NurtureStore http://nurturestore.co.uk kids activities, art and craft, play dough recipes and more Mon, 29 Jun 2015 10:13:24 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.2 Glitter butterfly craft http://nurturestore.co.uk/glitter-butterfly-craft http://nurturestore.co.uk/glitter-butterfly-craft#comments Mon, 29 Jun 2015 10:13:17 +0000 http://nurturestore.co.uk/?p=10862 Here’s a glitter butterfly craft from our archive to celebrate the fact that we spotted our first butterfly in the garden this week! Glitter Butterfly Craft If you’re a member of the Nurturestore Facebook community you’ll know we’ve been raising five caterpillars over the last few weeks. The girls have been fascinated by the metamorphosis […]

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Here’s a glitter butterfly craft from our archive to celebrate the fact that we spotted our first butterfly in the garden this week!

butterfly craft

Glitter Butterfly Craft

If you’re a member of the Nurturestore Facebook community you’ll know we’ve been raising five caterpillars over the last few weeks. The girls have been fascinated by the metamorphosis happening right  before their eyes.

nurture

This week though, after watching the crumpled butterflies push out of their chrysalides and begin to flutter around, we took them out into the garden and let Tom, Marina, Flitter, Flutter and Eric fly free. L was especially thrilled to be able to hold them in her hands, and was so confident and gentle with them, but oh so sad to see them go too. She understood they needed to go free, but still…

butterfly craft
Happily she’s got a lovely big sister, who knows that glueing and sparkling is a great way to cheer up ~ and some pretty butterflies were soon being made. With lots of glitter. On the floor. On the day our vacuum cleaner was broken.

butterfly

B’s instructions for making these butterflies is to use a cookie cutter to cut out the shapes from foam pieces. Then cover the foam with lots and lots of glue, before adding your decorations.

butterfly craft

If you use gemstone stickers on one side you can straight away decorate the other side without having to wait for glue to dry.

butterfly

Of course you might like to use glue and glitter and gemstones all together. More is more!

butterfly craft for kids

More butterfly crafts

For more caterpillar and butterfly activities, you might like:

The Very Hungry caterpillar activities

lego math games

Butterfly maths using Lego

An excellent resource of preschool activities, toghether with 10 printables. Includes math, literacy, art, science and play ideas for thre to fice year olds. Click through to download your copy.

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Permission to relax and enjoy :: Play Planner http://nurturestore.co.uk/permission-to-relax-and-enjoy-play-planner http://nurturestore.co.uk/permission-to-relax-and-enjoy-play-planner#respond Sat, 27 Jun 2015 07:30:53 +0000 http://nurturestore.co.uk/?p=25450 Thank you! Thank you SO much for all the replies to my questions about the new book last week. It was so great to hear from so many of you. I love to get a little peek at what you’re playing and doing with your children, and I loved hearing about their adventures with sensory […]

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sunflowers in the garden classroom

Thank you!

Thank you SO much for all the replies to my questions about the new book last week. It was so great to hear from so many of you. I love to get a little peek at what you’re playing and doing with your children, and I loved hearing about their adventures with sensory play. My Super Sensory Invitations to Play ebook is on track to launch in August, and I’ll be including lots of your inspiring quotes in the pages.

Hope you have a great week with your children – Cathy

P.S. Our first sunflower opened in our Garden Classroom this week. Isn’t it pretty!

our Play Planner

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Here’s this week’s Play Planner

Monday’s child is…

relaxing and enjoying the summer! See my 5 must-do activities for every summer bucket list.
simple summer bucket list

Tuesday’s child is…

playing leaf math games
Leaf math games for preschool

Wednesday’s child is…

having fun with jelly/jello sensory play
jelly sensory play with jello

Thursday’s child is…

drawing and writing comics (free printables from Picklebums)
comic-book-templates

Friday’s child is…

enjoying quiet time….shhhhh
quiet time activities books bags

Saturday’s child is…

chilling out with lavender sensory play (see all the ideas at BabyCentre)
how to use lavender sensory play recipes

