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Ideas for Early Years and Key Stage One Children
Fine Motor Fun
Lots of fun ideas using leaves, which are perfect for adding into the fine motor library of activities. Slow but sure and lots of practise.
Such a simple, easy idea that anyone can do at home. Possiblities of shape and objects are endless. Great for developing vocabulary. maths skills and for thinking about spacial awareness.
Whatever the weather, building dens is great for the whole family and a wonderful way to spend time together. An opportunity to improve team building, problem solving, resilience, determination and an opportunity to be imaginative. Dens are also wonderful for role play and developing language skills. Indoors or outdoors, always a winner!
Might be cold, but wrap up warm and simply enjoy the great outdoors. Here are a few ideas to keep the little ones entertained. Have a great day, find the learning in everything and most of all have fun!
This costs next to nothing and is a wonderful way to be creative with outdoor treasure.
A wonderful fine motor activity, using beautiful things from the outdoor environment.
Reasons to be Outside
Everyday is a good day to be outside. Why not have a go at a few of these ideas? Lots to keep children occupied.
A curious child is never bored. Instead of waiting for an activity to come along, a curious child will investigate and create their own activities. If we encourage a child to be curious they become active, independent learners. Being curious, children develop and follow their own passions and therefore it encourages them to create their own success stories. So get outside, look under stones, jump in the puddles, look at the trees, watch the ocean, gaze at the stars, question how things work, why do fish live in the sea? So many things to wonder about, take the lead and encourage your little ones to be curious. Help them be brave!
I've been waiting for a frosty day to try this and today was that magical day. Absolutely amazing, incredibly beautiful and totally enchanting. Normal bubble mixture from the Pound Shop and the bubbles rested on the grass and very slowly they froze over. They started to collapse from the top down. The complete bubbles stayed on the grass for at least 5 minutes. Lots of time to investigate and to take pictures. As they started to collapse, they looked like frozen crocus and again they remained for some time on the grass. So much learning in this I don't know where to start. I would highly recommend this, so much awe and wonder, simply fabulous! TOP TIP: blow the bubbles close to where you want them to land.
The sun is shining so why not have a go at making a suncatcher. Very simple, but adds lots of twinkle as the sun shines and it dances in the breeze.
DIY Bird Feeder
A lovely little make for the garden and an opportunity to talk about birds, what they eat and where they live. If you're out and about take the opportunity to listen and look for the many different types. Children love to watch the birds coming and going at the feeder they've made. Therefore the activity encourages talk and ongoing learning.
Why not have a go at these beautiful ice
decorations and hang them from a tree in the garden. They looked wonderful twinkling in the winter sunshine. Lots of learning in this activity, discuss how and why water changes to ice and why it turns back to water. Why use a small amount of water and not a large amount? Enjoy the weather!
Butterflies are essential for helping to pollinate many flowers and plants and let’s face it, there is just nothing as lovely as seeing several butterflies in the garden. Adding a butterfly feeder to your garden is going to help you to attract these creatures and they will do the rest. Lovely for children to make and a wonderful opportunity to talk about butterflies, what they eat, their work in the garden and how they grow. You could then read the Hungry Caterpillar ☀️ 🐛🦋🍓🍊
A lovely, sharing activity where you can make the most of the weather and the great outdoors. An opportunity for your little one to make decisions about which sticks which would work best for the frame and why; length, strength etc. Depending on age of child, perhaps a bit of trial and error frame making. The weaving frame may need some adult support with tying the corners together, as it is quite fiddly. While you're doing that, use the opportunity to talk about the shape of the frame, estimating how much string might be needed and encourage the child to measure and cut the amount needed. Enjoy weaving flowers, leaves, grasses etc into your frame. Everyone a masterpiece!
Grow a Sunflower
This activity is how to grow a sunflower. Dig deeper into the science by planting 3 separate seeds and measure how factors of environment affect growth. Give the first seed everything it needs; warmth, light and water. Second seed, don't give any water and the third seed, put in a dark cupboard, so it gets no light. Investigate over the next few weeks and talk about you find.
Take the learning outdoors and teach the time.
British Tree Leaves
Going to be a good couple of days, weather wise. So why not head outdoors and go on a scavenger hunt looking for leaves. Take a bag, bring them back and then try to identify them. Once identified ask the children to draw and label them ❤️🌲🌳🌴
A little outdoor fun which started as leaf collecting and led to so much more. Initial idea was to collect different shaped leaves and to look at the trees they came from. Think about size and symmetry, a little leaf rubbing; but the children then decided a path for themselves. Lots of learning, lots of talk, imagination and developing vocabulary.
Another activity for enjoying the wonderful weather and another which is for all ages. Due to lock down, I used washing up liquid, but if you're lucky enough to have some bubble mixture use that. Have fun!
Rainbow Bubble Snakes
Such beautiful weather, I thought I'd re-share this post. Lovely activity to enjoy in the sunshine, so I hope you have lots of fun.
Lots of great ideas here!
Mini Beast Hunt
Great family activity, whether you look in the garden or further afield if you're taking your daily exercise. Happy hunting! 🐌🐛🐜🐞🦗🕷️
Make your own Binoculars
Easy, fun idea which always entertains. Children can use them in the garden or if your out walking. You could also use them on a Scavenger Hunt
Build a Bug Hotel
A great way to get the children interested in mini beasts and exploring for themselves. Involve them in the design of the hotel, talk about the bugs they would like to see and what those bugs they need to thrive.
