We have been led by the children's interests this week and have enjoyed plenty of sensory inspired play. On Monday, the children found that the cars had been frozen into large lumps of ice! Their mission was to free the frozen cars! The children used various methods, including using hammers, spoons, warm water and their hands to smash or melt the ice. We observed lots of lovely descriptive language, including, "smashing," "banging, "breaking," and "melting." Once the ice was melted, we then added different colours to the water to extend the activity. One child declared it looked like, "lemonade" and then used a pipette to make bubbles in the water. This proved a very popular activity and lots of children joined in to make bubbles!
Continuing on a water theme, we also set up a potion making station this week. Using coloured water, flower petals, and citrus fruit, the children made perfumes or magical potions! They used pipettes, spoons and tweezers to add their ingredients, and then mixed these together in a potion bottle! Using scented ingredients really encouraged children to talk about 'smell' - with one child proudly declaring their potion, "smells lovely!"
Not all children like messy play - so it's important we offer sensory activities with less mess! On Friday, we set up two similar activities using shaving gel - one at the craft table with shaving gel and mark making materials and lots of mess, and one where the shaving gel was inside a zip-lock bag - this ensured children could explore the texture and feelings of the gel and experiment with mark making, but keeping their hands clean. It was interesting to see which children explored the messy / non messy version of this activity!
Following a move of furniture this week, the cozy den has had renewed interest. Lots of children used this space for role play with the dolls, for making jigsaws, and building with the small blocks. We observed as a group of children built a 'house' from the bricks and then re-enacted the story of the 3 little pigs - telling the 'wolf' they would have to, "huff and puff and blow the house down!"
Other popular activities this week have included; sharing nursery rhymes, building towers using the large Duplo and discussing height, making roads on long rolls of paper, and hunting for dinosaurs in then garden!
Ideas to continue the learning at home:
We have been discussing road safety this week - why not enjoy a road-safety walk together and talk about the importance of holding hands, stopping before crossing a road, and using eyes and ears to check for traffic! You could also look out for road signs and comment about the different shapes and colours that you see! Why not take photos from your walk and bring them into Squirrels so we can share some of what you found on your walk too?