Category Archives: Small World

The Three Billy Goats Gruff

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The Three Billy Goats Gruff

After building lots of bridges to save the gingerbread man we decided to read the story of The Three Billy Goats Gruff. Everybody loved the story! All week the children retold the story and acted it out with the goats, on the bridge outside and at group times…

Lots of the children were inspired to produce some AMAZING home learning all about The Billy Goats Gruff …

Olivia’s beautiful Billy Goats Gruff scene inspired lots of clay work to create trolls and goats

 

We built lots of bridges with all different types of blocks and in the workshop too, we had to work as a team and test our bridge to see if it was string enough…

In Maths we learnt about the size of the Billy Goats then followed instructions to put them in different positions…

We were learning to..

  • Retell the story
  • Give the characters voices
  • Remember what happened at the beginning, middle and end
  • Solve problems to build bridges of our own
  • Work together and share ideas
  • We learnt about size with the big, middle and little goats and position as we moved the goats around
  • Mould the clay into the shape we wanted and add features

 

 

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Dear Zoo

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Dear Zoo

Last week began with lots of letter writing. The children were writing letters home and to their friends. We got out the post bag so we could deliver our letters.

In the construction area lots of children were building cages and zoos for the animals.

We remembered our story from guided reading all about sending letters to the zoo. It was called ‘Dear Zoo’. We read it at story time and then we got a delivery from the zoo!

We weighed the animals to see if they could be sent in the post. As everybody knows only animals that weigh less than a hamster can be sent in the post.

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Some of the animals were feeling a little bit poorly but luckily the vets were there to make sure they were ok.

Some of the children decided they needed to use tools to make their zoos even better.

Then they asked to build a real zoo with real tools!

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We thought about what we would need and wrote a letter to Ella’s daddy who looks after our school.

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Then we drew designs for how we wanted our zoo to look.

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We used the big drill, the saw and the screwdrivers to build our zoo. We had to work together and be very careful. We had lots of fun, especially using the big drill!

When the zoo was finished we sorted the animals to see who could live inside it.

What were we learning about? 

This week the children decided everything we learnt about. All the activities were planned because of what the children said or did. This way the children were very interested in their learning.

The children did lots of mark making. They wrote letters to the zoo and to other people. They drew designs for their zoo and talked about their pictures.

We learnt about letter writing. We made sure we said who our letters were to and who they were from.

We learnt the names of different animals including more unusual animals like flamingos.

The children had discussions about where different animals live e.g. would we find a spider in the zoo? They learnt to ask questions and look in books to find the answers.

We learnt about vets. The children took on a role in their play, asking and answering questions. They began adding more mark making to their play by writing what was wrong with the animals.

We learnt about tools. We learnt how to be safe and manage risks.

In maths we learnt the words ‘heavy’ and ‘light’ and could sort the animals. We learnt that not everything that was big was heavy and not everything small was light.

How can you continue learning at home? 

Following children’s interests at home is a great way to help their learning.  Children that don’t normally pick up a pencil will often write more if it is part of their play.

If your child likes to build encourage them to draw what they are building and talk about their pictures.

If they like to play football and other games give them a pen and paper or chalk to write on the ground and encourage them to keep a score.

Letting the children use tools in a controlled and supervised environment allows them to learn about safety. For example, letting children use scissors and talking to them about how to use them safely means they are less likely to be dangerous with them than if they never use them.

 

 

 

Alien Adventures

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Alien Adventures

After reading The Journey Home From Grandpas we thought about other journeys we might go on and decided to learn about space!

We read the stories Whatever Next by Jill Murphy and The Way Back Home by Oliver Jeffers.

We thought about what we might pack if we went on a journey to space. We made it extra tricky by only choosing what we thought were the three most important things, we didn’t alway agree!

Some of us tried to pack for an emergency and thought about how we would see if it was dark, what we would eat and how to keep ourselves warm. Some of us just wanted things to help us see the sights and some of us packed the things we would need for bedtime!

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In the story The Way Back Home the martian and the boy get stuck on the moon. We thought about how we would rescue them. Can you see how we tried to rescue the martian?

image001 Then we put the martian in the block area and tried to build steps up to the martian.

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We decided we could design a vehicle to get us to the moon. We worked with friends to draw a picture of what our vehicle would look like then labelled all the special parts.

We turned a box into a rocket like in the story Whatever Next. We added wheels and backpacks and material.

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Some of the children then had the idea to add a door and a window and we decorated our box to look like a rocket.

We made green alien slime using our favourite recipe (recipe here) and added rockets, aliens and astronauts.

We made more rockets with the blocks and we all practised writing our name, cutting out the letters and turning them into rockets, some of us had very long rockets!

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We made number rockets writing the numbers and making the marks to show how many it was. Then we put the numbers in order from 1 to 10.

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We had lots of fun learning about space, how can you continue learning at home?