Sunday’s child is…

working on scissor skills
scissor skills activities with flowers :: learning to use scissors :: flower sensory play

we make brilliant books mobile 

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Leaf math games for preschool http://nurturestore.co.uk/leaf-math-games-for-preschool http://nurturestore.co.uk/leaf-math-games-for-preschool#respond Fri, 26 Jun 2015 17:26:49 +0000 http://nurturestore.co.uk/?p=20226 These simple leaf math games for preschool let you take your learning outdoors for some hands-on fun. Leaf math games for preschool We took our math games outdoors into our Garden Classroom today. Many of the maths lessons we work on can be done just as effectively outdoors. The garden is full of math manipulatives! […]

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These simple leaf math games for preschool let you take your learning outdoors for some hands-on fun.

Leaf math games for preschool
Leaf math games for preschool

We took our math games outdoors into our Garden Classroom today. Many of the maths lessons we work on can be done just as effectively outdoors. The garden is full of math manipulatives!

outdoor math games

Exploring size

The first task I set the children was to find five lovely leaves that got bigger and bigger.

They picked some bay leaves, which had the added benefit of having an aromatic smell to enjoy while we played with them. Any time we add the sense of smell to our activities we’re building in an extra sensory element, which I think gives our brain a little extra zing.

nature play math games

Reading digits

We arranged our leaves in size order and then added the numbers one to five. Our numbers increased in value as our leaves increased in size.

outdoor math games for preschool

Treasure hunting counting

Then we went hunting for treasure to see what interesting things we could find in the garden to match our numbers. All the time we are counting and comparing numbers, using sensory materials that look, feel, and smell really good.

forest school math games

Addition and subtraction

You can also use the number leaves for some adding and subtracting math games.

Use some chalks to write in some plus, minus and equal signs to build some number questions.

The children can use the extra flowers and leaves they collected in the treasure hunt to help them work out the answers. Having real objects to count helps them to learn that the written numbers in their sums really do correspond to real quantities of things.

More creative ways to use nature to inspire learning

Fill your year with hands-on, creative learning inspired by nature. Click through to see our Garden Classroom resource and get your free Garden Journal.

garden activities for kids cta

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5 must-do activities for every summer bucket list http://nurturestore.co.uk/5-must-do-activities-for-every-summer-bucket-list http://nurturestore.co.uk/5-must-do-activities-for-every-summer-bucket-list#respond Wed, 24 Jun 2015 17:42:09 +0000 http://nurturestore.co.uk/?p=25435 There are over one thousand free activities to pick from on NurtureStore. We have suggestions for creative play and learning spanning math, literacy, science, art, craft, and more. But here’s the thing: you don’t need to do them all. And not every day. The resources are here to dip into when you need them, when […]

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There are over one thousand free activities to pick from on NurtureStore. We have suggestions for creative play and learning spanning math, literacy, science, art, craft, and more. But here’s the thing: you don’t need to do them all. And not every day.

The resources are here to dip into when you need them, when you want them, to suit you and your children. So, amid all the planning for summer, and the scheduling, and the trips, and outings, and ideas for things to do, I wanted to give a gentle reminder that we can set the tone for our own summer.

We can make a summer manifesto that suits us. That gives us a few months of fun, and joy, and happy, but on our terms. A pause in the year, to relax and enjoy.

5 MUST-DO summer bucket list activities for families.

Here are my five must-do activities for any summer bucket list

Whatever you have planned, I think these five are essential items for every summer bucket list.

1. Read some books. Which ones? Whatever kind you like. Take a trip to the library and browse a while. Pick one from your favourite author, or something brand new. A book with lots of pictures to daydream over. An information book that looks interesting, whether it’s linked to your school curriculum or not. And how many? Some. Several. Use our printable if you want to keep track – or don’t. Read them on the sofa, in the park, up a tree, in the bath, at bedtime, on a picnic. You choose. Make your summer reading fun, inspiring and gentle. Relax and enjoy

2. Send time outdoors. How many hours? How many do you want? Every day if you like. An hour here and there if that fits for you. A whole day, ten minutes before bedtime, an hour over lunch with a picnic. Breathe in the fresh air, let the children run free. Relax and enjoy.

