All posts by Miss Campbell

Creative Clay Creations

Today in the Studio we continued our experiment with clay. We have been learning about the difference in textures between clay and playdough, as well as the difference between wet and dry clay. So, today we took our learning one step further to investigate what we can make, by adding loose parts to our clay station.

We added some buttons, wooden sticks, paper straws, corks and our clay tools and markers as a invitation to spark the creative minds of our early learners.

We used our gross motor skills to roll out the clay, using the large rolling pins. We even tried using the other end of the rolling pin to make marks and indents into the clay.

Some of us used the clay hammers to create marks or flatten the clay to make it more malleable.

We each selected the loose parts we wanted and got to work creating our model, and look what we created! A hedgehog using the wooden sticks.

Others used the wooden sticks to make candles for a birthday cake.

We also created a robot, adding detail with paper straws.

We used the corks and wooden letters to make clay people.

We worked together to share our ideas and inspire each other.

We used our fine manipulative skills to select and place buttons onto our clay as part of our design process.

We even used the clay tools and loose parts to extend our mark making skills.
We learn best when we are having fun through play.
I wonder what will be at our clay station tomorrow?

Scribble while you wiggle.

Today in the Studio Room we were scribbling while we wiggle. There is lots of activities we can do to help us on our journey to writing. The first step is ensuring  we have the gross and fine motor skills ready to hold our pencils.
We used material and scarfs and chose our song to wiggle to.

First we copied Emma’s actions moving the scarfs round and round, twisting and twirling. Then we listened to the rhythm of the music, and then we all used our own movements to control the scarfs.

Another activity we can scribble while you wiggle to is painting to music. We chose music from an orchestra and listened to the sound each instrument made and painted what we thought the sound would look like.

Was it a splash or bang, would the sound make us paint long strokes or short.

We used paint brushed but one of our children decided to use her hands to represent the sounds she heard.

Another scribble while you wiggle activity our children enjoy is using large paper and a wide range of mark making resources to mark make and use scribble streams. We chose the instrumental Encanto songs. This music was fast with an upbeat tempo and we used different movements with our pens/pencils to this music.

We enjoyed  working together and showing each other what we had created and what we each thought the music sounded like. We even used our turn taking and sharing skills. This is a great activity enjoyed by all our children from 2-5years old.

Why don’t you have a go at scribble while you wiggle at home? What do you think sound looks like?

3D Paper Sculpture Techniques

Today in the Studio Room we are learning a new skill. We are learning to make 3D paper sculptures. Today was all about creating a “fringe”

We each picked a piece of paper and a pair of scissors.
We learned that to create a fringe we needed to cut the paper half in strips, but only half way up the page, leaving a band. The higher we cut the longer the strip we created. We were very careful when using our scissors to cut.

It was a bit tricky at first to keep the band at the top and not cut the paper in half. But we soon got the hang of it and made of fringe snips in lots of different sizes of paper.

We made big ones

Middle size

and even tiny ones.
Once we mastered the technique of fringing we moved on to a new technique of rolling and folding.

We used our fringed paper to create, fringe people, robots, lions, octopus, and funny faces.

We drew on our designs then folded the paper and used glue to keep the edges together.

We were proud of our finished results. It was fun engaging with a new learning experience and seeing where our imagination would take us today.
Next week we will be learning a new 3D paper sculpture technique.


Glitter Bug

We had a special visitor at Cart Mill today! One of our nursery mum’s came to teach us all about hand washing. Eilidh brought her special germ finding equipment to show us what happens when we don’t wash our hands properly.

First Eilidh asked us if we knew when and why we wash our hands. Of course our clever Cart Mill children could tell us. “Before my lunch/snack” “when you go to the toilet.”  “If you touch anything that’s muddy” “when you blow your nose”.
Eilidh told us about Glitter Bug. Glitter bug was shy and was hiding in the bottle. Glitter bug is a special soap that shows us what we miss when we clean our hands.

When we had the glitter bug Soap on, Eilidh showed us her method of checking our hands. We put our hands in the black tent and a UV light was able to highlight any spots that were dirty.

When the UV light was on, our hands went a purple colour and we could see the white “germs”. Next Eilidh asked us to re-wash our hands and look at the difference.

We put our freshly washed hands back in the tent, under the UV light and all the “germs” had vanished.

We loved seeing the difference good hand washing with soap makes, and we learned the importance of properly washing our hands. It was so much fun! Even Emma and Helen had a turn. Thank you so much for coming to visit  us today Eilidh!

Numbers, Numbers all around.

Today in Cart Mill we went on a number hunt. We searched high and low for numbers. We found them everywhere. Some were hard to spot!  Luckily more helpers joined us on our hunt to spot some more. We discussed that numbers are all around us and why the numbers we found are important.

We found numbers on the clock on the wall. Those numbers are important because they tell us what time it is.

We found numbers on the buttons on the phone. We know that you need to dial lots of numbers to phone somebody.

We found numbers on the microwave. We know those buttons tell us how long we need to put our food in for to heat it up.

We found numbers on the stage, those numbers help us with our action songs and games we preform while on the stage.

We even found numbers on our clothes. This number is important because it tells us our age.

Numbers really are everywhere at Cart Mill. Number recognition is a great skill to have. It helps us with so many tasks, and introduces us to the importance of numbers and what they are for.
Maybe you can go on a number hunt in your house, or even spot numbers when you are out in your local area or shopping.

