Animal Topic in Pre-school

Pre-school have been exploring animals as our recent topic and have been busy carrying out lots of different activities.

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We started off with various different sensory activities such as:

  • animal footprints – using mud, sand and paint
  • creating a sensory farm – using Weetabix, porridge oats, cornflakes in which the children explored the different textures and made lots of marks in the materials using all our farm animals
  • animal bath time – we washed all the animals in a big soapy bath to get them nice and clean
  • ice play – the children explored the change when ice melts to water

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We got very creative during this topic by:

  • making our very own snakes – we painted paper plates and later cutting them out into long swirly snakes
  • making snake skin effect pictures, by dabbing our sponges into white paint and then onto sequin waste
  • making our own pig masks as we re-told the story of the Three Little Pigs

During welcome times in the morning we have used the animal snap cards to compare the differences and similarities in the animals. We also had a visit from one of our parents who bought in a real life snake for the children to see! This was very exciting and the children learnt lots of new facts about snakes – what they eat, how they sleep, how long they live.

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The children were very brave when holding or stroking the snake and were very surprised at how dry and cool the snake really felt. From this activity, some of the children bought in photographs of their own pets at home which they shared with their friends.

As part of our routine we carry out lots of PE sessions in pre-school. To adapt it to our topic we carried out a musical animal movement game in which the children had to show us their best dance moves and then when the music stopped we held a picture of an animal up and the children had to act out the movement of the animal. From crocodiles to elephants to penguins to big grizzly bears the children got very physical during this session and we even followed it on outside in the garden.

“Teaching children about the natural world should be treated as one of the most important events in their lives.”

Thomas Berry

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To end our busy topic we held a parent and carer Stay and Play event which was a Teddy Bears Picnic. The children all helped prepare the picnic by making their very own cheese or turkey sandwiches and also mixing all the ingredients to bake some very yummy teddy bear biscuits. In the afternoon the parents and carers arrived for an exciting bear hunt around the garden and then we came inside and sang our favourite songs.

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We all sat down together with our teddy bears to eat all of our yummy tea. To end this we read a very exciting story of Goldilocks and the Three Bears for the parents and carers. The children worked with lots of props and resources to engaged everyone. The children then all took part in acting the story out themselves and re-telling their story in their own ways.

“Play gives children a chance to practice what they are learning.”

Mr. Rogers

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