Another working week for me but still plenty of time to play, create, explore and discover. I am lucky that my job allows me quite a lot of time to think about activities for my children at home. It’s then just a matter of making it happen when I’m there.
This sensory pit was recreated a few times this week as we all loved it. Yep, even me. I am the first to admit that I am not a bit fan of getting my hands in and squishing mushy oats, or goop or even just plain flour. I will do it when my children urge me to but the delight that I show them is not always how I’m feeling inside. Luckily, they are usually happy for me to be a present bystander whilst they explore!! But with the introduction of cloud dough this week, a new side of me came out. I loved the light, soft texture and I found it incredibly soothing to squeeze it between my fingers and make shapes only to see it crumble apart when it was dropped, or squashed. Needless to say, the kids loved it too and the best part was despite feeling messy to play with, it was easy to clean up. This is definitely going to be repeated regularly in the future.
*NB: I halved the suggested recipe and used cooking oil as I didn’t have any baby oil. This worked perfectly for us*
A few new houses are being built across the road and we often head over (once all the workman have left for the day) and play in the dirt piles and explore the bits and pieces that are left lying around. On one of the blocks is a fairly big scrap heap and we noticed these large heavy duty cardboard tube scraps under some rubble. We dug two out and carried them home to see what types of play they could be used for. Lucy decided she would like to paint them so we chose some complementary colours together and I then left her to paint away. She asked me to add to her painting so, under her direction, I added some dots in a a few different colours and then left the rest to her. It was one of the first times that I have really seen her take some pride in her work. Maybe because it was something that would have an ongoing purpose and could be useful? These tubes have been used in a variety of ways including as a didgeridoo to make sounds, a megaphone to yell to each other and a telescope to look at each other close up. But the activity that has seen the girls both occupied for significant amounts of time is as seen above. The girls started by sending balls down the shoot and watching them fly out into the basket. Lucy then picked up a stone and asked ‘can this go down?’. I didn’t need to respond with much more than ‘I’m not sure?’. She tested the theory herself and tried all sorts of objects big and small to see which ones went down easily and which did not. She quickly determined that the round objects were the easiest to send down whilst the irregular shapes of her puzzle pieces for example did not flow so easily. It was lovely to hear her talking herself though the project. Not really wanting my input but rather using me as a sounding board for her own rhetorical questions.
This road scene did not get as much use as I thought it might. We have had some troubles recently with the girls trying to run onto the road when we play out on the front lawn so I set this invitation up to see whether we could play out the consequences of running onto the road without looking etc. I think I needed to become more involved once the initial exploration had taken place or even from the beginning, seeing as this is such an important issue. Perhaps I will try again but use the scene as a prop to tell a story etc. We may revisit this during the upcoming week.
I have such fond memories of having poohstick races with my siblings and cousins when we were growing up. We found a lovely little steam nearby with gently flowing water that the girls could throw things into and then race ahead to meet them as they travelled down. Lucy tested my nerves a few times as she reached in to feel the water but she remained surefooted and confident as I trusted her to know her limits. It helped, also, that the stream itself was only about a foot deep 🙂
And, finally, my last post detailed a bird project we have been undertaking which has encouraged many birds in our yard such as magpies, house sparrows and crows but no colourful or more exotic birds. Now I know, rosellas are not exactly exotic but this beautiful couple have been to have breakfast and dinner in our backyard for the past three days and we are all super excited! They are simply magnificent to watch, even if we have to stay inside to do so. We had to do a little research to correctly identify them and we are fairly sure they are pale-headed rosellas. I can’t tell you how great this experience has been for the girls and I love the ongoing nature of it. The anticipation of which bird is coming next is thrilling!
Thank you again for taking some time out to read my ramblings. What did you get up to this week. As always, I would love to hear from you. 🙂