Sharing stories in spring

Today in the Home room was all about stories. We enjoy exploring stories together in our story area.
We like sharing stories together in different ways. We can share stories as part of a group, listening to a story being read by an adult.

When we read stories together, we are learning about taking turns, when to talk and when to listen, learning new vocabulary and sharing our thoughts and feelings as part of a group.
Today we discussed all things Spring during our story. We read about big and little nut brown hare sharing their ideas about Spring. We discussed our ideas and found out it’s “when the sun gets a little warmer” and “I know it’s Spring because it’s my mummy’s birthday in Spring”.
We can also explore stories with our friends, forming our own ideas about what the story can be about from looking at the pictures. If we recognise the book we can use our recall skills to retell the story.

Sometimes we can use visual aids to help us read a story. Visual aids such as puppets are a great way for our visual learners to interact with the story. Today the Gruffalo was helping read the story all about his adventures in the deep dark wood.

Sometimes we don’t even need a book to tell a story. We can use our imagination with different visual aids to bring our own stories to life, such as puppet shows.

We can also use role play to act out as characters from familiar stories, our become our own characters.
Story telling has so many learning opportunities for our children, it’s great to tell these stories in a way that captures the interests of our individual children.

What way do you like to share stories together at home?

Magic backpack adventure

Good morning adventurers, it’s time for another adventure. Let’s make our map and find out where our adventure will be today.

Today we will be going over the high, snowy mountains. Across the wavy river filled with sharks, snakes and grumpy fish. Into the Forest with tall trees and long grass, but watch out for those cheeky monkeys. Then finally we need to search for X marks the spot.

Our magic backpack will help us along the way. It will provide us with all the tools we need, but it’s not always what we ask for that we get. Let’s pop on our backpacks and get ready.

Off we go to find the mountains, we checked the map to make sure we were going the right direction. When we arrived we couldn’t climb the third mountain, it was too high. We reached inside our magic backpack saying the magic words “magic backpack, magic backpack have you got a ladder.” And it did. Up the ladder we climbed and on to the next spot on our map.

We asked the magic backpack for a boat to help us cross the river, but instead we got rope, wood and a hammer. So we got to work to build our own boat. We have to be quiet and not wake up those sharks as we sail past.

Time to check the map. Where to next, the forest. We had to ask magic backpack for help to climb the high trees and we got spiky shoes and binoculars. Once we got over the tree and into the long grass we had to crawl past to hide from the cheeky moneys.

We made it past, and finally it was time to hunt for the X marks the spot!
We are such great adventurers we found it, hidden in the garden. We went back to our backpack to ask for a spade to help us dig up our treasure.

Once we collected our treasure it was time to go back and tell each other what treasure we found.
“I found a chocolate sauce.” “I found golden coins.” “I found a monster biscuit.”
Time to hang up our magic backpack now, till the next adventure.  Maybe you can make your own map and take your magic back pack on an adventure at home.

Dough Disco!

Welcome to the Dough Disco.

The dough disco is a fun way for our children to combine play dough and a series of hand and finger exercises designed to improve fine muscle control.  These exercises help prepare for writing  and pencil control.

Today the children chose Let It Go for our disco song.
Our first move was “squeeze”. We used each hand one at a time to warm up our hands.

Next move was “ball it” we had to use the palm of our hands to roll the playdough into a ball.

Next was “smack it”. We had to use our hands to smack the playdough flat into our other hand.

Up next was “single fingers” we had to take each of our fingers one by one and press them onto the playdough.

Lastly we made a “sausage” we had to roll the playdough  between our hands.

Each dough disco move was in time to our music and the experience lasts as long as the song does. It’s a quick fun way to strengthen our finger muscles. It’s harder than it looks!
Why don’t you have a go at your very own Dough Disco at home.

Inspiring creations with playdough

Today in the Home room we have enjoyed spending time at the playdough station.  We have learned lots of different skills while we manipulate the dough into wonderful creations. We used a variety of loose parts to inspire our creative thought and design processes.

First we made the playdough. The children asked for purple playdough. We decided to use our colour mixing skills to make purple by mixing red and blue paint together.

“First we need blue”

“Then red”

“Look what’s happened when we mixed them together. It’s purple”

After we had made our playdough, we began to let out our imaginations flow, creating our playdough masterpieces.

“I made a sun”

”Look it’s a unicorn”

“It’s a star wars alien space ship with lasers that are flying”

“It’s a face and the dark purple is the hair”

“I’m using the stones to make a happy face”.

We have been engaging fully with our learning today, building new skills are proud to show everyone what we created.

I wonder what we will make tomorrow with the playdough?

Musical Mornings

Today in the Studio Room we had a very special musical morning. Our music teacher Lindsey came to show us some instruments and play musical games with us.
First we warmed up by standing up and singing and joining in with reindeer Hokey Cokey.
We sang a variety of other songs using our voices to sing and our bodies to join in with the actions.

We had good fun learning new songs some of us hadn’t heard before and playing new musical games.
We did sing a few Christmas songs we had already been practicing so it was nice to show Lindsey how well we have been learning our songs.

Lindsey brought some scarfs for us to use to take part in snowball dancing. We enjoyed using our expressive movements.

Then we got to choose which instruments we wanted to use from Lindsays collection that she brought along for us. There was a lot to choose from.

We played a game of Simon says, using the musical instrument. It was lots of fun and we had to listen out for the instructions.

We all really enjoyed our musical morning, learning new skills to broaden our expressive arts.
We are looking forward to next week to see what else Lindsey will teach us.