I have spoken before about my favourite activities to do with the children. Just like feeding the ducks and conker collecting, Blackberry picking is another favourite of ours. Once again, it gets us outside, the children love it and it’s free!
Blackberry picking is a great activity to help children learn to manage risks. Blackberries are often found in amongst stinging nettles and prickly bushes which gives the children an opportunity to assess risk.
It provides children the opportunity for some Maths – counting their blackberries being an obvious one and they can explore mathematical concepts such as full and empty.
They can extend their vocabulary learning new words such as “ripe”. Children learn where blackberries grow and how to care for things in the environment. They develop their fine motor skills in picking the blackberries and handling them whilst using their gross motor skills stretching up high to reach them and on the walk itself.
All the while they are developing their personal, social and emotional development and communication and language skills by interacting and chatting to one another.
Areas of Learning Covered: Personal, Social and Emotional Development, Communication & Language, Physical Development, Mathematics and Understanding the World
Take a look at some of our other favourite activities:
As a childminder with two school runs, multiple children’s nap times to manage and hot lunches and dinners to prepare, getting out comes with its challenges so Outdoor Classroom Day was a great impetus to get us outside.
We were blessed with beautiful skies and sunshine so armed with just waterproofs to protect us from the wet ground we headed out.
We started off by feeding the ducks…
And some beautiful swans swam over to see us…
Then we had a fun game of pooh sticks…
We saw some lovely sheep…
Before taking a nice walk and jumping in some big muddy puddles…
We went back home for a nice hot lunch and a long afternoon nap…
We had a lovely morning chatting and discussing what we could see. We experienced lots of different surfaces underfoot and found that some were slippy like the wooden bridge when wet. We got up close to open water and listened closely to instructions to ensure we stayed safe.
How did you spend Outdoor Classroom Day?
Areas of Learning Covered: Physical Development, Communication & Language, Personal Social and Emotional Development and Understanding the World.
I think conker collecting is my favourite activity to do with the children. It’s not just fun, it gets us out in the fresh air, it’s easy and it’s free! The children, whatever their age, all love it too.
We are extremely lucky that we have a beautiful horse chestnut tree just seconds from our door so on our way to school and back each day collecting conkers is a highlight of our day. We also have some other favourite spots to collect them too.
Areas of Learning Covered: Physical Development, Communication & Language, Understanding the World, Mathematics and Personal, Social and Emotional Development.
Take a look at some of our other favourite childminding activities –
The children have been busy with lots of Autumnal Arts and Crafts. These lovely felt and glitter leaf shaped stickers used in these lovely pictures were from our favourite Arts and Crafts supplies Baker Ross
Recently we have had great fun growing these fun Cress Heads.
We filled our pots with soil and sprinkled a generous amount of seeds on top. We watered our pots and then covered them with a piece of paper and secured with an elastic band. We then popped them up on a sunny windowsill and waited. In just a few days the paper on my sons pot was bulging and he was so excited to take the paper off and see the cress beneath. My seeds took a few days longer to grow but still a great result.
These are great for kids as a first gardening project and super easy. These pots just have mine and my sons name on but you could go to town on your plant pot with stickers, paint and pens to make them extra fun if you wished.
Today, Tuesday 5th February, Chinese New Year begins.
This year is the year of the pig.
In nurseries and schools up and down the country today, children will be celebrating and learning about Chinese New Year in lots of fun and exciting ways. With just two little ones aged just 16 and 19 months however, we kept it simple with this fab Peppa Pig Chinese New Year book. Because, if there’s one thing all my mindees love it’s Peppa Pig!
In 2018 as well as planting and growing our annual sunflowers which, this year were a mixed success(!) we also planted some herbs, fruit and vegetables. We had some success with rhubarb and also with mint. However, despite also planting some peppers, courgettes and onions, only the carrots proved fruitful – I blame the weather!
We will be having another go in 2019 and hope to report better success!!
Yesterday, Sunday 3rd June, saw Oxfordshire play host to the ‘World Pooh Sticks Championships’.
As all Winnie the Pooh fans will know, Pooh Sticks is the game of dropping twigs into a stream from the bridge above and seeing whose stick emerges first from the other side.
Here at Aston Childcare we love an impromptu game of pooh sticks! The children’s excitement of watching their floating twig arrive safely at the other side of the bridge never fails to amuse.
It’s a game we probably all remember fondly from our own childhoods. There really is nothing simpler than throwing a stick in the water that the children love so much! No childhood is complete without a game of PoohSticks!
Today marks the end of Autumn, where has the time gone?!
I love Autumn, I am glad the heat of the Summer has passed, I am not rushing to cover the children in suncream or hats or frantically hydrating them and cooling them down and I love seeing the first blackberries on hedgerows and pulling on extra cosy layers.
As a childminder it’s a lovely time of year to be with the children. Here at Aston Childcare we have spent this season jumping in crunchy Autumn leaves, blackberry picking, collecting conkers, doing arts and crafts inspired by bonfire night and Halloween, exploring acorns, conkers and leaves in our nature tray and chatting about hibernation.
This week we have been busy making these lovely Autumn Leaf Suncatchers.
We picked the fresh autumn leaves up off the ground in the garden during playtime after lunch then once back indoors decorated our paper plates with Autumn colours and stuck the leaves on to the contact paper. Once finished, we hung them up on the window and waited for the sun to shine through them. They are really effective and look beautiful when the sun shines.
It was a lovely craft do with the toddlers and pre-schoolers to explore and welcome in the new season.
Areas of learning covered: Understanding the World, Communication & Language, Art and Design, Personal, Social and Emotional Development.