Saturday, 16 August 2014

Loose parts play, shells and mirror

We've had some fun exploring reflections and making patterns with some loose parts play. Loose parts play is nothing new. Anyone remember playing with Grandma's button tin when you were little? It is a great way to encourage concentration and creativity. You provide your child with loose 'bits' that can be explored, moved around, combined and experimented with.



The beauty of loose parts is they can literally be anything, promoting creative thinking. Because the 'parts' are not prescribed as something the play time can be open ended- there is no right or wrong thing to do with the items (encouraging a child to develop their concentration span).

We have a rather large collection of shells , to which we added some glass beads. I presented them along with a mirror in some glass jars.


The Frog played with them and enjoyed making patterns, empty and filling the pots. Playing with the items on a mirror The Fairy spotted the play set up as soon as she arrived home from school. Her shells were people and the glass beads we the sea. She created a whole narrative with the loose parts as props.

Do you have a favorite loose parts toys?

Monday, 28 July 2014

Welcome to today's Parenting Pin it Party.
Parenting Pin It Party Badge Monday Parenting Pin It Party #21

As the summer hols have just started in the UK (sorry to all our US readers who are nearly starting to think about back to school stuff already), we are on a summery vibe. I love this post from A Happy Healthy Mummy packed with ideas for crafty summer holiday fun.

This post from Mini Monets and Mommies is perfect for experimenting with science and art at the same time.

Fancy joining in with the Parenting Pin It Party?
How does it work
  • You link up you pins below
  • We'd really love if if you could follow us on Pinterest. 
  • It would be really nice if you visit a few other people who have linked up and leave a comment (it makes my day when I get blog comments - it shows someone's reading!)
We will
  • Visit your post and pin it
  • Choose our favorite post to feature next week (hosted over at Romanian Mum). If you are featured , you might want to 'grab a badge' 
The Fairy and The Frog
<div align="center"><a href="http://www.thefairyandthefrog.com/" title="The Fairy and The Frog" target="_blank"><img src="http://jbmumofone.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/featured-pinner.jpg" alt="The Fairy and The Frog" style="border:none;" /></a></div>
  • You may also like to sign up for our Parenting Pin it Party news letters (we'll only mail you with relevant stuff *promise* )
 


Wednesday, 25 June 2014

Concept learning guessing game

This guessing game is super quick and thrifty. Its also great hands on way for teaching concepts.
Whilst I was clearing out the Frogs sock draw I remembered a great way of teaching the concepts that was shown to me by a brilliant teacher.



You just need some patterned socks (we used stars and stripes), preferably in the same colour scheme and an old box. Cut x shapes for the tips of the socks to fit through.

Then you can play. Take turn to guess if its stars or stripes (or what ever patterns you have). For children who have language disorders concepts can be difficult to learn so it is best to teach one concept at a time rather than two at once . You can talk about the concept you are teaching and 'not' the concept (e.g. stars vs not stars rather than stripes vs stars).

After guessing you pull and find out what you have.

The Frog took a while to get hang of the guessing. The Fairy loved it. You could also use this game for teaching colours.

Language Links: not/ stars/stripes
Other skills: Predicting


Monday, 9 June 2014

Parenting Pin it Party

It's Monday, which means its Parenting Pin it Party time. 

Parenting Pin It Party Badge Monday Parenting Pin It Party #21


We love book themed activities and crafts. This week this post packed with activities based on the book 'Blueberries for Sal' caught my eye. 

The book is an American classic and this post has games, sacks and craft to accompany it. 

