Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Pancake Day

It is Shrove Tuesday today so I set out a pancake activity for the children I had in my care.

I chopped up lots of different fruits and toppings; apple, pear, banana, raisins, lemon and sugar and set them on the table in little bowls.  Once the pancakes had cooled down, I brought them in and the children chose their toppings before eating them!  This activity supported the children's self confidence and self esteem, giving them the opportunity to make decisions and develop independence.

I made these wall displays to brighten up my setting a little.  The one on the left is a poem that we sang:

Mix a pancake,
Stir a pancake,
Pop it in the pan;
Fry the pancake,
Toss the pancake,
Catch it if you can.

The actions to the rhyme can be found here. The children love it when we sing. 

Our books today were:

Poppy's Pancake Day by Sue Graves

The Big Pancake by Ladybird Books

I think this was actually mine was I was little!  It says 30p on the back so it must be pretty old!
Apple Grove Pals play set: The Great Pancake Caper by Vaughn Johnson

This is a great little set from Little Tikes.  I picked it up in Home Bargains for £2.99.  The children love this playset and become engrossed in putting the different hats on and finding the right one for each animal.

Well i'm off to continue filling out my SEF.  Next week we start our World Book Day theme with the topic of Elmer.  I have lots of exciting activities planned, so watch this space!

Sunday, 19 February 2012

A LOVE-ly Valentine's Day

First of all I'd like to apologise for not keeping up to date with my blog recently.  I have been so busy.  Many of my Parents will know that I have recently signed up to Baby's Days, so I have been busy filling out all the childrens details, setting my planning for the next 4 weeks, and typing up Next Steps, Individual Learning Plans (ILP), progress and assesment scales, etc, etc!  There is so much to do initially, but hopefully once everything is filled out I will have more time for other things!  I also have my Ofsted inspection this summer, so I have been making a start on my Self Evaluation Form (SEF) in preparation.  It it such a lengthly task!

Anyway, this month our theme was Valentines Day.  The children made some lovely things to take home for their mummies and daddies and have learnt lots over the past few weeks.  3 of my mindees are between 21-22 months old and their speech is really starting to come along now, so we have been learning lots of new words.

I made a wall display featuring different ways in which we show people we love them.

We looked at the words and I read them out to the children and we looked at the pictures and how we thought the people were feeling.  We also looked at the colours and learnt the colour red.

Our book list this week were Guess How much I Love you, Snuggle Nuzzle, Guess how much I love you All Year Round, The Little Valentine and All Kinds of Feelings.

The children love having story time in the afternoon as much as I love reading to them!

I made a little Valentine's display... I say little as I really don't have the space at my house.  We are so desperate to move, but I think it's going to be a few years yet before we can.  So this was on top of the toy units where the children could see it.

The first of our valentine's activities were these lovely footprint hearts.  The children each had their feet painted red and then stamped them in a heart formation onto some Valentines paper I printed from Spaklebox.
I got the idea from Paula, another lovely Childminder on an Activity Ideas group on Facebook where we all share craft ideas.  The Mummies and Daddies loved them.

We then made these lovely doily heart poems with a painted hand print in the centre for each child.

I got the doiley's from eBay.  They were a snip at just £1.95 for 12. I'm so pleased with how they turned out and they make a lovely keepsake.

We also did 2 baking activities... some lovely pink shortbread hearts (recipe here) and some strawberry swirl hearts.

The strawberry swirl hearts were made in the same way as my Strawberry Swirls, but rather than rolling the pastry into a sausage from one end, you do it from both ends and then pinch the bottom edge to make a point.  Once sliced, they look like hearts.  They were very yummy and even more so knowing that they were made with lots of Valentines love!!

NEXT WEEK: Pancake day!

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