3. Play. Every day. Let the children choose. We have 100s of ideas for you, but you don’t have to pick them all, or even something each day. Dip in for inspiration, let your children browse the photos and see if it sparks an idea for them. But don’t feel you have to have a non-stop, sunrise-to-sunset summer-camp-at-home planned. Relax and enjoy.

4. Enjoy family time. Have a making morning, or a crafternoon, or a movie night, or sleep away in a tent. Pick the things your family loves, and leave the 101 extra ideas to some other family, no matter how pinteresting they seem. Relax and enjoy.

5. Sneak away. You. Just you. Let the children play without you, or instigate after-lunch quiet-time siestas, or savour half an hour after they are tucked up in bed a night. Squeeze in a coffee, or a slice of cake, or a glass of wine, or a walk around the neighbourhood, or a bubble bath, or a favourite book. Remember this is your summer too. Relax and enjoy.

Permission is granted to relax and enjoy your summer, the way you want.

simple summer bucket list

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DIY baby sensory book http://nurturestore.co.uk/diy-baby-sensory-book http://nurturestore.co.uk/diy-baby-sensory-book#comments Wed, 24 Jun 2015 11:04:19 +0000 http://nurturestore.co.uk/?p=20127 I think a DIY baby sensory book is such a delight, both to make and share. This version is so easy to make and gives you a lovely book to read with your little one, or give as a gift. Here’s how to make it. DIY baby sensory book You’ll need something to use as […]

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I think a DIY baby sensory book is such a delight, both to make and share. This version is so easy to make and gives you a lovely book to read with your little one, or give as a gift. Here’s how to make it.

Homemade DIY senosry book for babies - simple to make instructions and a lovely gift.

DIY baby sensory book

You’ll need something to use as the pages of your book. You’ll want something that’s nice for your baby to hold and robust enough to take a bit of tugging and turning.  I’m using sheets of craft foam, but you might also use felt, fabric or thick card. A rainbow of colours looks gorgeous.

baby sensory bookNext you need to punch a couple of holes in each page, so you’ll be able to fasten them together.

make a baby sensory book

And then you need to add some interesting sensory materials to each page. You can use all sorts of materials in the book, fitting any colour theme you want to work to. Include a range of textures so there are plenty of contrasts for your baby to feel. You can cut your materials into random or geometric shapes, numbers, or the letters of your child’s name.

homemade baby sensory materials

You’re going to be enjoying the book with your child of course, and supervising them all the time they’re reading, but still take care with your choice of materials, and pick things that offer a lot of variety but which you are happy for your baby to handle.

Whatever you pick, superglue them on to the pages of the book so they are secure.

baby sensory materials

What to include in your baby sensory book

Here’s what I went with:

red felt zigzags

orange ribbons

yellow glitter glue, applied thickly to dry into a set of raised loops

green spotty fabric heart

blue foam triangles

purple smooth, shiny card rectangles

how to make a sensory book for babies

Once all the glue is dry, you can use a piece of pretty ribbon to tie all the pages together.

diy sensory book for babies

How to read with your baby

This is such a lovely book to share with your child. Babies are never to young to read with, but take cues from them to know how long to read for – little and often is great.

Snuggle together and explore the pages of the book. We can introduce the idea of looking at pages in turn, and holding the book the right way round, but relax and let your baby enjoy flipping the book if that’s what they like. The main idea is to enjoy time together and introduce the idea that these book things are fun!

Chat together about the things you can see in the book. What colours, shapes and patterns are there? How does each page feel? Remember to not do all the talking yourself, but also pause and listen to what your baby has to say.

More baby sensory play ideas

If you’re looking for baby and toddler sensory play ideas, I think you’ll love Zero to Two: The Book of Play. It’s an ebook full of playful ideas for the very youngest children. It comes with a range of lovely printables, including some super puppets, and you can get your copy here.

baby play activities sensory play

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