Encourage your child’s interest in space by; talking about what they have learnt, sharing stories about space or finding out more information on the internet (try using child-friendly search engine Kiddle)

Encourage your child to write their name by making your own name rocket at home, or how about a name train or even a name Olaf! (snowman)

When you’re on your way on a visit somewhere encourage children to pack a bag with the things they think might be important, what do they think they might need to pack for a trip to the park? Give children a limit e.g. pack 2 things for the park to encourage them to think about what they want and what they need (Their answers might surprise you!)

Give children a challenge when they play with their blocks or Lego at home, can they build a tower that is taller than they are? Can they build a bridge?

Make some alien slime or play dough or easy peasy moon sand (just flour and water). Click the link above to find our favourite recipes.

Use an old box to make your own rocket or let it be anything you want it to. Try adding spare bits of fabric/bed sheets or pillowcases to encourage the children to be whatever they want, the material in nursery is definitely the most popular for dress-up!

 

Aliens Love Underpants

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Aliens Love Underpants

Last week the children decided to learn about … underpants!

We read the story Aliens Love Underpants.

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In the water tray we had underwear to wash and hang. We tried to match the underwear by their colours and patterns then hung them to dry.

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In the sand tray we had aliens and a mini washing line. We told stories with the aliens and pretended they came to take all our pants!

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On the washing line we counted and ordered the pants. On the back of the pants there were patterns. We sorted and matched the pants. We also learnt a new song …

 

Chilly the Polar Bear

(to the tune of 5 Little Speckled Frogs)

Chilly the polar bear,

Hanging his underwear,

Out on the Arctic washing line, to dry,

He had one pair on the line,

And hung one more out to dry,

Now there’s two pairs of polar bear, underwear

(We carried on to 5 but you can use it to count in 2s or start counting from different numbers)

 

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We made a new exploration and investigation area. We learnt about plants and caring for living things, including looking after Gary the snail!

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We worked together to complete the jigsaws and learn about how things grow…

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We had lots of fun making spinning cards for Valentine’s Day last week so we kept the spinning going with cogs in the classroom. We added more puzzles and jigsaws to help our coordination and fine motor skills.

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What have we been learning?

We have been learning to sort and match by colour and pattern

We have been thinking about numbers, matching numbers to amounts and putting numbers in orders

We have been thinking about how things work with our new puzzle area, thinking of and testing our ideas

We have been learning to care for living things including plants and our class snail

Using pegs helps to build our fine motor skills and coordination getting us ready for writing!

We learnt to listen carefully to the story, remembering the important parts and using the characters to retell the story

How can you continue learning at home?

Have fun with pegs. Pegs are great for building children’s motor skills. Opening and closing the pegs helps children with their pinching skills.

Use dolls and toys to retell stories at home

Learn about how to look after living things by caring for flowers and plants in your house or garden or looking after a pet. Give children little responsibilities like checking when things need more water.

Use jigsaws and puzzles and support children with their hand strength and coordination ready for writing

Encourage the children to help with the washing! Can they sort things by colours or patterns? Can they match their socks before they are put away?

 

 

We had so much fun learning about underpants we decided to have more pants fun next week! Come back soon to see what we get up to when we read Dinosaurs Love Underpants!

 

 

Underpants, snails and compliments…when the children choose their learning

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Underpants, snails and compliments…when the children choose their learning

This year in nursery we have made a little change in the way we plan our learning. Everything we learn about is now chosen by the children.

Each week we sit down together and think about what we would like to learn about and how we could do it. The adults collect ideas of the things the children have been talking about when they have been playing or at news time. We think about special visits or trips the children have been on and take photos of things they have brought to school or in the Share Box.

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We collect all our ideas together in our special floor book. On one page we collect our ideas for what and how we would like to learn. On the next page we save pictures of our learning and talk about what we have done. Here is our year so far…

Spiders and Building a Bug Hotel 

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Birthdays and Football

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Magic and Weather

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Snails, Apples and Leaves 

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Conkers and Bus Rides 

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Vehicles 

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Pumpkins and Fireworks 

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Bones

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Animals and Shadows

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Animals 

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Frozen and Letters to Santa 

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Christmas and Transporting 

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Santa and Polar Bears 

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Stick Man 

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Inside Out and compliments

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Story Telling (Our Favourite Characters)

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Story Telling (Acting out our own Stories)

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Pancake Day and Chinese New Year 

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Valentine’s Day

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Underpants

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Dinosaurs and World Book Day 

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Dinosaurs and Hide and Seek

imageCome back soon to see what else we get up to. Don’t forget the floor book is out in the classroom everyday, you are always welcome to come and have a closer look at what we have been learning.

Telling stories…

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Telling stories…

For the last few weeks in nursery we have been thinking all about story telling. First we used small world characters to tell stories with puppets, fairytale characters and some characters from our favourite movies. We added story stones to help us think of ideas for our story and extra props like magic wands and beanstalks.

Story Stones and Small World

Story Telling in the Role-Play Area

Story Telling in the Sand Tray

Story Telling in our new Lego Area

Small World Story Telling

Story Telling Tyres Outside

Using the Story Mats

Story Telling in Maths

 

Then we decided to be the characters in our story. We dressed up as the different characters we wanted to be and acted out stories. Then we used the Ipad ‘Storytime’ App.

We took photos and created a book.

