Latest Nursery Blog
We hope you enjoy reading our latest Nursery blog all about using the seasons to support learning.
It felt like no sooner than we had set up the Early Years outdoor classroom we were being subjected to a waterfall of orange and brown leaves, high winds, and a sudden temperature drop catapulting us into autumn.
I love exploring seasons as a topic as it can be directly linked to children's own experiences helping them to make sense of their world and immediate environment.
We began our learning with a brisk autumn treasure hunt on a cold and bright morning. As we are fortunate enough to be situated in the centre of town, we set off from our outdoor classroom and meandered through the Bishop's Palace Gardens. We found conkers in abundance, and a diverse collection of fallen leaves from the Arboretum.
"It is important that children have exposure to holding many different textures, to help them map out their sense of touch and build sensitivity in their fingertips."
Nature provides these opportunities, with soft smooth conkers contrasting against thin spiky sticks, rubbery and waxy leaves versus rough and crunchy. This has also encouraged the children to extend their vocabulary as they were invited to think of words to describe their haul. Nature never fails to provide dynamic and stimulating lines of development to support learning across all the areas of the Early Years curriculum.
After all the leaves had been stroked, prodded and crunched, the children used them as a media to create an autumn collage. Their fine motor and number skills were challenged with counting conkers using tweezers. We experimented with painting and printing the leaves.
We made autumn play dough and used our natural resources as an open ended creative activity. The children made mice, fire engines and flowers! To support physical development, we enjoyed sweeping up the leaves in our outdoor classroom.
How could we forget we love being imaginative and to cook using the autumn leaves as an ingredient in the mud kitchen!
Prebendal Nursery Teacher