This week’s topic has been ‘construction’ and this has really been a lot of fun. We used miniature real bricks to build walls, towers and enclosures. Who knew that mashed potato made such a good alternative for cement! The children used new words such as; kiln, mortar, concrete and trowel. We enjoyed watching “Come outside” this week and Auntie Mabel and Pippin showed us how bricks are made. The children enjoyed exploring an indoor construction site, they used mini diggers to scoop and transport sand, rocks and various other loose parts. This gave us an opportunity to learn about safety as the children had to take charge of clearing up sand that spilt onto the floor so that no one slipped over. Again our large wooden construction set was used in the garden. The children made all sorts of different things, some had ramps for water or cars to go down, some had wheels to turn and others had spy holes to look through. Children used clipboards and pencils to draw plans and make notes. There were a lot of “Pencils placed behind ears” as children told us “My Daddy does this”. It was lovely to see the children using their imagination and also work together as a team.
There has been a bustle of ‘junk modelling’ this week. Lots of cars, towers and mostly jet packs were made. The children love sorting through the boxes etc to find just what they need and then critically thinking about the best way to attach or stick items together!
We introduced wooden clothes pegs to our loose parts, after spending a lot of time showing the children how to pinch to open and close the pegs without pinching our fingers! We added lolly sticks so that they could see what they could make. Children also used wooden slices, pegs and lolly sticks and made fences, umbrellas, windmills and haybales for the farm animals. This led us to talk about different animals that live on a farm and the windmill led us to Amsterdam when we tried on a pair of authentic wooden clogs and spoke about tulips which are grown in Amsterdam.
Spring is Coming
Our latest display board is coming together and is a bright display of spring flowers. There are “Tulips” painted with a fork, “Hyacinths ” made using a technique of rolling paper called “Quilling” and cupcake cases to make bright daffodils. This week we have planted our very own apple tree, just outside Nursery. Mr Jackson told us that hopefully next year we will have our own apples right on our doorstep!
Lunar New Year
Lunar New Year has also been celebrated, we have used different types of chopsticks, some training chopsticks to start with and then tried using real chopsticks to pick up and transport string and pom poms. Children made red lanterns that are displayed around the room. We painted paper plates red then used bubble wrap to make a yellow print on the plate before we cut a spiral. We added a dragon’s head and hung it up.
This week we have focused on Penguins and the Antarctic and have been learning many facts. The boys have looked closely at penguins, labelled them, learnt about their life cycle and also how to draw a penguin. We talk a lot about sausages when we draw, so a big sausage for the body, smaller sausages for the flippers etc. The boys have done such a good job at making them with the toilet rolls and we look forward to displaying them in the classroom.
We have read ‘Lost and Found’ and ‘Penguin Pete’ and some other penguin stories. After half term, we shall continue with penguins and so please do bring in anything related to this topic. We shall be reading ‘Flapjack and Waddle’ and continuing with more ice experiments!
This week we have also introduced money to the boys. As each year passes children seem to know less and less about the physical coins and notes. It would be a nice activity this weekend to give them some coins and see if they can name any of them, order them in terms of value or simply sort them into piles by colour, shape or value. They also enjoyed playing the ‘heads and tails’ game. We shall be revisiting money after half and adding different values of coins and continue the theme of addition in lots of practical ways. This is when some boys find it tricky; the concept of the value of a coin, rather than how many coins. The Teams assignment this weekend is to play shops. Have fun and send us the photos!