Weekly Activities - Wind!
Book of the week: Wind by Carol Thompson.
Synopsis: Let's play out in the wind! There's a wealth of sights, sounds, smells, tastes and textures to discover and enjoy! In this series of richly illustrated books, Carol Thompson celebrates the immediate and sensory response of children to the natural world - whatever the weather!
Weekly Activities: We recently had particularly high winds due to three storms descending on us:- storms Dudley, Eunice and Franklin. Even though this meant we had to be particularly mindful of going under the tree lines at both nurseries, we decided to take full advantage of the changeable weather conditions to explore wind. We talked about different types of winds such as whirlwinds, hurricanes, tornadoes, trade winds, monsoons, gusts, breezes etc and where they were most likely to occur in the world. We discussed the characteristics of wind and asked the children lots of wind related questions:
What happens to the trees when the wind blows?
Which way is the wind pushing you?
Can you move to a place where you can feel the wind blowing on your face?
Can you hear any sound as the wind blows?
Can you make the same sound?
How can you tell that it is windy when you are inside?
What is making the leaves move?
For our main activity we made handheld windmills that the children could take home. We started by asking the children to find a suitable stick which they had to cut it to size either using loppers or a hand saw. They used either card or paper plates for the sails which they could decorate if they wanted to. These had to be folded and then cut in several places. We then folded the four sections into the middle to create the sails. The sails were held in place by hammering a nail into them after they had all been folded into the middle. The children then tried out their windmills by holding them high in the air and waiting for a gust of wind to blow the sails around.
We also made natural wind chimes out of a bendy stick, garden twine, twigs, shells and anything else that made a noise. For a group activity we painted a colourful mural where half the paint went on the paper and the other half ended up on hands, coats and faces! At our Blackheath nursery the children decided they wanted to make a campfire pot holder. They cut two thick "Y" shaped sticks to size and then hammered them into the ground, a little way apart. They placed large pebbles and stones around each base to help hold them in place and then balanced a long stick across the two "Y" sticks from which they could suspend their pot or kettle. They then set about making a pretend campfire underneath.
Home Activity: Stick person parachutist.
1. First, make your stick person from 1 fuzzy pipe cleaner. Twist a loop in the middle for the head, bend back both ends for the arms, twist those ends together for the torso, then what's left is legs. Feel free to bend up the very end for feet.
2. Take a second pipe cleaner and poke one end through the edge of a coffee filter. Fold over once to secure. Take the free end and run through the "hands" of the stick figure (the arms are loops). Connect the free end to the coffee filter and bend up.
3. If you want to get fancy, you could decorate the filter with pens or paints, but plain white works well too.
4. Find a high spot on a breezy day, gently let go and watch as your pipe cleaner parachutist slowly floats back down to earth.
5. Take a video and upload it to Tapestry so we can see how well it worked.