Expressive Arts & Design

Construction play: building a child’s creative skills

Construction play with bricks and blocks gives children an opportunity to handle, manipulate and examine 3D objects. Here are some ideas about how you can support those creative play sessions As an early years educator, I’ve always felt that construction play can offer huge benefits to young children, especially when there are no time constraints… Continue reading Construction play: building a child’s creative skills

Literacy

Fun Fridge Phonics: blending simple sounds and reading sentences

Building early reading skills can be simple and fun for children and carers alike. A set of magnetic letters and a fridge door leads to a lot of phonics blending fun... The kitchen is a great place for young children to learn. But those discoveries don’t have to be limited to fun food science, not… Continue reading Fun Fridge Phonics: blending simple sounds and reading sentences

Understanding the World

Chocolate soup! Food science discoveries to get children cooking

It’s never too soon to involve your child in the basics of food preparation. There are so many safe, messy and yummy activities you can share with to get kids cooking. But when do you start to introduce your child to the science of cooking – with what happens when ingredients are combined, heated and… Continue reading Chocolate soup! Food science discoveries to get children cooking

Misc

Best of the Blog 2021: raising a confident, curious grandchild

Here’s a roundup of my best educational content from 2021. It's filled with activities and observations to make learning fun for your child or grandchild... I’ve been reflecting on the many blogs that I’ve written during 2021.  A lot has changed in the past year. My granddaughter Daisy started the year in a Nursery class… Continue reading Best of the Blog 2021: raising a confident, curious grandchild

Communication & Language

Children’s books offer more than just a story

Storytime is a special moment for a grandparents and children alike. Sometimes an idea in a book can spark a child’s imagination and shape their play for hours to come... There is no doubt that my granddaughter Daisy loves books.  Having a book read to her at bedtime is part of her daily routine, with… Continue reading Children’s books offer more than just a story

Mathematics

Supercubes: numeracy and hands-on learning

Making ‘supercubes’ is a great way for children to explore cube numbers, and what happens when numbers are increased by the ‘power of three dimensions’ At times I see my granddaughter Daisy playing on her own, completely immersed in her imaginary play. At other times, she likes an adult to join her in the play:… Continue reading Supercubes: numeracy and hands-on learning

Literacy

Learning the uppercase alphabet

For most children, learning the alphabet is an experience that takes place over a long period of time and involves a lot of repetition and familiarisation across many different contexts. There is a lot to learn, from the names of the letters to their order, to the fact that there are lowercase and uppercase versions… Continue reading Learning the uppercase alphabet

Understanding the World

Buried treasure: harvesting potatoes with your grandchild

Most parents and grandparents will understand that spending a healthy amount of time outdoors brings huge benefits for children – sometimes the trick is to find those activities which enable children to enjoy the natural world with ease.  Planting and harvesting fruits and vegetables is a great way to do this in your own back garden.… Continue reading Buried treasure: harvesting potatoes with your grandchild

Mathematics

Subitising fun with Compare Bears

My granddaughter Daisy has played with my set of Compare Bears on several occasions.  By virtue of their varying sizes and colours, Compare Bears allow young children to explore and learn about counting, sorting, patterning, and size and mass comparison in a fun, relaxed way. Now they're supporting Daisy in an important new skill: subitising.… Continue reading Subitising fun with Compare Bears