Friday, 24 June 2016

Storyboard cut outs

These fantastic story board cut outs are from Primary Treasure Chest.  I have used these quite a few times with the families I work with in the following ways after printing and cutting them out:

  • Made story stones - After cutting them out, I glued them to some pebbles that were not too heavy.  The children could use them to make up their own story using various stones from different themes as well as finding them hidden in the sand or similar
  • Made story cubes - Using the dice template and enlarging it on the photocopier, I then glues a selection of pictures to each side.  The children then roll the dice to make up their story
  • Storyboards - After laminating the characters, the children made background story boards to use with their characters to tell a story
  • Made snap cards - Print, cut out, stick to pre cut card pieces which are the same size, laminate and then you have a set of snap / matching cards

Make your own dice

It's always good to have a spare dice to play your games.  Here are some great templates to make your own dice.  Free to download.  

You could also use them to make a nursery rhyme dice to use with your little one.  Cut out some characters from some of your favourite nursery rhymes and stick to each side.  Let your little one roll it to decide what rhyme you are going to sing together.  You could also add some soft toy props to bring the rhymes alive......

Image taken from Pinterest

Dinosaur snap cards

This is a really cute printout to make some Dinosaur snap cards.  There are two pages to print out plus lots more ideas for makes, puzzles and games to keep your little ones busy.

Animal memory game

Here is a quick game that can be printed and laminated to be used time and time again.  You could also make something similar with photographs or pictures from a magazine and personalise it your child's interests.

Speedy Spider game

Well it wont be long before the Summer holidays are here.  No matter what we plan, make and do we will most probably here those magic words......I'm bored!

So...... Im on a mission to find some free printout games that you can make and use time and time again.

This 'Speedy Spider' game is a fab way to get your children involved.  Click on the link below which will take you to the fabulous Spinning Tots website where you can download and print it for free, including the instructions on how to play!

Sunday, 19 June 2016

Top talking tips for parents

Top Talking Tips for parents - Early Years

This is fantastic information for parents to support their children's communication skills within the early years.

Scroll down to the pink working with parents tab and click on Top Talking Tips for parents

In this section you will also find the link for 'Through the eyes of a child'. 

Through the eyes of a child:

The Communication trust have produced 4 films to help parents encourage their children's communication development.
Narrated by comedian Kathy Burke, the films are full of useful advice on how parents can encourage their child to talk and interact with them.
There are 4 films, divided into age group, for parents who have children up to the age of 3.

Summer Talk

This is a fantastic booklet that you can download and print for free for ideas this Summer to use with your children while developing their communication skills from the Communication Trust.  Click on the link below.

Small Talk booklet and Listen up booklet

Small Talk: 

This booklet provides information about what helps children aged 0-5 learn to talk and listen, whether they are on the right track and what to do if the parents have concerns about their child. 

Listen Up:

For pre-school children between the ages of 0 and 5, Listen Up 0-5, includes a card game with fun activities and advice on how parents can use the resource. 

You can download them for free through the Communication trust.  Follow the ink below.

Friday, 17 June 2016

Pintify: Superheroes

Wowsers!!!!  For Superhero loving fans, what do you think of these???????

You can print out, stick to card and use brass fasteners as described on the sheets.  You can also print off and attach to wooden spoons or empty kitchen rolls.

Fabulous find...... Batman, Hulk, Spider-man, Superman, Ninja turtles

Raspberry rain - Domino colour pebbles

Another amazing site with so many fabulous ideas for makes but this one I am definately going to be making....

Check out this amazing site...

Just found this amazing site and fallen in many ideas, I,m going to be very busy making with the families.  Check out you wont be disappointed.

Glove puppets

I have just come across these amazing dragon glove puppets.  How fab are these and totally no cost - lost cost.  I wish I could give credit to the maker, found on Pinterest.

Couldn't resist adding this cute little picture cute!

Wooden spoon craft

This evening I have been looking through Pinterest and the net for ideas for wooden spoon crafts.  So many fantastic ideas, I cant wait to have a go at some of them.  This one in particular is going to be one of my next projects and I will keep you posted on the outcome.....

How fantastic are these Superhero wooden spoons?

I'm thinking of making a princess and a knight one too, so I was really pleased to come across this fantastic dragon one!

Loving these special Royal ones of the Queen, one of her corgis and a soldier.  Shame its a bit late to make them for her birthday....maybe next year!

Sunday, 12 June 2016

Ice play

With all the lovely warm weather we have been having at the moment until today typically, I have been exploring ideas for ice play.

The imagination tree in particular has some fantastic ideas.  Pop on over to have a look:

I thought i would have a go at making an ice block myself filled with interesting items to discover and talk about.  Lots of opportunities for:

  • Discovering - the properties of water turning to ice and then melting (liquid, solid, liquid)
  • Problem solving
  • Lots of opportunities for language development
Items needed:

  • Container for the ice block to be made.  I used an old ice cream container
  • Jug of water
  • Selection of interesting items that both sink and float to make sure that the ice block isn't one sided
  • Glitter to add a bit of sparkle (optional)
  • Food colouring - optional (I only used glitter)
Once you have added your items and the water pop in the freezer.  

* Children should be supervised at all times as young children could choke on the ice if left unsupervised.

What can you see so far? Shape, colours, patterns..... anything else?

What about now?.........

Outdoor / indoor nature play

There are many benefits to outdoor play for children including: Well-being, exploration, developing independence, creativity, social skills and learning through play.  Being able to get messy is another when creating mud pies and more.

Here is an example of an outdoor tray that I use with the families when we have an out and about session.  The resources are set out so that the children can pick and choose what they would like to do and explore.  

Contents for my outdoor tray 1 include:
  • Large plastic tray (I use a boot tray usually used to put dirty wellington boots or similar on purchased in any hardware store)
  • Selection of childrens diffing tools including forks and spades
  • Measuring cups found in the kitchen isle which we use as digging tools too.  
  • Childrens gardening gloves.  Although I encourage children and their families that it's ok to get dirty, some children dont like the feel of the compost etc
  • Magnifying glasses made out of plastic for the children to view any mini beasts they may find when exploring
  • A plastic wash bag which can be used to observe mini beasts, carry any finds in such as leaves etc or can be used to plant broad beans or similar as it will act as a mini greenhouse
  • I added some plastic mini beasts 
  • Old plastic cotton reel to make marks with or use as a sieve

Contents for my outdoor tray 2 include:
  • Wood chips
  • Wood slices
  • Pebbles
  • Pine cones
  • Chopped pieces of a branch

The good thing about these nature trays is that if it's a really rainy day you can play inside.