The children in the banana pod have been spending lots of time outdoors. The cold weather provided an excellent opportunity to learn about the different properties of water. The children could see how it had turned to ice in the cold and experimented to find out how the ice reacted to different substances such as hot water and salt. The children have also been learning how to use the tools safely. Isabel has started play on pedals with the Pre-school children. Play on pedals is a programme designed to help children learning to balance and pedal a 2 wheeled bike. The first week focusses on learning about the bikes for example being able to name the parts of the bike and describe what their function is. Week 2 focusses is safety, how to check a helmet is the correct size and is fitted securely and how to make sure your bike is adjusted to you height correctly. Week 3 then focusses on the brakes and how and when to just them. This has also sparked an interest in the other bikes during free play.
Within our outdoor environment we have been taking part in a lot of active, energetic and challenging games and activities. We have been developing our co-ordination and balance skills with ball games and rings, encouraging cooperative play and team building through-out. During road safety week we learned how to keep ourselves safe around cars and the roads, we demonstrated this knowledge and learning with a road safety walk. We used the traffic lights to cross the road and waited for the green man. Wlima our Lollipop lady helped stop the cars too, and we gave her a big thank you with our drawings.
During our time outdoors we have been taking part in a lot of role play. After making an ice cream shop we decided we wanted a cafe instead. So we turned our hut into the drive through and took turns at being customers and staff. The children developed their imagination and drama skills as well learning to play together, Cooperate and take turns. Some of the children had shown an interest in climbing and building with loose parts, so we took this into learning about ‘risky play’. The children learned how to keep themselves safe while exploring, climbing and building within the garden. As well as risky play with our loose parts we also discovered an interest in transient art, the children were learning about making art from our surroundings using natural recourses from our environment.
Our main focus outdoors over the past few weeks has been physical games and activities including ring games. parachute games, number games i.e hopscotch and obstacle courses. The children have been really keen to take part in these activities asking to re do them in different ways taking a real interest in their learning and sharing their opinions. We also turned our outdoors into a pirate island, the children made their own telescopes, hooks, eye patches and treasure maps. They used their imagination to go on treasure hunts, sail pirate ships and rule pirate island.