Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Pirates and Mermaids

Weekly readers of An Idea on Tuesday would know that we have had a long hot summer here in Australia and that many of the activities recently have revolved around the theme of summer. At school I have been looking at summer, sun safe behaviour, the beach, sea creatures, summer activities and the list goes on... 
We read the book 'Magic Beach' by Alison Lester and I decided to set up a pirate and mermaid discovery scene on the light table. You can set this scene anywhere of course, but the light table is my favourite resource. 
As usual, I made these peg people last night and fortunately they took no time at all. I just used whatever I had (It would have been better if the mermaids hair matched the clothes for colour sorting and extending the activity). The children loved them and it was very popular in the classroom however EVERY girl wanted the pink mermaid!!

Have a go at making some peg pirates and mermaids!

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Fun with Fish

Last night I bought some inexpensive fresh fish from the fishmonger for the children to touch, hold, poke, feel, examine and smell of course! The children then painted the fish and made prints. They looked amazing! They LOVED this experience and all were very keen to participate. A fabulous hands-on activity that provided soo much great learning and language.

 I covered the light table with a cheap green plastic semi-transparent table cloth to create and underwater backdrop which was extremely effective. I then placed a small tray with tiny shells and some larger shells with the numbers 1 to 10 written on them. Small plastic cups with numbers were included on the tray so the children could put the correct shell in the corresponding cup. (I saw the alphabet written on shells on The Imagination Tree and thought that numbers would also be a great idea.)



I really appreciate your comments. Thanks soo much and have a super Tuesday!! 

Tuesday, 12 February 2013

Summer Sensory Tray

Our Summer sensory tray was extremely popular today. Partly because we are having an extreme heat wave at the moment and putting our hands in the blue water was nice and cool but more importantly it provided a huge variety of play opportunities. Children were pretending to be the tiny people swimming, lying under the umbrellas and playing in the sand. It provided a wonderful platform for language development.

Two trays were used to create the Summer scene. A drop of blue dye added to the water made a crystal clear ocean. Pebbles, shells, cocktail umbrellas and little felt towels were used to set the scene.

Before long the children had collected pebbles and sea creatures from the water trolley and incorporated them in the play scene. It was really great to see the children sharing the resources, listening to each other and putting up the cocktail umbrellas (this was a great fine motor skill!) 
*Before giving children the cocktail umbrellas snip the sharp point off.

Continuing the sea theme we added turtles to the playdough and let the children make prints with the turtles. We also provided a variety of materials to print patterns on their playdough turtles.

Happy Pancake Tuesday!!

Tuesday, 5 February 2013

Sunny Tuesday

As it is very hot here and the first week back at school, we filled two water trolleys today. One outside with coloured boats and one inside to provide a home for our lovely floating fish. 

I cut plastic lids, foam lids and kitchen sponges into simple fish shapes. Alongside that was the water trolley containing rocks and shells. Within minutes the children were putting the sponge fish in the water and squeezing them out. 

A sample sponge fish.

The water trolley filled with shells and blue glass pebbles.

The children loved this activity and helped them keep cool. Simple activities like this provide great learning experiences for young children. This promotes language development, creativity, fine motor skills and even maths skills like counting and size.

The children were excited about taking home the fish to play with in their bath tonight!

They look fantastic don't they?