# Snow Day!

Hi everyone it’s Carly here, I hope you are all well !

It’s snowing! You will need to wrap up warm for this one. Here are some activities you can do in the snow:

• Build a snowman ( Who can build the tallest snowman?)
• Throwing snow balls ( See how far you can throw them)
• Fill an empty spray bottle with water (add food colouring) and make nice pictures in the  snow. Or use some paint.
• Find a stick and practicing writing your name in the snow

There is lots of learning and development that can be done in the snow,

•  You can measure how tall or small it is
•  Children are learning about facial features when adding eyes, nose and a mouth
• Can you throw it further this time? learning about distance
• Can you get it as far as that tree?
• Practicing writing your name in the snow develops literacy skills
• Gross motor skills are developed as it takes large movement of muscles to get through the tougher snow
• Weather- Is it hot or cold?
• Science- What happens when the temperature rises?

There are lots of things to do in the snow, why not make the most of it while its here. Let us know what you learned today.

Feel free to send us pictures on twitter @cartmillcentre

Have a great day!

# How far did it go?

The children have been playing with cars today and were discussing how far they could make them go.

The children explored using non standard units as a way to measure the distance the cars could travel.  They used paper and wrote the numbers 1-5 on each one.

Then they helped each other to line the paper up

Each child had a car which they pushed along the number line they had created.  They counted each piece of paper to find out how far their car had went.

This was very exciting for the children and they were delighted when their car travelled further than the last time, they became even more excited when their car travel right past the last piece of paper.

This was a great experience for discussing distance with the children.  Keep an eye out on google classroom for an activity about exploring distance.

# Measuring rainbow water

Today we have been measuring the water that melted from the ice in our garden.  Which the children had coloured with the powder paint

The children all had different sized containers. Which we discussed which one we thought was the biggest, smallest and the medium sized.  The children then measured how many cups in took to fill their container.

“mine is the biggest”

# It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas..

Our children have had lots of lovely stories to share with us of decorating their Christmas trees at home with their families.  They decided that as we have our very own Cart Mill Christmas tree growing in our garden, we should decorate it!

After much discussion, we decided that we would make our decorations a little different using some of the beautiful pine cones that were kindly dontated to us. Of course at Cart Mill we do love a  little bit of sparkle, so out came the glue and glitter (sorry Michelle!)The children chose their own colour of glitter and ribbon and worked very hard to decorate their pine cones. We then had lots of fun hanging them on our tree. Doesn’t it look beautiful!

A few of our children chatted about the decorations they had outside our houses and some had “special things” on their front door. We had a look at some pictures and decided we would make our very own Cart Mill Christmas wreath.  We had a look around our garden and decided we really needed to collect some “interesting things” to put on our wreath. The children remembered we had seen some leaves and pine cones at our Forest School site so we decided we would go foraging to see what we could find!

The children excitedly changed into their Forest School waterproofs and wellies and we set off, we were so lucky that Val and Blue decided to come with us! Our children had lots of fun foraging and found some beautiful confier foliage, ivy, rosehip and holly.  This sparked lots of interesting discussion on how ivy grows up trees “to touch the sky” and that “holly is very jaggy so you have to be careful” and that “we must  not eat berries we find in the forest” and ” we need to wash our hands when we get back” Great work boys and girls!

We were so excited to start making our wreath. We have been learning about patterns in nature and the children carefully examined all of our leaves and pine cones and spotted lots of different patterns such as “spirals”, “jaggy bits round the edges, they look like triangles” and that our leaves “have lots of different lines on them” you are so clever boys and girls!

We decided to “stick” our different leaves to some cardboard to make our wreath. The children correctly identified we should make our wreath in the shape of a circle. We decided this should be an adult job (with the children giving me some advice on how I should hold my scissors and that I should be careful). We decided to try and stick our leaves with some glue. We were able to glue on our smaller leaves but we needed to do a bit of problem solving as our conifer foliage was  “too heavy and keeps falling off”. We decided we should try to staple on our leaves. We decided this was an adult job and that the children could help by “squashing down Fiona’s hand to make them stick”. The children chose where to place our leaves and of course they decided we must have some extra special sparkle and a great big bow! We had so much fun and our wreath will look fabulous on our outdoor stage.

