Grey Squirrels, 30 Nov
The Grey Squirrels have been discussing hibernation and the different ways animals and insects survive Winter. We played games with soft toys, identifying whether our creature is asleep or awake. We smashed gummy candy frogs out of ice slabs to feel how they stay flexible in the ice because they are made of sugar (turning the fluids in their bodies to sugar syrup is a survival strategy frogs use). We enjoyed the beautiful book "Winter sleep". These activities led to wonderful conversations among the children about what different animals do and gave them an opportunity to think critically about what they think they might do and why and also give some with experience of these animals in Winter a chance to share. It was fascinating and we all seemed to learn a lot from each other.
Free play was rich and dynamic this week. A fort with kitchen equipment bolstered long imaginative play for much of the class. Our tool circle was a hub of activity that at some points saw the whole class working away on their own projects. We have a creative group with a lot of drive for specific projects and so we had a wide variety of activities from boat carving, spoon carving and jewellery box making going on. This tool circle space if a wonderful environment for fine motor skills to be refined, for strength and perseverance to be developed and for companionable social skills to form as they chat with each other as they work.