Young People at Play

Each morning the little ones have a one hour themed session.  In science they made their own yellow ball from Borax and glue; in art they made some sand pictures; in their explorers class they discovered the joys of a beachy sensory box; during their time as inventors they made a beach in a bottle and finally during their naturalist slot they examined the beach finds with a magnifying glass.  All in all a very productive week.

Young Scientists at Play

This week we decided to move on to doing some experiments with Borax.  Although safe for little ones to handle it is not edible so keep away from their little mouths!  As we were studying Yellow Ball we thought it might be nice to try to make our own home-made one from Borax and glue.

2 tablespoons warm water, 1/2 teaspoon borax, tablespoon glue, 1 tablespoon corn starch, yellow food colouring (I mixed in with the glue)
2 tablespoons warm water, 1/2 teaspoon borax, tablespoon glue, 1 tablespoon corn starch, yellow food colouring (I mixed in with the glue)
  • I gathered up our young scientists:
Raring to go
Raring to go
  • They began to mix:
They mixed the glue with the food colouring
They added the glue with the food colouring to the flour
And gave it a good stir
And gave it a good stir
the water was then added to the Borax and given a shake
The water was then added to the Borax
And shaken up to dissolve
And shaken up to dissolve
  • A teaspoon of the resulting solution was added to the glue mixture:
Everything was mixed up in the beaker until it started to come together
Everything was mixed up in the beaker until it started to come together
  • Once it had bonded it was removed from the beaker and kneaded:
Forming into a ball shape
Kneading and forming into a ball shape
  • The girls then showed off their balls before spending a long time playing with them:
My girls with their balls!
My girls with their balls, which, whilst not very firm, did bounce!

Young Artists at Play

Remember the sand A4 and I made out of salt and food colouring?
Remember the sand A4 and I made out of salt and food colouring?

I thought for young artists hour I would cut out some card into ocean themed shapes, pop the sand into bowls on the table with some glue and brushes and let the girls have a bit of fun with some coloured sand art:

All our budding sand artists
All our budding sand artists with cut out starfish, fish, octopus and shells
Glueing
Gluing
And if you are A4 putting almost ALL of the sand on
Putting almost ALL of the sand on

And after shaking excess off:

Pretty starfish!
Pretty starfish!
All our sand art
All our sand art

Young Inventors at Play

During our inventors hour we made a beach in bottle.  The idea came from the Thai blog .

clear plastic bottle, filled to about 1/3 with water blue food coloring cooking oil to fill the rest of the bottle with possibly some shells, stones, plastic fish, we used small wooden beads in sea theme, with some tiny bits of shell and sea weed we collected from the beach.
Clear plastic bottle, some water dyed blue with food colouring, cooking oil, sand,  some shells, stones, plastic fish, we used small wooden beads in sea theme, with some tiny bits of shell and sea weed we collected from the beach.
The girls put their oil in the bottle using a funnel
The girls put their oil in the bottle using a funnel
They added the water
They added the water
Popped in the sea weed
Popped in the sea weed and the sand
Added the shells, stones and beads
Added the shells, stones and beads
Screwed the lid on tightly and had lots of fun playing
Screwed the lid on tightly and had lots of fun playing
I think I had a moment of brainlessness (not unusual for me!) because I gave the girls wooden beads which of course floated in our sky instead of our ocean!  Oh well they didn't notice!
I think I had a moment of brainlessness (not unusual for me!) because I gave the girls wooden beads which of course floated in our sky instead of our ocean! Oh well they didn’t notice!

They are still playing with these a few days later!  The older ones love them as well.  The sea, sky and sand stay completely separate from each other, not mixing at all.  The viscosity of the oil on movement looks very much like waves in the bottle.  Very clever – except the shells in the oil sky.  Not so clever.

Young Explorers at Play
I had decided that my intrepid explorers would be given an ocean box to delve into and examine.
We gathered up all the bits and pieces we had found at the beach and placed them in a large box
We gathered up all the bits and pieces we had found at the beach and placed them in a large box to which we added water and food colouring
A4 dug straight in, loving every minute
A4 dug straight in, loving every minute
At first B2 was a bit wary of what might be found in the water
At first B2 was a bit wary of what might be found in the water
But seeing the treasures her sister was finding...
But seeing the treasures her sister was finding…
..she took a deep breath and went in!
..she took a deep breath and went in!
tentatively still
Tentatively still
Until the wonders of her own discovers caused such excitement, that she was unstoppable...
Until the wonders of her own discovers caused such excitement, that she was unstoppable…

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Both girls ended up playing with this for well over an hour and afterwards I left them outside and all five children played with them on and off throughout the week.  Such cheap, healthy fun!

Young Naturalists at Play

Beach
Beach
A4 examining the shells and stones
A4 examining the shells and stones

A really good week, which tied in well with our Yellow Ball, beach themed week!

  Tot School  Science Sunday 

12 comments

  1. Hi supermom!I am absolutely hooked on your blog! Took my girls this morning to the beach and we collected items to make a “beach in a bottle” nothing fancy like yours, but they enjoyed the experience. Thank you so much for your ideas and for sharing them! As I said You are a Supermom! Blessings!

    1. Oh, Zee, I’m giggling here at your super mum reference!! My children would fall about on the floor with laughter. I might do lots of activities with the children but I’m that kind of artsy person who MUST CREATE! However, the MUST tidy up part, and PUT AWAY part somehow eludes me!!
      Gary never quite knows what he is coming home to, and is more impressed than he should be when I manage to produce lovely home cooked food. Unfortunately we rarely can eat that food at the table because there are inevitably 4 or more projects in various stages of completion on said table! No, super anything I am not! But I really am tickled pink you enjoy my blog- thank you so much!!

  2. I’ve never successfully made the rubber ball experiment. Ours just ended up a very sticky mess that we ended up giving up on.

  3. …. I want to come play at your house… I have my own labcoat? Seriously! Well done! I love the idea of the plastic box with sea goodies in! Talk about sensory stimulation! You are a wonderful teacher and I love the photos that allow us to share in your girls’ joy and wonder! B2 with the seaweed was beautiful!

    1. I think B2 (having expressed herself with tears for the past two years) is so expressive and it is a complete joy to see her involved, full of wonder and HAPPY!! Her little face shows so clearly what she is feeling, it is very special for me.
      Thanks for popping by. When does your husband return from his contract work? It must be hard to be away from him for so long? I do hope he’s home soon!

  4. If any one had come in our back door 5 minutes ago they’d have been sending for the guys in the white coats. I laughed till I cried at B’s face as she looked into the beach box. That is priceless! I see she deciced it was safe anyhow and seemed to be thoroughly enjoying it. xxxxxxx

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