One to two year old garden play.
Thanks Thanks:  0
Likes Likes:  11
Dislikes Dislikes:  0
Results 1 to 10 of 10
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Posts
    1,772
    Registered Childminder since
    Nov 13
    Latest Inspection Grade
    Outstanding
    Post Thanks / Like
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default One to two year old garden play.

    A garden organising day.
    Started this morning with a quick reflection of my summer term garden play in prep for reviewing, reflecting and reorganising for my latest action plan.
    I put my photos into termly slide shows as well as into the children's files so got up early with a cup of tea to view.
    What is blatantly obvious now is that my LO's are a whole lot younger this year. Last year I had 4 term before school children, this year I have two under two's/ just two children that are toddling and for one day, a four and a half year old!
    Last year I worked five days a week for the second half of the term, this year I work just two days....and this will be my last term, some rethinking is definitely needed to keep my enthusiasm and creative learning ideas foremost. I don't want to make / buy too many new things as it is no longer an investment in the business, but I do want to continue my outstanding practise.
    My problem is that I love my garden, I have no children at home, I grow fruit and veg, relax, watch birds, entertain friends and take photos of flowers in my garden. It isn't huge or perfect, more cottage garden and so I have a system of when the children are not here returning it to an adult play area, with little evidence of children. I manage it by having natural resources, little areas, doubling up children's resources for grown up use and putting lots away in our garden room/ now shed. I live next door to a nature reserve, a field and a playground with slide, swing, climbing frames so I don't need these in my garden.
    My photos show that last year the popular play was: making dens, woodworking at the bench, pulley system, water world of children made pipes, small world in various areas and containers, balancing and climbing on logs, walkways and crates, gardening, bird and creature watching and art creating with loose materials and the painting station.
    So far this winter/Spring the current tinies like walking around, carrying balls, climbing on and off small ledges, watering, playing in the sand and the outdoor kitchen, distributing loose materials around the garden and just sitting, watching. When I have had an under two year old before they have enjoyed following the other older children and joining in where they can, on one day a week they have a role model, though her preference is small world and gardening, on the other day, just the two and I am their role model.
    So my first plan is to empty the shed and box up all the resources that are health and safety too old for these tinies which I might sell, give away - leaving some, more geared to her interests, out for the older one. Our half log stepping stones will not be ideal this year, the older one is way beyond and the little ones are not there yet as they roll, so they will go in the wood stack I think.
    I am hoping that as I clear out I will have inspiration of reusing things in a different way.
    Then tomorrow I will think about activities that are geared to these younger children's development, using the resources I have.
    Any ideas would be gratefully appreciated.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Somerset
    Posts
    4,154
    Registered Childminder since
    may 05
    Latest Inspection Grade
    Outstanding
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Are you a member of the Early Years Outdoor facebook page? - my friend Katherine Mounsher set it up and it has lots of ideas on it, Katherine has recently been asking about ideas for younger children as all her older children went to school last year, can't remember off hand what people suggested but it has lots of photos for inspiration (natural resources and loose parts rather than ready made plastic).

    Log into Facebook | Facebook

    I have 3 x 2 year olds today, so we went to the nearby bluebell woods and spent time lying in between clumps of bluebells looking up at the blue sky, fluffy white clouds, inhaling the fragrance of the bluebells and listening to the birds sing.

    We tend to go out somewhere most days to combine exercising the dogs and exercising the children, my garden does have a slide, selection of balls, a sandpit raised up on a table with the usual buckets, containers, spades, spoons, shells, dinosaurs in, water table goes out sometimes or I have another activity table (bit like a tuff tray) with natural resources in it. I also have a big cardboard carpet tube that I put up against the slide and they roll cars or balls down it.

    I do have some pop up tents that I try to encourage them to use as a reading den, but they don't play in them properly as they know they don't fall down (like a laundry drier and blanket would), so I put them away as soon as they start rolling around in them. I also have a big box of wood "brick" offcuts (they would have cost a fortune from Cosy book), they are partly planed so no risk of splinters. I have had tree stump stepping stones and planks for them to balance along, but the stumps have split so I need to find some more - I'm always looking for suitable ones in the woods, my husband says if I carry them, he will help me put them in the car!

    I also have a homemade blackboard with chalks and cloths and find the younger children like using paint brushes and water to paint on the board. I'm a bit like you and planning my retirement (not for another 2 years) but I am reluctant to spend too much money on new resources, I actually cleared out the summer house at the weekend and took lots of "stuff" up the tip, in an attempt to start reclaiming my home.

  3. Likes FloraDora liked this post
  4. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Posts
    3,995
    Registered Childminder since
    sep09
    Latest Inspection Grade
    outstanding
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Im in a similar position in terms of ages of children , most of mine are ready to go off to school , but i have 2 littlies too. My 13month mindee spent most of tuesday with large stones dropping them into an old jam pan of water and watching the resulting splash. Thinking back water is the one thing that has always attracted my one year olds . Water and noise , lids and posts to bang on etc.....

  5. Likes FloraDora liked this post
  6. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Cheshire
    Posts
    37,211
    Registered Childminder since
    1994
    Latest Inspection Grade
    Outstanding
    Post Thanks / Like
    Blog Entries
    21

    Default

    We have smaller ones as well - back to the pram, role play kitchen and lots of sand and water and messy play - big scale painting (we have a board) and chalk - things like that.

