Celebrating the seasons through play can be a great way to explore what is happening in the world around us. Children can observe and experiment with the changes they see before them and the idea's to support this is endless.
As a childminder finding ways of stocking up on cheap but quality resources can be very handy. A great way of doing this is by making your own. This week I have started to build up a supply of story stones, something I have been meaning to do for a long time.
Stones ( preferably as flat as possible)
Felt tips or sharpies
water proof varnish
To start with I put a list together of all the things which remind me of Autumn. Unfortunately I had lost my stone collection so I only had a limited amount which I found in the garden. This meant I could only choose a few off the list. You could come up with your own list with your children which would be a great way helping children to think about their previous experiences and building their vocabulary.
Once you have your list you can rather paint your pictures straight onto the stones free hand or draw them with Sharpies or a similar product. I did a mixture of the two depending on how complicated the shapes were.
When you have finished decorating your stones and they have been left out to dry the next stage is to varnish them. I used a quick dry varnish which was great to get them finished quickly. Each stone needs roughly 2-3 coats on each side. This will help to prevent the paint rubbing or chipping off the stones.
We love the finished resources and I plan to make so many more in the future to link into our favourite stories and topics.
How this activity supports children's development:
Communication and Language- Listens to others one to one or in small groups, when
conversation interests them. Responds to simple instructions.
Literacy- Fills in the missing word or phrase in a known rhyme, story or game. Describes main story settings, events and principal characters.
Knowledge and understanding of the world- Can talk about some of the things they have observed such as plants, animals, natural and found objects. Talks about why things happen and how things work.
Expressive arts and design- Introduces a story line or narrative into their play. Plays alongside other children who are engaged in the same theme.
This week I took part in an Autumnal themed Google + hangout with Maggy from Red Ted Art. Click on the video link to see what we got up to.
Maggy shared her lovely owl crafts, I love owl crafts at the moment and the walnut shell owls she made look great for hanging around the home in fall. Ali from kids Chaos made a great tie dye bag from her foraging finds. Anthea from bluebearwood shared her crafty spiders which my eldest two would love to make. thefairyandthefrog explained how they made their pom poms into owls for play and story telling in their setting and Rebecca from herecomethegirlsblog had some great Autumn hand print wreaths.