#3 Messy and Creative Play

Dear Parents/Carers,

We are wishing you all well as we enter our third week since our nurseries closed. Again it has been lovely to see photos on Tapestry of all of the fun ideas and creative activities you have been doing at home – please do continue to share them! Please see below a weekly challenge, followed by some other links to ideas and resources.
We also wanted to share this blog post, over a week old now, that offers some useful thoughts on supporting your children at home during this time, we hope you find it useful: https://famly.co/blog/covid-19/parents-eyfs-home/

Weekly Challenge #3 Messy and Creative Play

This week we have focused on ‘Messy and Creative Play’. This is great for children of all ages and provides sensory experiences as they look, hear, touch, smell and taste. Other benefits messy play has for children’s development is building their physical skills, imaginative play and creativity and many more. See the links below for lots more ideas.

a)      For all ages: At nursery we often use food such as spaghetti or flour for messy play. But there are lots of other things you can use too, as we know that some key ingredients such as flour may be hard to find at the moment, or you may want to prioritise eating food rather than using it for play. Adding bubbles and or food colouring to water can be the basis for messy play at its simplest, or freezing hard plastic toys in ice blocks in the freezer that can be explored once frozen.

We often use flour play as a great way to support children’s mark making with their fingers in the powder, or using home utensils such as spoons or even sticks from outside or paint brushes. Alternatives to flour could be dry sand, soil, or even small pebbles. If you have access to a garden or communal space, you can make a mud pie.
Using paint of different consistencies, using ping-pong balls, sponges , pieces of string  or just fingers and toes to paint and print is another fun way to get messy!

Shaving foam is also fun, and again it can be mixed with other ingredients to make different substances! (this site has a wide variety of slime recipes using different combinations of glue, cornflour, bicarbonate of soda, shaving foam and other ingredients! https://theimaginationtree.com/super-fluffy-slime-recipe/)


b)     For ages 2 and up: activities like crushed chalk paint which maybe familiar for some children already when doing a forest school session at CPCC. You can put chalk in a bag and allow your child to use a hammer with close adult supervision and crush it. Then you can mix the chalk with water in each pot to make paint! You can go further by using organic spices such as paprika, turmeric and mix with water to make paint.

Making play dough together is fun, as is making real dough for bread or cakes! Children are building their maths skills as they help you to measure how much flour or water is needed and seeing the change in the consistency.


c)      Further challenge for pre-school age: Ice volcanos, making a hurricane or giant bubbles.

Making a Hurricane: water in cup and a spoon to swish around in a circular motion. Food colouring to hand and then pour it into the water to make a hurricane swirl effect.




Please find some further information about messy play and fun activities to do at home below.
This is the Pinterest page for our area SENCO Dianne Sandler who supports our centre, she has an almost limitless list of ideas! https://www.pinterest.co.uk/diannesandler/?eq=dianne%20sandler&etslf=6062




Other ideas and resources
With lots of thanks to all staff and parents who have been sending in ideas and resources – here’s a few more extra links/ideas!
Treasure/scavenger hunts – from as simple as looking for objects to match colours, to elaborate trails with clues around the house: https://www.notimeforflashcards.com/2014/01/indoor-scavenger-hunts-for-kids.html
30 day Lego challenge (could be adapted for other building materials or even just daily drawing): https://www.enchantedlittleworld.com/30-day-lego-challenge-for-kids/
Live baby Osprey cams: watching these baby chicks has been a source of joy! http://sfbayospreys.org/

Boogie Mites: further to the Weekly Challenge #1 about songs and rhymes, Boogie Mites have now made some of their resources available online so you can share more songs that will be familiar to your children from nursery:

Enjoy music sessions with your children to boost development and mood. Your children have regular Boogie Mites music sessions at nursery and they will love taking part with you at home. Boogie Mites are offering free live sessions for you to join at home over the coming months and access to the videos via face book groups and their  youtube channel: https://bit.ly/BoogieMitesYT

If you follow Boogie Mites Head Office fb page (https://bit.ly/BoogieMitesFB)  you will get updates on all the sessions available. You can find lots more information about the benefits of music on their website and blog. https://boogiemites.co.uk/.

And lastly, tips on talking to your children about coronavirus: https://www.hackneyservicesforschools.co.uk/sites/default/files/document/Dr%20Joanne%27s%20Top%20Tips%20for%20Parents%20Carers%20Coronavirus%20EPS.PDF

Best wishes,
All staff at Clapton Park Children’s Centre