Tuesday, 30 June 2015

Save Your Plastic Bottles

Any regular readers of my blog would know that I hate throwing away anything and love to repurpose and recycle everything.
Every time we finish a bottle of juice at home, I wash the bottle and put it in my garage. Luckily, I have a big garage and a patient husband!! When I get to 20, I take them to school and use them for something. I have written other blog posts about recycling plastic bottles in the past. 

I set out to make something that didn't eventuate, but this activity shows you that the learning that goes on in the process is more important than the finished product.

I numbered the bottles and lids from 1-20. 
This was a great maths activity...
-The children had to identify and match the numbers on the bottles to the lids
-They counted the bottles 
-Put them in order on the floor
-Chose their favourite number
-Talked about the numbers

This was a great fine motor activity...
-The children used spoons and funnels for rice
-Used their fingers to put pom poms, match sticks, straws and small pieces of paper in the narrow bottle opening
-Screwed the lids on the bottles,

This was a great language activity...
-We played our shakers to many different songs, danced with them, and experimented with tempo
-We sat in a circle and thought of many different things to do with our bottles....looked through them, held them behind our backs, put them on different body parts and balanced them on our hands....etc....

I originally collected the bottles to make a bowling pins for a bowling game. That didn't eventuate as the children wanted to take their number bottles home before we had a chance.
Simply filling the bottles would have been a successful and fun activity. 
It goes to show that sometimes the simplest activities are the best!!

Start saving your plastic bottles!

Tuesday, 23 June 2015

Making Prints

I love providing my class with different multi-sensory materials and letting them explore the possibilities. These open-ended ideas give children the opportunity to freely experiment with prints, patterns, colours, shape and form. Activities such as these promote problem solving, fine and gross motor skills and communication skills. Children need space to test and explore their creativity and as a result learn so many valuable skills and concepts. 

I find the children are always very keen to get stuck into these activities.

Printing with spiky balls...

Printing with golf balls...

Making tyre prints with toy cars....

Animal footprints.....

and printing with our hands!!!

Until next week- happy printing.

Monday, 15 June 2015

Learning The Alphabet Through Play

Teaching the alphabet can be done in many interesting, stimulating and fun ways. The more engaging the activity, the more likely the children are to participate and learn. At school we sing the alphabet song, talk, model, read alphabet books, display the alphabet, the list goes on and on......
Here are a few fun alphabet activities your children will love.

Alphabet Soup:

Alphabet Magnets:

Alphabet Playdough:

Get creative!!

Monday, 8 June 2015

Sorting Numbers

Here's a quick sorting activity that will help young children learn and recognise the numbers 1-5. 
I set up this activity on the wonder table where I display and store a large range of natural materials for the children to look at, manipulate and play with.

I wrote the numbers 1-5 on some lovely bamboo plates and on an assortment of natural materials. 
I used pebbles, shells and little branch cookies.

The children sorted, counted and arranged the materials on and around the plates. They were carried to the playdough table and the light table to be used for various purposes.

You can use any materials you like to create an interesting, quick and relevant numeracy activity like this. Have a go at setting up a similar activity.

Monday, 1 June 2015

Seed Pod Snakes

I have a wonderful, supportive group of parents in my class that are always so willing to help out in so many ways. They all know that I am always on the lookout for natural materials to use in my class. 
Last week a lovely family collected some amazing seed pods from a local tree and brought them in for our class to use.
Not only were they beautiful to look at and nice to hold - they sounded amazing!!!
They were like little rattle snakes. We quickly got out some paint and created some fabulous snakes.

Using natural materials in the classroom helps children appreciate the beauty in the world around them. It also helps promote creativity, imagination, problem solving skills and curiosity. 

What interesting seed pods can you find in your local area?