Autumn Scavenger Hunt
Last day of half term and if you fancy some outside .space why not embark on a Scavenger Hunt. Lots of natural treasure and beauty out there at the moment and lots to talk about as you explore and investigate. Wrap up warm and enjoy the fresh air.
Click on the link to download the resource.
Alternative Scavenger Hunt
A great activity for the weekend; an opportunity to be outdoors and to enjoy some fresh air. Lots of opportunity to develop vocabulary and to really talk about objects. As well as focusing on the vocabulary of the hunt, encourage talk with questions. Where did you find it? What is it? Can you describe it? How did it get there? Have fun, enjoy your time together!
Resource available on the link below.
Outdoor Colour Scavenger Hunt
Children love the outdoors and the freedom that it offers. Reasonable day today, so why not head outside and enjoy the fresh air. Colour Scavenger Hunts are fun and you can use as many colours as you wish. You could use a colour wheel or scribble some colours on a piece of paper as I have. Talk about the objects you find, their colour and size. When you get back home, write a label for each object. Enjoy!
Resource available, please click the link below.
Music is wonderful for children; it develops fine and gross motor skills, improves listening skills and helps develop communication skills. It also helps to build relationships between others. Whether it's using sticks, logs, pans, spoons or real instruments it's all valuable as children explore tapping, hitting, loud, quiet, long and short sounds. However the best reason for doing this activity is, it makes children smile, it makes them happy! ❤️🎵🎶
Outdoor Noughts & Crosses
I think I need to sort my grass out!
The wind has been blowing a gale and the leaves are falling from the trees. Lots of different shapes, sizes and colours. So why not get your little ones doing a little leaf rubbing. Great for fine motor skills and the for having a conversation about leaves and what they do.
Autumn Colour Sorting
Leaves, leaves everywhere at the moment and how wonderful do the trees look. The incredible colours of autumn. Why not think about data in its simplest form; comparing colour, then maybe size. Which is the most dominant colour/least dominant? How many more yellow than red? Make a simple graph.
Embrace the day, take the learning outside and enjoy the day. Today's activity is 2D shapes, which can easily be extended into repeated patterns, symmetry and once home comparing 2D shapes with 3D shapes. Always ask you little one to name the shapes, challenge whether 2D or 3D and how do they know? Have a lovely day!
Number Recognition & Matching Amounts
Matching numbers to amounts and number recognition is the basis to all early maths. Lots of different ways to do this. Chalk numbers and ask your little one to find things in the garden to match that amount - number 5, 5 leaves. I've used numbers up to 10, extend to challenge the learning.
Children learn best and secure knowledge when they keep revisiting a topic. Revisit topics in different ways and always make it 'hands on.' Today's activity requires a piece of chalk, some natural objects and some outside space. Remember to use the word symmetrical, making sure you explain how both sides need to mirror each other. Enjoy!
Great to be outside and great be able to carry on the learning. Discuss what symmetry is and then have a go. If you're using shape to demonstrate, don't miss the opportunity to discuss their names and properties. Use a mirror to prove the symmetry if you can, otherwise refer to one side being a mirror image of the other.
Perfect for a sunny day; why not try a little shadow sketching. Simple, entertaining and minimum set up. Enjoy the sunshine! 🌞
This activity is a about developing children's vocabulary and being able to recognise differences in their surroundings. Using the correct words to describe the size of objects can be a challenge for small children, so try to develop and use it whenever you can.
Symmetry is everywhere; so whether you're indoors or outdoors, why not not explore this with your little one. Children can draw the opposite side and you can use a small mirror to show how symmetry works
Beautiful weather at the moment, so why not take the learning outdoors. Use the opportunity practice number bonds, using the autumn treasure that is in abundance at the moment. Conkers, acorns, beautiful leaves, two old pots and a bit of chalk. How many ways can your little one make 10? Depending on age, practise writing the number sentences and extend to 20 if they need a challenge. Enjoy the sunshine!
Counting, Number Recognition & Addition
Number recognition, counting out amounts, creating number sentences and then practise writing the numbers.
Great fun activity and another that you can enjoy outside. Measure using blocks, a ruler or a tape measure. For younger children explain how the scale on a ruler or tape works. It can be made more challenging by asking how much more/less each person is compared to another. Have fun!
Ourdoor 2D Shapes
Embrace the day, take the learning outside and enjoy the day. Today's activity is 2D shapes; what are the names, how many sides and corners? Are the sides straight or curved? Do they have a line of symmetry? Always compare 2D with 3D shapes, why are they 2D/3D? Have fun!
Have a picnic
Garden or living room, a lovely way to spend some time!
A beautiful day to be out and about. Lots of beautiful, natural things you could have fun collecting whilst walking. Bring your wonderful finds home and be creative. Putting some maths learning into the activity, you could create symmetrical pictures and for more younger ones try repeating patterns. Enjoy the so sunshine, enjoy the great outdoors and get creative!
Make a Daisy Chain
Perfect for a summer's day, enjoy the sunshine!
Lots of fun building a den, both indoors and outdoors. Old boxes, chairs, blankets, sheets or curtains, anything you can find. Might even inspire some reading if it becomes a reading den. Enjoy!
Outdoor Scavenger Hunt
Great to be outside, so why not make the afternoon a little more exciting by searching for items that begin with a certain letter. Make it fun, something for all the family, who can find the most items. Have fun!
Resource available, please click the link below.
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