The children in Early Years have been hard at work in the garden this week! Not only have we been protecting our new sensory garden from those pesky rabbits (our new grasses had quite the haircut over the weekend!), but we have also been looking after the birds using bird feeders and planting out our fruit and vegetable plants. Thank you to Sophie’s mummy for the donation of a bird feeder! The children have been enjoying seeing which birds come to visit. Indeed, the blue tits nesting in the bird box in the forest have certainly been making the most of it!
The children also really enjoyed tennis this week! Having had the rackets and balls out in our garden, we have been keen to refine our skills. Mr Edgeworth helped us practice the skill of balancing the ball on our racket whilst moving. Lots of the children commented on the weight of the racket making this tricky, but they did very well! They were able to draw upon their super concentration and resilience to achieve their goal.
We have seen a huge amount of engagement in children writing their own stories this week, using the Tales Toolkit format! Whether in Ash or Saplings, the children have been using their phonic knowledge to write stories of their own creations, sometimes spending the entire afternoon on them! We have had to set aside extra storytelling time at the end of each day to allow the children to share their written stories with their friends. The pride they feel upon sharing their stories is truly palpable, and very inspirational to others!
Tabby Cat has returned this week to challenge us to discover “What’s in the hat, Tabby Cat?” as we have been focusing on the word camouflage. Tabby Cat showed us a green leaf, with a green insect from within her hat and this got the children thinking about how “they blend in” with each other. We watched The Mixed Up Chameleon, by Eric Carle, and saw how the chameleon ‘blended in’ with different sceneries. The children were then set a challenge to draw a camouflaged animal of their choice… the only problem was, Mrs Lawrence couldn’t see any of them!
Speaking of animals… the much anticipated Exotic Explorers visit finally arrived this week! The children met giant millipedes, fire salamanders, bearded dragons, a chinchilla and a Burmese python. Before the visit, the children thought about all the things that they already knew about these animals, and came up with some questions to ask the Explorers, about things they wanted to find out. The questions were very thoughtful and ranged from ‘where do salamanders live?‘ to ‘what is the difference between centipedes and millipedes?‘.
Following the visit, the children’s brains were full to bursting with new facts and information! Some of the children’s favourite facts were that millipedes have 200 legs, and that there are around 270 different types of salamander in the world! We enjoyed hosting a Learning Together Morning after the visit, to share our learning with our grown ups. Thank you to all of those who were able to attend! You could really feel the excitement of the children as they shared their new-found knowledge so proudly with you all.