Across the Autumn term we have been thinking about some of the seasonal changes that we could see all around us. We have spent lots of time in the local environment, walking and foraging in the dene for blackberries, to make jam and yummy crumbles and enjoying hot chocolate and toasted marshmallows on our open fire, back at nursery.
We have collected lots of natural resources such as pine cones, conkers , leaves and berries to use in our mud kitchen and in other experiences back at nursery and created some beautiful representations of them using pencils and paint on silk.
Across thee Autumn term, we have enjoyed foraging in the local dene for berries, conkers, leaves, sticks and other forms of Autumn treasures that we could bring back to use at nursery.
Foraging in the Dene
Early in October, we began to notice the blackberries growing on one of our walks. We took our buckets and bags and collected lots of delicious blackberries to be used in some cooking experiences.
We made blackberry and apple crumble and some blackberry jam, which we enjoyed for snack on our homemade bread!
During November, we have been talking about remembrance with the children. We have looked at the significance of the Poppy and the children have had the opportunity to create representations of these, through a range of experiences, including creating remembrance lamps with glass paints and a collaborative silk hanging.
To help the children to understand the idea of Remembrance, Alyson came in to talk to us about her Dad who was a soldier in the war. She brought photographs and lots of objects and artefacts, including her Dad’s very special war medals to show the children and to ask any questions they had about them.
While listening to Vera Lynn’s- ‘We’ll meet again’ Libby gave Alyson one of the special poppy jars she had painted, to light the candle inside on Remembrance Sunday and remember her Dad.
The following day, the children visited the Cenotaph in Horden. We talked about the Remembrance celebrations they may see on Remembrance Sunday and even planted their own painted poppy amongst the flowers.
When we returned to nursery after the summer we were amazed to see that the tiny sunflower seeds we had planted in the Spring, had grown into tall, towering sunflowers, growing high above our heads.
The children loved watching all of the bees, butterflies and other insects that landed on the sunflowers and created some beautiful representations of their own sunflowers, using paint, pens and silk.
Once the flowers began to droop and wilt, the children started to notice the seeds inside the sunflower head beginning to change. We also noticed that one of the sunflower stalks was a becoming a little bit wobbly and we decided to dig it up to take a closer look.
Lots of lovely learning came from exploring the sunflower. There was lots of mathematical language around height and measurements and counting opportunities when exploring the seeds. We talked about how the seeds could be planted again the following year and the planting process.
Diwali is the Hindu festival of light, which is celebrated for several days in India each year. The light symbolizes the victory of light over darkness and good over evil. Throughout the Diwali celebrations at nursery, the children had the opportunity to find out all about the festival- create their own Diya lamps, paint glass lamps in beautiful colours and make their own sweets to take home to share with their family.
We also explored the idea of light. We investigated light and dark and how shadows could be created using torches and other sources of light. The children showed real interest in the colours, projections and cause and effect, as they explored the resources.