Expressive Arts & Design

Back to the magnetic drawing board

There are few things more exciting for a grandparent than buying and presenting a toy to a beloved grandchild, and watching it being incorporated into their imaginative play. As an educator, I find it especially interesting to observe which toys ‘catch on’ with a child, and crucially when they catch on. Sometimes a toy doesn’t… Continue reading Back to the magnetic drawing board

Understanding the World

Take your child on a smartphone safari

As my four-year-old granddaughter Daisy learns the fundamental skills needed for her early years – from numeracy to phonics to healthy eating – she’s becoming increasingly curious about how adults go about their business. Her curiosity extends to all of the specialised tools and equipment that we grown-ups use for our hobbies: the giant bamboo… Continue reading Take your child on a smartphone safari

Literacy

As libraries reopen, the Summer Reading Challenge begins

Local libraries across the UK have begun to reopen as lockdown restrictions, triggered by the pandemic, gradually relax. With this in mind, I began to gather up our library books (those I’d borrowed for Daisy, and my own), ready to return them when I had an opportunity. As I collected the books together, I reflected… Continue reading As libraries reopen, the Summer Reading Challenge begins

Understanding the World

Take your child for a virtual walk; a guest post by Daisy’s Dad.

The COVID-19 pandemic lockdown presents unprecedented challenges for children in the UK. Most of their comforting routines have been disrupted; many have disappeared completely. Familiar destinations such as schools, cafes and soft-play centres are off-limits and visits to beloved friends and relatives are forbidden. Even with some restrictions now lifted, travel is often limited and… Continue reading Take your child for a virtual walk; a guest post by Daisy’s Dad.

Understanding the World

Where am I? A fun activity for grandchildren during ‘lockdown’; Guest Blog by Daisy’s Grandpa

It’s been eight weeks since we last spent time with Daisy.  We’ve learned, like so many grandparents, to navigate our way around Zoom, FaceTime and other ways of keeping in touch by sight and sound.  We all know that none of these technologies are any substitute for that hug administered in a tangle of bendy… Continue reading Where am I? A fun activity for grandchildren during ‘lockdown’; Guest Blog by Daisy’s Grandpa

Literacy

Grandparents and YouTube; a great combination to help preschoolers learn new words

Research shows that pre-school children have a vocabulary of around 1,000 words by the time they are three and they will continue to learn another 500 - 600 words by the time they are four years old. Recently I had been sitting on the floor with Daisy while she played with her mixed collection of… Continue reading Grandparents and YouTube; a great combination to help preschoolers learn new words

Physical Development

Free the penguin! Investigating ice with a preschool child

A guest post by Daisy's Dad In recent weeks there’s been speculation about the likelihood of a chilly weather front reaching the UK, but freezing conditions have already taken hold in Daisy’s world.  This weekend, we had to free a penguin that had became trapped in the ice! Messy activities with Daisy are usually the highlight… Continue reading Free the penguin! Investigating ice with a preschool child

Literacy

World Book Day 2018: reading resources for toddlers

Late afternoon and Daisy had discovered the laundry on an airer and was rushing about the house with a pair of her stripy tights in her hands while Daddy was trying to make her a drink. Then Daddy remembered that I'd told him about the World Book Day official website. The website is full of… Continue reading World Book Day 2018: reading resources for toddlers