Children first explored natural dyes, creating them using a pestle and mortar with food waste such as teabags, spices (turmeric, cumin) vegetables, fruit, plants, flowers and coffee.
Children added water and salt to fix the natural dyes. Some children used their senses and were able to identify the food and link the smell with the scent.
Children created their own colour samples using cotton and linen, dipping the fabrics and painting straight onto the fabrics. Children commented on the colours: raspberry and beetroot making pink, and the brown from the cocoa. Lots of talk and excitement was evident.
This inspired some children to go foraging in the garden to create green: collecting leaves.
This led to children creating their tie dye patterns using fabric dye. They dipped large cotton samples of fabric into dyes and left them overnight.
After they were unravelled and dried, children returned, commenting on the linear and circular patterns. Children used this beautiful fabric as a base for their design. They used fabric paint and fine brushes to paint their patterns. To further embellish their designs children selected beads, thread and some children were able to thread their own needle. Saarah asked why the eye of a needle is called the eye.
Children showed their uniqueness in selecting and placing of their beads, the calmness with which they worked and their ability to sustain concentration. Children showed great pride in their achievements.
The work will be displayed in the nursery for all to enjoy.
At Rachel Keeling Nursery School many of our children come to school with so much knowledge, experience and cultural capital. From the languages they speak, the foods they have been lucky enough to explore, festivals they celebrate and observe and the places they have travelled to.
Recently children were introduced to a beautiful globe that a family has bought for us. They enjoyed handling it (spinning it REALLY fast!!!) and talking about it. A sensitive practitioner took the time to listen to children's ideas and comment and she supplemented this with other representations of the world from maps, to encyclopaedias and an inflatable ball with oceans and countries on it.
Children had group discussions to share their existing knowledge and some used our information books and the internet to further research areas they wanted to know more about. Many children knew their families were from London, Peru, Australia, Somalia and Bangladesh.
Children explored homes around the world, rainforests, oceans, The Statue of Liberty, Africa, Turkey, Antarctica, France and temperatures.
A book was made of the findings and recordings children made. This is now out in the nursery for children to use.
Over the past three weeks children have had ample opportunities to explore electricity and develop an understanding of it. Children showed a good awareness before they started of safety surrounding electricity "It can give you a shock!" Aida said. "It runs in pipes under the ground" Joseph told everyone.
Children also knew some of the common things that needed electricity to work: particularly televisions, toasters, phones and many knew that you cold charge some appliances. Children spend time exploring electrical items us close: deconstructing and reconstructing them using screwdrivers and observing the components.
Next the children were introduced to batteries and how these also carry electricity. They explored electrical circuits, constructing them together with an adult and then the challenge of making their own. Some children powered light bulbs, some propellers and others had a buzzer! Children have been enabled to 'wallow' in this provision for a few weeks and have shown real perseverance and skill. Many have developed a good understanding of electricity during the process.