#2 Storytelling!

Dear parents and carers,

We hope your are all keeping well. We have enjoyed seeing all of the photos and videos that you have been sending in via Tapestry! Keep them coming! We hope you have also enjoyed seeing video messages from staff - we plan to send these regularly on Tapestry.

This week we have a challenge focused on storytelling, links to live animal webcams, another app with lots of activity ideas, and links to support both adults and children's mental wellbeing.


Weekly Challenge 2: Storytelling
a) For all ages: can you build a storytelling cubby? Having a cosy space to share books and stories can make it an even more special bonding time. For ideas see: 

b) For ages 2 and up: 'Helicopter' stories! (this challenge is for adults as much as children!)
'Helicopter stories' is a simple process that we sometimes use at nursery, where the adult writes down the child's story, word for word (this could be just a couple of sentences, or a full page or more!)  - you can do this within your cubby! When the story is written, mark out a stage on the floor, and an adult narrates the story, with different children (and any other family members available!) acting out the different characters.

For more details on 'helicopter stories' see:

and for how it can and has been done with 2 year olds: https://www.makebelievearts.co.uk/working-with-two-year-olds

This process helps children's confidence as they see their ideas come to fruition, their interest in writing as they see the power of the written word, and their imagination, vocabulary and understanding of story structures will develop very quickly. Try it a few times and see how your child's stories develop over time!

Links to audiobooks and online books
If you have already read all the books in your house and are looking for more stories - there are lots online!
'Now Press Play', which we use at nursery to listen to stories through headphones, have kindly made some of their stories available for parents: http://nowpressplay.co.uk/learn-at-home/ Password: nowpressplay
This site has online books in 60 languages: http://en.childrenslibrary.org/
This site has lots of free audiobooks https://www.storynory.com/

Spotify has lots of playlists of children's books. (you will have to put up with some adverts) eg https://open.spotify.com/playlist/0oB4OsTkVnUerbU2moieDb

This site is not audiobooks, but videos of actors reading stories, which are quite nice: https://www.storylineonline.net/ 

Easy Peasy app with daily games
Easypeasy is a web app  that sends high -quality activity ideas for parents and young children to your phone every week, designed specifically for parents of 0-5 year olds. They have made their service free for parents until 31st May, you can sign up here: https://www.easypeasyapp.com/parents

Watch live animals at aquariums and zoos
Lots of aquariums and zoos around the world have opened up their live webcams for you to see - here are just a couple of examples!
Aquarium: https://www.montereybayaquarium.org/animals/live-cams

 Dublin Zoo: https://www.dublinzoo.ie/animals/animal-webcams/ - my favourite is the penguins

Supporting mental wellbeing

For adults: Every Mind Matters has now released expert advice and top tips on how to look after your mental wellbeing if you need to stay at home during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. It also includes guidance if you’re feeling worried or anxious about the outbreak. Please visit: www.nhs.uk/oneyou/every-mind-matters/

For children: https://mindup.org.uk/mindup-activities/

And finally, a nice video on our current situation: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DA_SsZFYw0w&feature=youtu.be&app=desktop

Best wishes to all of you,
Clapton Park Children's Centre