Tag Archives: Gross Motor

Our New Workbench

Our New Workbench

We are very excited to have our new workbench in nursery! We have been using real tools on our workbench and making some great models.


First we learnt how to keep ourselves safe. We explored the tools and learnt about the best ways to use them.


We thought about how to keep ourselves safe and put hand prints on the bench so we knew how to keep our hands a safe distance away. We wore safety goggles to make sure we didn’t get anything in our eyes. There are rules we have to follow when we use the work bench and we have all been very good at listening to the rules and keeping ourselves safe.

We started off by exploring each tool one at a time and finding the safest and most comfortable way to use them.


Once we were confident we started to combine tools by cutting wood and screwing two pieces together.

Now we are more confident we are starting to plan out what we want to build by drawing pictures and making our models. This week we have made robots and cars.


We have even started to try and make our models even better by going back and adjusting the wheels to try and make our cars work.

The children’s plan for next week is to work together to build a big house for the Three Little Pigs, check back next week to see how we do…

What are we learning about?

Using the tools is a great way to build children’s fine motor skills which helps to get them ready for writing. To use the saw and hammer the children need strength and coordination. To use the screw driver they must work with control, slowly and carefully. Whenever we use the tools the children have to listen very carefully and follow the instructions to work safely. They have to think of their own safety and the safety of their friends around them and concentrate very hard. When they make models they need to try different ways of doing things and make adjustments to make it work.

Already the children are becoming more safe and confident with using the tools and we have been very impressed with what they have made.

How can you continue learning at home?

Lots of parents have asked for their children’s target to be to write their name. As well as lots of practice drawing and making marks with a pencil there are other ways to help children build up their strength and control in their hands and fingers…

Buttons and zips help children with coordination and strength in their fingers. Encouraging children to help to get themselves ready for school by putting on their own shoes and socks or trying to get themselves dressed this will all build up children’s strength in their hands and arms.

Children need to build up their big muscles in their arms and shoulders as well as the little ones in their hands and fingers so lots of climbing at the park or riding bikes helps to build these muscles.

Toys and activities like using blocks, Duplo and Lego all help with children’s fine motor skills. As they get more confident with the bigger blocks getting out smaller ones like Lego will help to strengthen the muscles in their fingers. Threading, sewing, play dough and using scissors are all great ways to strengthen finger muscles.

Lots of chance to make marks like with a tray of gel or shaving foam that children can make marks in with their fingers or big chalks on the ground outside. Using big paper helps to build up bigger muscles. Painting, colouring and drawing are all great ways to get ready for writing.


How to build a giant robot

How to build a giant robot


Last week was Environment Week so we decided to build a giant recycled robot!

First Miss Hulme and Miss Parker went to the Scrap Store to collect lots of bits and bobs to create our robot. If you have never been it is full of great ‘junk’. Check it out here.

Then we thought about how we wanted our robot to look and drew our designs…


Next we got out the clear mannequin torso from the Scrap Store and filled it with bits of rubbish to be the robots insides. We used things that would have normally been thrown away like broken lids and bits of flooring. We had to think about the size of what we were putting in to fill the robot.


Then we made his body. We added a plastic tub head and screwed tins together to be arms.

The legs were tricky, after trying cones and wire reels we decided on old plastic boxes that were going to be thrown away. We wanted our robot to live outside so we had to think about how to keep it waterproof.

The children added their own personal touches like sunglasses and a necklace…


Finally we decided it should be silver so Miss Hulme sprayed it. Look closely at his stomach and you should still be able to see his insides!

Here is our finished robot, what do you think?


Art goes SPLAT!

Art goes SPLAT!

We had a fun afternoon in our art studio today making…Splat Art!

First we squeezed blobs of different coloured paint onto our card. We talked about the colours we could see before hiding them under circles of cotton wool.


Next came the fun bit. We hit the circle with a plastic hammer and watched the paint go splat!


We experimented with tools and hitting to try and make the biggest splat!


Then we took away the circles and looked at our pictures.



Finally we mixed the paint together with our fingers to see what colours we could make.


We had lots of fun making our splatter art. Why not continue having fun with paint at home?

Try painting with tools from around the home – spoons, mashers and spatulas make great painting tools. Playing with finger paints is a really good way to explore what happens when you mix colours.

The Room That Moved… (The Transporters)

The Room That Moved… (The Transporters)

In nursery we love to transport! This is when we move things from one place to another, filling every container we can find! So many of our children in nursery love to do this you might have noticed them doing it at home too!

Does your child like to fill up bags, buckets, prams and sometimes just their hands? Do they constantly take things from one place to another? Do they hide things in a special place? Do they collect things on their travels? Are their pockets always full?

Don’t worry! We see this at nursery too. It’s a completely normal part of their development. However we know this can be challenging , especially when everything keeps disappearing!

So we had a think about how to help the children learn through their transporting. First we read the children a story about their transporting (names have been hidden!)…


The children were very excited to read a book where they were the characters. They knew they liked to move things but talked about not being able to find things to play with. They decided that they would quite like lots of bags to fill up but they would remember to put things back when they had finished. We gave the children lots of bags and sacks to fill with things. The children had to remember to use their toys once they had taken them somewhere. We talked to the children about what they were going to put in their bags.

We made a game with the bags. We packed Christmas gifts for the different characters in the Jolly Postman. We had to look what was on the picture and just put those things inside the bag.

We made Santa’s sleighs to carry things around. We had sacks for toys and had to remember to deliver them to the right people. We then had to collect things back up to take them to the next children.

We made big Santa sleighs outside using the play pod. We filled suitcases with toys to deliver.