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What a lot of story telling!

Over the past few weeks we have noticed the children’s story telling improving a lot. The children tell more stories when they are dressed up. Even the quietest children have started to give the small world characters voices and began to tell simple stories with them. When reading books the children have been looking at pictures and beginning to make up their own stories. Some children have even being trying to draw and write their own stories in the mark making area!

How can you continue this learning at home?

There are lots of opportunities for story telling at home:

When children are playing with their toys (dolls, cars, superheroes), this is a great chance to encourage children to tell you about what is happening to the characters. Encourage children to tell you what might happen next, after that and how the story might end.

Dressing up is a great way to tell stories and learn about different characters. In nursery we like to use colourful pieces of fabric for dressing up, the children love being able to turn them into any character they want (although we often have a lot of Elsas!)

When you are sharing stories talk to children about what they can see happening in the pictures. Encourage children to use them to tell their own story.

 

 

 

 

I’m Stick Man, I’m Stick Man, I’m Stick Man, that’s me!

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I’m Stick Man, I’m Stick Man, I’m Stick Man, that’s me!

Did you see Stick Man on TV on Christmas Day? Stick Man is a story by one of our favourite authors; Julia Donaldson. It is the story of Stick Man, a stick who goes on a lot of adventures on his way back to his family tree! Stick Man becomes a stick for a dog, an arm for a snowman, is weaved into a nest, is a flag for a sandcastle and even ends up on a fire!

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We decided to do our own Stick-y activities, have a look what we have been up to…

Some of the children made their own Stick Men over the holidays and brought them to school…

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We played with them in Stick Man’s forest…

Then we made some more Stick Men of our own….

We decided we would like our Stick Men to be musical and added keys and bells to make jingle sticks…

We used Stick Slime to make trees, sticks, branches and even letters…

We used the sticks with other natural materials to make transient art…

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Then we added dough and plastecine to make stick structures…

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Finally some of the children wanted to make bird’s nests like in the story…

What a busy week and what a lot of learning!

With all our Stick Man fun we learnt…

About different materials, we compared textures and talked about what we could see and feel exploring with our senses.

We planned our learning; building models, making transient art and building nests. We learnt to change our plans and ideas as we went along.

We learnt how to make and change sounds when we made our jingle sticks.

We learnt to retell the story remembering the parts that repeated – “I’m Stick Man, I’m Stick Man, I’m Stick Man, that’s me!”

We used the Stick Man forest to tell stories and learnt about other woodland animals.

 

How can you carry on learning at home?

 

Make your own Stick Man forest in your garden, what stories will you tell?

Use twigs and sticks to make your own stick family. Add old keys, bolts, washers or cutlery to turn them into music sticks!

Go on a nature walk to find twigs, pinecones and leaves to make your own nature art.

Turn other objects in your home into musical instruments a box and elastic bands can be a guitar, an empty tub can be a drum…

 

 

 

 

 

Pirate Story Telling

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In nursery we have been working on our story telling skills. There are lots of places in our classroom for us to practise our story telling.

We have our story board where we use the pictures to tell a story. We had pirate pictures but Elsa, Ana and Olaf have also arrived due to popular request!

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“Once upon a time Ana lived in a beautiful castle.” “Then Olaf came” “Then Bruce” “Oh no! He wants to eat her!” “Help me Olaf!” “Then once upon a time there was a shark” “He friends now” “Happy ever after” “The End”

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We used the story stones to make up our own stories with friends. 001 012 011 007 004 009 008 005

“Once upon a time there was a beautiful fairy called Isabelle. Then she met a duck and then a butterfly. The butterfly flew away” “They went in a cave” “Help me, I flew away” “I’ll help you!” “There was a nice robot, who was friends with the tooth fairy. They found another robot” “They lived happy ever. The End” “Happily ever after”

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We have added some more characters to our block area to encourage the boys to tell stories when they are building.

“We’re pirates on board!” “Hello Captain Chip!” “Hello Captain Fish” “Captain Fish and Chips, hahaha” “All aboard the pirate ship” “Up on the flag” “Naughty pirate, he’s escaping in the car” “The police take him, escaping in the police helicopter” “Aboard the captain” “Aye Aye mate!” “Haha mate” “Walk the plank mate” “Captain says so”

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Some of the children also wrote their stories in their writing journals while other children chose to draw maps or write special messages.

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Do you tell stories at home? 

You could tell stories about your drawings, use your toys to tell stories or dress up and make up stories.

You could even make your own story stones. All you need for story stones are flat(ish) pebbles/rocks and pens or stickers. We use the stickers or draw pictures on the rocks. We have stones with different characters, places or objects on. To make your stones last longer you can paint them with a layer of glue.

Dino Small World

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Something very exciting arrived in our classroom this week…a giant cable drum.

We had a think about what we wanted to use it for and decided that it could be a home for the dinosaurs.

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We found grass to add to the drum, then we thought they might need some extra trees and water.

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We searched our classroom for pebbles, sticks, beads and leaves to make our dinosaur small world area.

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When we finished we used the dinosaurs in our new area to tell some exciting stories!

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