Monday, 15 October 2012

Nature Dough/ Invitation to Play

Creating 'invitations to play' is one of my favourite things to do for my children and also in my classroom when I'm teaching.
There are so many reasons why I love a good invitation, but mainly because I love watching and observing the child in play and seeing where they take it and what they do with the 'equiment/ objects I've set out for them.
This is because an 'invitation to play' is open ended. There is no outcome, no finished product, no procedure. The child can 'play' at there own level and ability, extend on their own personal prior knowledge and most importantly bring their own interests to their play.
I'd like to share with you this 'Invitation to play' that I created for Miss M today
Nature Dough
It's wonderful to use items from nature. It offers children opportunities to explore these objects through play and it costs you nothing!
Early in the day Miss M and I had spent some time in our garden collecting various natural objects. We collected leaves, pebbles, rocks, sticks, flowers.
I had made some playdough but left it plain (uncoloured)
I have plans for this white dough in another actvity at a later date
Setout all your selected materials and then that is your job done!
Step back, watch and enjoy!
Miss M went straight to the small rocks first
I did not influence her play by making any suggestions- I was silent in the background
It wasnt long before she discovered the dough!
Depending on your 'invitation to play' children may be developing skills such as fine motor, problem solving, language, counting and other math skills and creativity.
I many circumstances all of these at once!
Miss M is working her fine motor by picking up the small rocks and pushing them in the dough! She is problem solving when she is working out where to put the next rock. She's using math skills of number- counting and measurment- area. She is using loads of language as she talks about what she is doing. Last but by no means least she is being creative!
Her play went in many directions, it evolved, it changed, it was fascinating and
it was FUN!
There are many ways you can create wonderful invitations to play with playdough.
Here is a link I just love. I have all the neccessary supplies and I'm looking forward to giving it a go soon.
Enyoy and Play

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