Caterpillars and Swings

15th May 2024

This week, as part of our ‘Amazing Animals’ topic, Willows and Rowans learnt about caterpillars…next week we will be focusing on butterflies. We started our sessions by looking at the butterfly life cycle and ordering some pictures of an egg, caterpillar, chrysalis and butterfly. Then we made some of our own caterpillars by snipping up some elder sticks into small pieces using secateurs. We poked the pith out of the centre of the elder, using a hand drill or a tent peg, depending on the thickness of the stick, then threaded our pieces onto a pipe cleaner to make a wriggly stick caterpillar. The stick caterpillars are making their way home to you shortly!
We worked together as a class to make a different, much  longer caterpillar, using bottle tops. We hammered nails through the bottle tops and onto a long plank of wood. We also created our own wood slice caterpillars, used our letter  stones to make the words from the caterpillar life cycle, and found lots of other exciting and interesting things to do!
Oaks class have made so much progress since September in independence, resilience, engagement and attention. They had the best morning exploring and playing, happily choosing their own activities as well as  focussing well on the range of table top explorations. Today we made rain-makers by placing sticks and lentils in a bottle, we investigated mini-beasts, used ink stampers to make mini-beast pictures, played with the letter stones and balanced along crates, the seesaw and high planks…to name a few!
It was a swinging and spinning kind of day today!
Such fun, as well as encouraging turn taking, core strength, balance, rhythm, spacial awareness, gross and fine motor skills and those calming, feel  good vibes.
Did you know… spinning, helps the development of both sides of the brain – it helps children to pay better attention since both sides of the brain are being utilised. Spinning enhances vestibular stimulation which helps the brain decide if it is ready for more learning and can process what has been taught.