Summertime and the Living is Easy (Week beginning 23rd June 2014)…

The garden has been the main place of action this week. It is just lovely at the moment and the children are having a wonderful time in it looking after the plants, rolling around on the hill, playing sports, splashing around in water and giggling away in the Chimps (yes I said Chimps but you wouldn’t have known it!) ball pit….

This week our Chimps have had a scattering and posting theme running through the week. Carly and the girls experimented with current schemas and created all sorts of opportunities for the babies to scatter rice, sand, salt, flour and other substances in various containers and surfaces. They did lots of posting too and even ‘wrote’ their own letters and went to the post box to post them home. They made their own post box too, decorated it altogether and posted many an object inside. Lovely. They had dinosaurs and heuristic play in sand and they whiled away some time popping bubbles being blown by the team. They rolled shakers in paint and they had lots of tummy time to practice those physical skills. They built with water blocks balancing them one on top of the other and bending down to look at the colours in the light of the window. They made some more homemade shakers with many a different material and they played with their collection of driving sets making car noises, beeping and pretending to steer the cars.

The Howlers talked all about moving house this week as a couple of them had done just that recently. They also studied their family pictures because they have a few new recruits with some lovely new snaps of their nearest and dearest. They made very bubbly water in a big tray and painted with brushes and sponges, really enjoying squeezing the water out of the sponges and feeling the bubbles. They used water beads to make colourful paintings that look like beautiful watercolours and the also made some pretty pasta necklaces that they proudly wore. They really enjoyed playing with the strange textured moon sand and they made enormous towers out of mega blocks and knocked them over again. They babbled away and made very serious notes on the collection of telephones. They made up some surprisingly knowledgeable scenes and rescue operations with the small world hospital, ambulance, air ambulance, patients and doctors and they did some lovely paintings with cotton buds and cotton wool. They extended their first aid theme with a doctors surgery role play area where they donned their stethoscopes and managed to make everyone better. Potato printing was a success and they carefully arranged the shapes around the paper and they did other paintings by dropping balls dripping with paint and rolled them around paper in a tray.

The Baboons were really clever this week. They looked at lots of pictures of people in different uniforms and with different equipment and guessed what they did for a living – pretty impressive. They then had conversations about what they saw and how it related to themselves e.g. trips to the doctor, Fireman Sam etc. They filled a table with shaving foam and then drove lots of different cars through it, watching the patterns that were made in the tracks. They then pretended to have a car wash and washed all the little cars – they loved this activity. They had the big diggers out with sand and wooden blocks in the builder’s tray and they used the levers to work the diggers and pick up the sand and the blocks and transport them around. They looked at pictures and video clips too so they really understood the concept of what they were doing. In the garden the Baboons were practicing their ball skills this week with rackets and balls and a net to hit them over. Their hand-eye coordination really isn’t bad! In their role play area they had a castle with royal dressing up and the girls in particular enjoyed pretending to be princesses and queens. They created a bowling game out of colourful sensory bottles and really enjoyed rolling the balls and knocking the bottles over. They made a Hopscotch game outside with chalks and were trying really hard to jump into the correct boxes. The team then made a lovely game where they stuck ribbons to the floor (they called this the ‘ribbon walk’ and they had to walk/balance along the straight lines. They tiptoed along and changed direction when the team shouted instructions – clever.

Our grown up Gorillas have been talking all about the world cup (they don’t care that we lost) and different sports from around the world. Christina was mourning the day after Spain went out and was wearing her football top which the Gorillas were fascinated by, asking her all about the colour and emblem etc. They were using the diggers in the sand and transporting it around the place. They spent ages popping bubble wrap and then did some rather effective paintings with it. They made lots of flags whilst talking about the World Cup and had lots of discussions about the different countries. They even looked at the globe and pointed out the countries on that. They made their own replica food out of glittery play dough and used it to make dinner for their friends. They read stories about Owls and then had a detailed discussion about night birds and when they come out, what they eat, when they sleep etc. They used the Numicon set to practice addition and they recognised the numbers to 10 by becoming familiar with counting the holes. Lots of the children are remembering how to recognise odd and even numbers – brilliant. The Gorillas that want to are learning to sound out simple words as they get ready for school. They played a jumping bean game and they danced with and jumped over long ribbons. They practiced using rulers and stencils and talked about holding them firmly still with one hand whilst drawing along them with the other. They had lots of fun watering the plants in the vegetable patch, making structures with the mega blocks and they got very carried away making pretend cup cakes for their friends with very squirty (and messy) shaving foam.