Finally, yes it has been a very creative week in our garden, we decided to make one last decoration. Paper chains! The children demonstarted excellent team work, sharing and fine motor skills in threading our strips of paper, glueing them together and making sure everyone had a turn. Our children were so clever to identify their own patterns by using different colours in sequence.  We decided to see how long we could make our chain and to see if it would stretch all the way along our garden. Our children proudly held onto their chain and they counted that it was 28 children long! Amazing work boys and girls.

We would love you to share any Christmas decorations you have made at home with us.

# Feeling Festive…

Welcome to December!  The children have been telling us all about their Christmas trees at home, this has sparked quite an interest in recreating their own whilst at Cartmill.

Some children have enjoyed using their ICT skills to decorate a virtual tree.

This helped to develop their hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills whilst it provided opportunities for use of mathematical language.

The children also made use of loose parts to decorate their own paper trees.  The conversations the children had during this activty were very excitable as they discussed their trees at home.

I’m sure you will agree their creative skills are outstanding!

# Toddlers Construction Day

The toddlers were asked what they would like to do today and they asked for building blocks!

The toddlers spent time talking about the towers that they built, making fences for dinosaurs and building race tracks for cars.

They shared the blocks with each other and were learning how to problem solve, t turns and were very creative with their curiosity and building skills.

Well done boys and girls!

# Block Play Fun!

Our children had lots of fun today in our garden using their wonderful imaginations to create an amazing house using our wooden blocks.

“It’s a beautiful house”

They worked together as a team to discuss where to place their blocks to make their house.

“This one is a bit heavy.” “We all worked together.”

The children discussed that “There’s lots of toys in a real house” so off they went to find some toys to put in their house.

Block play is a wonderful way of allowing children the freedom to explore, be creative and use their imaginations. Our children demonstrated great problem solving skills and teamwork when creating their house. They compared the sizes of the blocks and discussed how heavy they were to lift and how to balance them on top of each other. There was also lots of discussion of walking on the “uppers and downers” carefully so that they didn’t fall off! “Like we be careful on our stairs at home”.

# Plenty of Patterns

This week in the Discovery room we are learning about patterns. We have spotted and explored patterns both indoors and outdoors

We have been learning about patterns of colours. We have been grouping the colours then making colour patterns to copy and continue.

We also used our fine manipulative skills to to trace the patterns on the board using our fingers or the pencil. We discussed the different types of pattern on each of the boards.

We used technology to help us with our pattern recognition skills. We traced then copied simple familiar patterns on the smart board using our mark making skills.

We used natural loose parts to explore the patterns we find in our environments such as shells and pine cones. We then used these loose parts to make our own pattern.

Can you spot any patterns in your home?  Why don’t you try and make some patterns using what you can find at home or even in your garden.

# We love measuring!

During Maths Week Scotland the children were measuring each other and helped to create a height chart. We used comparative language to discuss who was the tallest, smallest and even the mediumest!

The children have continued their love of measuring into this week but are now interested in measuring by weight. We have been using the scales to find out which objects are the heaviest and have been further developing our maths skills by counting how many blocks we need to use to balance the scales.

L said, “This side is heavier.”   Then after adding blocks to the other side, C said,  “It’s the same now.”

L said, “The arrow is in the middle.”  C said, “It’s balanced!”

I wonder what we will measure next… 📏⚖️😄

# A Day in the Discovery Room

Through discovery, natural curiosity and imagination we have been exploring different ways to problem solve and construct a obstacle course and models.

“We can use these long bits to balance on”

“If the wood doesn’t fit we need to move the blocks closer”

“I’ve made a slide for the cars”

“mine has two eyes”

“I’m going to use all these to make a smiley face”

“These nails are the ears like mine”