Last week we took part in National Child Protection Week and this has lead educators and children to identify signs that their body gives us when we are feeling unsure, unsafe or unhappy. The children worked together to brainstorm a list of indicators including an uncomfortable feeling in the stomach, shaking in the arms and legs, wanting to cry, having the hairs on our arms and legs stand up, and feeling our hearts race. The children then identified the people that they could approach or tell when they were exhibiting these signs including;
Austin ‘my mummy and daddy’
Jayda ‘my mum and dad’
Amelia ‘nanny poppins’
Rhuani ‘friends who all play together and stay together, like older friends’
Parisha ‘someone who works at the shop’
Addi ‘a nurse’
Eli ‘Miss Clare at OOSH’
This was a wonderful opportunity for the children to connect with their own bodies and intuition. It was also an excellent time to encourage the children to think about those people who they can turn to for help, advice, and support. Educators further instilled the safe messages by encouraging the children to draw and paint pictures of their safety heroes on the clear easel.
As the weather is getting warmer and more flowers are in bloom we have noticed an increase in bees in our beautiful environment. This has sparked a lot of conversation and interest among the children. The children gathered and began to discuss their knowledge and understanding of bees. More specifically the children began to talk about the role of bees, where they live, and their general lifecycle. To aid the children in their discussions, educators gave them large sheets of paper, coloured markers, and flash card provocations of bees and their environments. It wasn’t long before the children were drawing a bee hotel. They collaboratively worked on this adding masking tape to section the ‘hotel’ into many rooms. In each room, the children drew a bee and some flowers. In the largest room a Queen bee was drawn (complete with a crown and jewels). It was noted that the Queen bee was the ‘boss’ and the other bees followed her directions and made honey. Educators were intrigued with the idea of a bee hotel and gathered the children to find out more. Later that day and into the following day the children began to make a 3D representation of their bee hotel. They utilised several large cardboard boxes, and the nuts, bolts, and tools from the ‘Make-do Kit.’ The children began by arranging the boxes and securing them in place with the nuts and bolts. They then drew a series of rectangular shapes on the outside of the boxes to mark out where the windows were to go. Using one of the ‘Make-do’ tools the children cut away the windows and went on to make a large door using a similar process. As more and more children entered the area of the bee hotel, the ideas continued to flow and they were invited together on the mat to brainstorm their ideas moving forward. A question was posed; ‘What do the Bees need in their new house/hotel?’ Their imaginations took over and together they have come up with some amazing wild and wonderful ideas. These included;
- furniture such as beds, tables, wardrobes, and chairs
- curtains and soft furnishings such as cushions and blankets
- a pool
- lifts, stairs, a rocket, and slippery dips for the bees to move up and down within the hotel
- bee cars for the bees to transport the honey
- specific rooms such as a playroom, a secret room, and a kitchen
- items to attract the bees to the new house/hotel such as flowers
- doors with locks to keep people out while the bees are making their ‘magic honey’
- lasers, traps, and locks to keep the ‘bad guys’ from stealing their honey.
The brainstorming has opened up several avenues for us to explore in the coming weeks and perhaps months. The experience also allowed the children to develop their listening skills, imagination and creativity, problem-solving skills, and their social abilities (including the ability to wait and take turns). Furthermore, we can see that the children all have very positive dispositions towards learning. We will be sharing the progress of this project on Seesaw and in the bulletin, so be sure to keep an eye out!
We have continued to be amazed by all the home learning that has been occurring and have been particularly impressed with the beautiful drawings and artworks that many of the Bishop Tyrrell Preschool children have made for the residence at a local nursing home. We continue to encourage anyone who would like to send in artwork to do so, as we hope to send this to the residence in the coming weeks.
We wish everyone a safe term break.