The chilly weather inspired a winter playdough table with a variety of materials in cool colours. We also chose ‘Stick Man’ by Julia Donaldson as one of our Books of the Week—the children always love his wintertime adventures. They also loved playing in our hairdressing ‘salon’, using a variety of accessories to create new styles for their ‘customers’! Here are a few of the other activities the children have enjoyed:

Mark-Making and Literacy

In our ‘vanishing words’ activity, the children used paintbrushes to trace over chalk words with water, to make them disappear, promoting fine motor skills and letter recognition. Literacy puzzles and phonics object tubs provided more focused activities for the older children, encouraging their first steps towards sounding out letters and reading.


Unifix cubes were supplied for length-matching and scooping activities, and we also set up traditional scales and objects to weigh. These activities helped the children develop language and skills around transferring, filling, quantity, number and weight. Our pirate shipwreck activity with its sand, treasure, shells, and number counters promoted number recognition and counting.

The Natural World

Responding to the children’s interests, our outdoor insect discovery tray featured sand, measuring tapes, magnifying glasses and scoops. To prepare for the Big Garden Bird Watch, the bird interest tray, with its seed, birdhouse, birds, fact books and diagrams, encouraged the children to learn about and identify birds. They also made birdfeeders to attract flying visitors!

Emotional Development

We shared short stories on emotions with the children and discussed feelings in circle time, leading up to several activities based on popular ‘The Colour Monster’ emotions book: monster-making with loose parts, painted monster portraits, feelings phonics, colourful playdough, colour mixing with pipettes, and colour scavenger hunts!

Forest School and BookTrust Activities

Using resources collected from the woods, the children had the chance to build dens. They also started participating in the library BookTrust scheme, attending weekly story sessions and doing the accompanying activities throughout February.

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