Fancy joining in?
How does it work
  • You link up you pins below
  • We'd really love if if you could follow us on Pinterest. 
  • It would be really nice if you visit a few other people who have linked up and leave a comment (it makes my day when I get blog comments - it shows someone's reading!)
We will
  • Visit your post and pin it
  • Choose our favorite post to feature next week (hosted over at Romanian Mum). If you are featured , you might want to 'grab a badge' 
The Fairy and The Frog
<div align="center"><a href="http://www.thefairyandthefrog.com/" title="The Fairy and The Frog" target="_blank"><img src="http://jbmumofone.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/featured-pinner.jpg" alt="The Fairy and The Frog" style="border:none;" /></a></div>
  • You may also like to sign up for our Parenting Pin it Party news letters (we'll only mail you with relevant stuff *promise* )
 


The Parenting Pin it Party is brought to you by Romanian MumKiddy ChartsMum of OneLove All BlogsA Frugal Family and All you need is love and cake .

Tuesday, 3 June 2014

DIY airport role play

Dramatic (or pretend) play set ups are not only lots of fun they are great for developing imagination and language skills.

The Frog is super keen on all things transport related so recycled some cereal packets and a big cardboard box into an airport.

The Fairy and I talked about what might be at an airport and searched through our junk box to find appropriate shaped items

When the Fairy saw me writing some signs she was keen to join in - a great way to develop literacy skills in a functional way.






Then it was play time.


Monday, 19 May 2014

Crafting with petals

Crafting with natural materials can be great fun. The summer months are fantastic for being able to get outside and get creative (although the spring, autumn and winter months are too as long as you are appropriately dressed!).



I'd love to take the credit for this craft but it is entirely the invention of The Fairy and one of her friends. Whilst her friends mum and I were enjoying a cuppa they were quietly playing out side. When we went to check on them they asked for some extra 'making equipment', they wanted to make with some petals they had found fallen on the ground.


They had spontaneously created a selection of flowers. Lots of creative thinking, planning and experimenting went on as well as practising fine motor skills. Obviously petal art only lasts as long as the flowers but they had fun.


Sunday, 11 May 2014

Seafood Paella #Morrison Mum

I'm not particularly loyal to one supermarket - I tend to go where is nearest. Because we don't live really close to a Morrison I haven't been in one for ages. When I was offered some vouchers so I could have a shopping trip last bank holiday weekend I was more than ready to give it a try. I heard some talk in the media that they were cutting prices and economic shopping is something that always interests me.

I had a lovely surprise when I ventured into Morrisons last weekend. The thing that stuck me the most was the range and freshness of the produce in the green grocery section (including some okra, which will be featuring in a craft post very soon). 



The produce was attractively arranged with little signs telling you about it and giving you tips on how to cook it. Some of the veg was kept extra fresh by a vaporising system, something I had never seen before.


I stocked up on my regulars plus a few extra treats. I brought all the ingredients for this tasty seafood paella. I'd like to claim that I cooked it, but I can't take the credit. The Papa made it as a bank holiday treat. Paella is perfect food for relaxing and is great for a party. We usually make paella with chicken but  the seafood caught my eye and was really economical so we had a seafood paella for a change. The Papa particularly enjoyed this chorizo (which he would like me to point out should be pronounced 'chur -rith - oh' - with no 'z').

The Papa tends to make it up as he goes along so these are rough guidelines. We make it the easy way not authentically (but it is cooked by an authentic Spaniard and tastes lovely!) If you want to try our paella this is what we did:


Soften an onion (you don't want to not rush this part as it gives the dish extra sweetness). Cut a piece of cooking chorizo about the same size as your thumb (you want hard chorizo 'ring' for this recipe not the pre sliced chorizo). Peel the paper from the chorizo and cut it into discs. Then add it to the onions. Wait until the paprika colour is released- this means the chorizo is releasing all the flavour. Add some chopped pepper (I found some black sweet peppers which the kids thought were fab, you can use they usual red or yellow if your prefer). Separately cook some rice according to the packet instructions (if you add a pinch of tumeic to the rice it will turn yellow or if you were being authentic you could use saffron). Add a tin of chopped tomato, the cooked rice and seafood unto the chorizo and onions. Add a cupful of cooked peas. Simmer until ready. We made this for £1.21 per portion- bargin!

Disclaimer: We were given vouchers in order to conduct this review. All views are my own.