Following on from last weeks transport themed activities some children asked to make car track pictures on Monday. They dipped toy cars and tractors into thick paint and then ran them along paper to create wonderful prints.
At Squirrels we believe it is important for the children to learn to mix their own paint so they can experiment with different textures, colours and combinations. To encourage this we have developed our art and craft area to give them free access to a variety of colours, textures, tools, scissors, glue, paper and craft materials. They are encouraged to self select what they might need with minimal guidance from adults. Of course this can be messy but is all part of the learning process and the children are becoming very good at finding what they need to use to make a variety of crafts and pictures. This gives them real independence and equips them with many of the skills needed for school life and beyond.
Some art activities need to be led by an adult in order to give the children new ideas and techniques. This week Helen did marble painting with some children. This involves placing paper inside a cardboard lidded tube such as a Pringles pot (other snacks available etc). You then dip a marble in paint, place it in the tube with the lid on an roll it around. The paper is then covered in an interesting print.
We have been working on different ideas for hand/eye co-ordination and developing the skills needed to hold a pencil. A group of children tried picking up buttons from cling film with some of our chunky plastic tweezers. This is a fun activity but gives us a good idea of which children find this easy and which may need us to find other creative ways to develop this skill. It must be said that some of the adults struggled with this one too as it is harder than it looks.
The children developed an interesting game in the garden this week. They made the fence panels into a prison and some of the children pretended to be police dogs, rounding up the “baddies”.
A few girls were doing each others hair using a spoon and a knife so we got out the hairdressers set and most of the staff were given a makeover which resulted in some interesting hairstyles.
Jo's sports in the hall on a Tuesday is extremely popular. She and another member of staff take the children into the large hall to play a variety of team games which help to develop skills such as turn taking, colour recognition, number recognition, physical skills, listening to instructions and personal safety. As we can only have the main hall on a Tuesday we are aware that this leaves out many of the children who do not attend on that day. We have decided that the best way to solve this is to get Jo to continue with this in the Squirrels garden on other days by taking the children out in small groups so they have the same opportunities. If the hall becomes available at any other time we will look into organising a regular session.
The week finished with pancake making/eating and tossing. The children helped to make the mixture and after we had eaten them at snack time they were given the chance to try and toss one in a frying pan.
Word we have learned this week:
Ideas to continue this week's fun at home:
Make pancakes with your child. They are very good at whisking the mixture.
Try picking up small objects with tweezers