding open ended play items to add to the mix, play dough develops imaginative play and children can represent their world/ A jar of candles and cupcakes cases leads naturally to birthday party role-play, counting out candles and singing! Children  can make chocolates and sweets in a sweet shop, cakes and bread in a bakery, faces, creatures, animals. The list is as endless as a child’s imagination!

Calming and soothing:

As any adult who has played with dough can tell you, the effects of all that squeezing and pummeling are great for stress relief and can feel extremely therapeutic! Little children can struggle to express their emotions and using dough while talking and singing can really help that process.

Science and Discovery:

The actual act of making the play dough can lead to lots of questioning and prediction skills. Here we have some solid materials (flour, salt etc) to which we are going to add some liquids (oil, water.) What do you think will happen? What can we make? The child gets to explore and observe the changing state of materials in a hands-on way, and be filled with wonder as the bowl of unrelated ingredients comes together to form a sticky then smooth and squishy ball of dough! We often take these things for granted, but in the eyes and hands of a child that’s quite some transformation!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Maths and Literacy Opportunities:

In more focused play, play dough can be used as a fantastic way to practise letter and number work. Children can  spell out their own name, make numbers, form shapes, compare lengths/ thicknesses/ weights, count out rolled balls to match numeral cards, match and sort by colour and SO many more ideas too!

Following a recipe and instructions, counting out cups, measuring out ingredients, measuring time in the microwave, portioning out the dough amongst friends, are all meaningful and important experiences too!

 

 

 

Gruffalo Star bakers! – Nursery

As most of you are aware, the Gruffalo children have been extremely busy refining our baking skills over the last couple of weeks, making cakes, bread and even playdough to use in class. All thanks to our new oven in the classroom which Mrs Kimber very kindly collected from the shops! 

Since we have children from a large and wonderfully varying range of cultural backgrounds, we are requesting that any traditional family recipes (that you would be willing to share) relating to the cultural background of your child, or else maybe something they ate on holiday, be brought in for us to try and bake in Nursery! It would be nice to show the children that there are different recipes with different names from all over the world. 

If anyone would be kind enough to share some new exciting recipes with us to trial, you would be contributing to a great deal of learning about the wider world (plus some lovely new treats, some healthy some not, to go home after half term!) 

Catch us at the door if you could help. 

See you tomorrow, 

Gruffalo Team  

Expressive Arts and Creative Development

Expressive arts and design involves enabling children to explore and play with a wide range of media and materials, as well as providing opportunities and encouragement for sharing their thoughts, ideas and feelings through a variety of activities in art, music, movement, dance, role-play, and design and technology.

By the end of Early Years your child will develop their skills in:

  • Exploring and using media and materials: children sing songs, make music and dance, and experiment with ways of changing them. They safely use and explore a variety of materials, tools and techniques, experimenting with colour, design, texture, form and function.
  • Being imaginative: children use what they have learnt about media and materials in original ways, thinking about uses and purposes. They represent their own ideas, thoughts and feelings through design and technology, art, music, dance, role-play and stories.

How can you help?

  • Painting, drawing, colouring just for fun. Do not expect your child to draw or paint anything recognisable at first. The fun is in the creation, not in the end product.
  • Allow your child to make models using construction items (duplo, stickle bricks etc), but also from old cereal and egg boxes.
  • Allow your child to play with empty boxes – these are often as much fun as the item that was inside them!
  • Allow your child to develop their imagination. An old sheet over a table or pegged up outside can make a brilliant den and will give hours of fun.
  • Save old saucepans, tins and allow your child to make music. Sing along to nursery rhymes and pop songs!
  • Develop your child’s imagination. Act out stories; take part in role play with them by playing shops, schools, teddy bear picnics. Try and collect a few dressing-up clothes, old t.shirts, skirts, shoes and scarves have many possibilities!
  • If you are anxious about your child spoiling their clothes dress them in old ones so they can really have lots of fun without being worried.