There has been a lot to celebrate in nursery lately. We have had Pancake Day, Chinese New Year, Valentine’s Day and lots of birthdays too!
Have a look at some of the fun we have been having…
Chinese New Year
We had noodles in the water tray. We learnt about different textures and how things change when they are cooked. We used chopsticks to pick up the noodles and filled bowls, building our fine motor skills (to get us ready to write). We talked about the foods we eat and foods from different countries and cultures.
We painted dragons. We used cotton buds to paint the details on dragons on the easel. Outside we filled a tray with water and poured in a little nail varnish to make marble effect dragons.
We read the story of The Great Race and had some races of our own in PE. We learn about the positions the animals came and learnt to put things in order.
Finally we had lots of Chinese Artefacts. We looked at a map to see where China was and talked about the other countries we knew. We talked about the objects from China and how they were the same or different to objects we might use. Miss Hulme shared pictures of when her mum went to China. We particularly liked the shapes and colours of the buildings and the Chinese writing.
We have had a lot of fun getting messy for pancake day. We made our own version of ‘kinetic sand’ to make pancakes. Kinetic sand is a little like wet sand but it holds its shape better, more like play dough. To make it we mixed 3 cups of sand with a cup of cornflour and a squirt of washing up liquid. Then we added water until it was a mouldable consistency. It was lots of fun but turned back to dry sand quite quickly so we kept adding water!
The children had lots of fun making pancakes, measuring their ingredients and asking each other how many they would like and what toppings they wanted.
We also had an even messier pancake batter mix! We mixed cornflour and water to make gloop. This made really good play pancake batter. The children had lots of fun pouring, mixing and measuring. As the texture of the gloop started to change they thought about the ingredients they would need to fix it.
We tasted scotch pancakes. We thought about our favourite toppings and made pictograms in maths to show they toppings we liked best. We tasted the different toppings and talked about how they tasted and which ones we did or didn’t like.
We also invited our grown-ups to one of our story telling workshops! We retold the story of Mr Wolf’s Pancakes using Makaton signs. Then we went back to our classroom and made a story map to take home. We also sang our Chatterbox Challenge songs that we had been learning at home.
For Valentine’s Day we had lots of heart activities around the classroom. We went on a heart hunt outside, finding hearts of different sizes and ordering them. We counted out hearts using the tweezers to pick them up and made love potions.
We made and wrote Valentine’s Cards. We cut out a heart shape then put it in the salad spinner. We squirted on a little paint then span it round. It made great splatter hearts that we stuck to our cards. Then we wrote a message inside. Some of us wrote a message and we all tried to write our names.
Then we made Valentine’s Treats. We cut orange segments and put them on cocktail sticks. Then we melted chocolate thinking about how things change when they are heated and remembering to be safe. Finally we dipped the orange in chocolate to make yummy heart shaped treats.
With the spinning hearts on our cards we also had a bit more fun with spinning and used the gears to learn about how things turned and how to make different parts move…
How can you continue learning at home?
Any celebration is a great chance for learning. Encourage children to make cards for special occasions, copying the message and tying to write their name.
You could also make decorations or presents, using scissors to help. Scissors are a great way to build up children’s strength in their fingers and help to improve their coordination.
The children were very interested in things that spin. You could look at things that spin at home and think about how they work. The wheels on their bikes and scooter, the plate in the microwave, the washing machine etc. You could have a go at making something that spins.
This week we were thinking about how things change when they are cooked. Talk to children when they are eating or when you are cooking with them. Some of the children were surprised that noodles were hard before they were cooked. See if your children know what foods look like raw. Do they know chips come from potatoes? Or the tomatoes that make up their sauce?