We did lots of posting activities to make our transporting more purposeful.


We also did other activities  like carrying blocks in the wheelbarrow, dressing up as the post man to deliver letters and finding a new way for Santa to carry his presents when his sleigh broke down.

Does your child transport? You can help to move their learning on…

Give children things to help them transport:

Bags, rucksacks, suitcases, bikes, trucks, prams, mops, brushes

Let them help with activities like:

Sweeping, vacuuming, tidying up, helping with unpacking shopping, writing and posting letters

Children will enjoy visits:

To the post box, the shops, transport museums, riding on buses and trams





Balance Bikes

Balance Bikes

We have had something new and very exciting in nursery…balance bikes! They are like normal bikes but without pedals. We used the handle bars to steer and control them with our feet.

We even practised using the balance bikes outside.

In the hall we learnt how to move the bikes in different ways using our feet. We had races and competitions riding all the way from one side of the hall to the other. We used the bench to practice moving using our feet.

On the balance bikes we learn about control and coordination. We move around obstacles moving fast and slow and using the brakes. We have to control our bodies to keep our bike balanced. It was very tricky but we got better and better with each go!

Wednesday Vs United


This year in nursery there has been lots of talk about football!

Some of the children support Sheffield Wednesday and some support Sheffield United. Taela told us a story about watching Sheffield Wednesday with her dad. She then went to find out if all the teachers liked football.


We decided to go to the library and found some books about how to play football and football teams.


Then we went to play football!

First we practiced our ball skills. We stood in a circle and kicked the ball to each other. We had to look carefully so we could stop it with our feet. Then we did little kicks to our friends. It was tricky not to use our hands!


After practicing we had a match. Miss Webster’s team were Sheffield Wednesday and Miss Bibby’s team were Sheffield United. We had to kick the ball to our friends then try and score a goal. There were some good goals and lots of great saves too!


We talked about all the new football words we had learnt like dribble, goal, score and match. Then our share box came back with a Sheffield Wednesday ticket in it! The children were very excited to find out all about going to football matches.


We enjoyed learning about football

We learnt to use books to find out more about things we were interested in.

We learnt lots of new words that we can use in our play.

We learn about how to play as part of a team.

We thought about how to follow the rules when we play a game. We got better the longer we played!

We had to use lots of control to stop the ball and make it go where we wanted.

Stop and Go


After a few near misses with the bikes we had a think and decided to add a road to our bike track. We used chalk to draw a road then we added traffic lights, a crossing and a car park.


One of the children then decided the roads needed some maintenance and introduced roadworks, adding cones and a sign and sending the bikes on a detour through the car park.


Then the children took it in turns controlling the traffic. They used a sign to tell the traffic when to stop and go.


We had lots of fun on the bike track. Soon the children were making up stories and adding extra resources from around the outside area. There were trips to McDonald’s, Asda and Meadowhall! The children started using direction words to tell each other which way to go and there were no more bumps!

We love using the chalks outside. We can draw on the ground and it washes off easily. Sometimes we use the chalks to draw pictures, maps, letters, numbers or practise our writing. What could you use chalks for at home?

Superhero Fun


This week we have been having lots of superhero fun! We turned our role-play area into a superhero den!


We had lots of fun building dens, phoning superheroes, catching baddies, dressing up and using our super powers!

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We made super vehicles to help the superheroes get around. Some we pulled, some could fly and some could go super fast!

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On the easel we painted superheroes. We thought about how we wanted them to look then gave them extra powers!


We played super number splat. We had to get the different superhero numbers and say the numbers when they went SPLAT! We hit the number that cam next, thought about one more and one less and put the numbers in order.

027 072 073 051 After we had played super number splat we added padlocks to the superheroes. We then attached the keys to numicon so the children had to match the number to free the superhero!

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Everybody knows superheroes have a lot of washing to do so we did some super washing! In the water tray we quickly washed the superhero pants and socks then hung them up to dry.


We had to count to make sure we had the right number of pegs and hung them out to dry.

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We made superhero slime with bugs and insects stuck inside. We had to try and rescue them from the super slime.

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As part of our superhero training we made our fingers stronger at the dough table.We had balls of plasticine in different colours and had to use our fingers to mix them together and make different colours.

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At group time we have been doing some super learning! We thought about our favourite superheroes and made a pictogram to show the superheroes we liked best. We talked about which superhero most children liked, we counted the superheroes and we compared the superheroes.

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In the outdoor area we used water pistols to shoot at superhero numbers. The children said the number than shot it with water.

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The children built a superhero obstacle course using balance beams, tyres and climbing blocks.

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We made a superhero laser beam letter hunt!


We chose a card then searched for the sounds, we found the initial sounds then tried to find the other sounds in the word. We had to watch out for the laser beams!

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What did we learn?


What could you do at home?


Vegetables in the Mud Kitchen


We added vegetables to our mud kitchen this week.


We added parsnips, courgettes, peppers, cauliflower, cabbage, broccoli, carrots and aubergine to the tubs and pans.


The children used the vegetables to make soups and potions.

What are we learning?

We learnt and used the names of new vegetables.

We explored the textures of different vegetables.

We explored the vegetables looking at them inside and outside.

We added plastic vegetables, mud and water to our creations.

We used different tools to cut and prepare the vegetables for our soups and potions.

Mark Making Outside


This week we have been practising our mark making outside.


We had shaving foam in the tuff spot and used sticks to draw, write and make marks.


Some children chose to draw pictures and some children wrote letters and numbers.


It was lots of fun!


Then we wrote letters and words with chalk and the children traced over them with water and paint brushes.


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