    We've put some resources away because we know they will get broken - we'll bring them back out again when the littles are slightly bigger

  7. Likes FloraDora liked this post
  8. #5
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    2,876
    Registered Childminder since
    Mar 10
    Latest Inspection Grade
    Outstanding
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    I love the challenge of adapting outdoor play to meet the needs of a different age group. I remember a while ago I had the opposite problem - I needed to make my garden challenging/educational/fun for an older child (my DD) because it was so well suited to older toddlers and pre-schoolers. Pre-schoolers are probably the most exciting age for outdoor play, don't you think?

    Anyway, casting my mind back to younger toddlers...I seem to remember it being mostly used for physical exploration rather than imaginative or science/UW type of activities. They loved climbing on and off things with varying degrees of help - I did have a small slide, rockers, ride ons, crazy coup car, pushchairs for them to push etc. These were also the things that they all gravitated towards at an amazing playgroup we attended with a fantastic outdoor space with everything you could wish for on offer. They loved tunnels to crawl through.

    I also used to take them regularly to a small local garden area where there was a little, but steep hill and they all, over the years, have loved climbing/crawling up it and then getting down it again in their own way. Over and over again! They would enjoy rolling a ball down it to me as well.

    I had one little one who would spend ages picking daisies in my garden - great fine motor workout. Even before he could crawl he would sit there and try to pick them, really focused. Obviously I had to be right on him in case he popped one in his mouth.

    I moved my sand/water tray onto the floor rather than a stand so that they could do the whole body experience.

    Just yesterday I got all nostalgic because I walked past a piece of pavement on my street where there is a couple of meters of cobbles/large pebbles instead of the usual paving slabs. There is enough paving slabs still to walk on, but my two little one year olds both used to make a bee line for the cobbles and would spend ages walking back and forth on them. I might never have noticed they were there if it hadn't been for my two eagle eyed toddlers. They are closer to the ground at that age I suppose, and not in the hurry to get to places like us. It brought back some sweet memories. So, exploring textures was a big part of their day too at that age.

    Transporting things - using some of the muckier objects that you wouldn't want indoors. Pouring water/water walls/containers with holes. One of mine loved washing surfaces with wet cloths. Large balls and large containers to dump the balls... I'll keep thinking, remembering!

  9. Likes FloraDora liked this post
  10. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Posts
    1,772
    Registered Childminder since
    Nov 13
    Latest Inspection Grade
    Outstanding
    Post Thanks / Like
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default

    Thank you for those ideas, it has given me lots to think about.
    HH - I have requested to join Facebook group, so look forward to that. I found my pile of wood bricks at the back of the shed and brought them forward. Last year I didn't really have enough for 3 oldies to use, but I will add them now to my loose parts resources as there will be for two little one's.
    Good idea to put chalk board out side - I've donated the fold up chalk/white/magnetic one to the shed now and will offer it in different positions with different media.
    Mama2three - mine do like to drop things in to water too, so I've added some bigger containers ( I too had a jam pan that I used as a planter) to the outdoor kitchen and left some empty pots around the garden which will fill with rainwater and they can wander and splash ( under soper vision at all times of course). DH has been tasked with making more banging, beating outdoor items - it's a good job our neighbours work a long day on the day I have the two tinies.
    Sarah- The prays do usually go out, they take them, but I have put the wheel barrows and another couple of home made transporting things vessels into my planning.
    Maza- letting daisies grow is a good idea, DH will need convincing of this as he loves the lawn to be just grass, but it's for a good cause and he can mow over if we have a visitor coming. I know my 18 month will love this activity, just getting him to understand that he can only pick lawn flowers will be my challange. The older children often just used to sit down on our walks in the nature reserve and field and collect daisies, so if all else fails we can do it out of the garden.
    They currently love carrying a big ball or a couple of small ones around so providing the larger containers to drop them in to is a great idea, DH is thinking of making this activity/ the containers noisy in some way too.
    Lots to think about, thank you all.

  11. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Somerset
    Posts
    4,154
    Registered Childminder since
    may 05
    Latest Inspection Grade
    Outstanding
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    I put new sand in my sandpit this week and the children have played out in the garden several times - I'm just wondering how many times I will have said by the Autumn "We leave the sand in the sandpit" after finding the parcel shelf on the Cosy Coupe filled to the brim with sand! I only buy sand from builders merchants so it's not the cost that annoys me, it's the trying to scoop out soggy sand when it has rained.

  12. Likes FloraDora, Dragonfly liked this post
  13. #8
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    2,876
    Registered Childminder since
    Mar 10
    Latest Inspection Grade
    Outstanding
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by hectors house View Post
    I put new sand in my sandpit this week and the children have played out in the garden several times - I'm just wondering how many times I will have said by the Autumn "We leave the sand in the sandpit" after finding the parcel shelf on the Cosy Coupe filled to the brim with sand! I only buy sand from builders merchants so it's not the cost that annoys me, it's the trying to scoop out soggy sand when it has rained.
    Haha! I don't mind them putting sand in the pots and pans because you can just tip them upside down on the lawn to empty, or put them in the water tray to get cleaned - but yes, the crazy coup sand would irritate me too. When I worked in nursery we found it in all of the hand bags from the role play area too!

  14. Likes hectors house, FloraDora liked this post
  15. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Somerset
    Posts
    4,154
    Registered Childminder since
    may 05
    Latest Inspection Grade
    Outstanding
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Maza View Post
    Haha! I don't mind them putting sand in the pots and pans because you can just tip them upside down on the lawn to empty, or put them in the water tray to get cleaned - but yes, the crazy coup sand would irritate me too. When I worked in nursery we found it in all of the hand bags from the role play area too!
    I do try to justify it by saying that the chickens would be poorly if they ate the sand but it doesn't sink in. Years ago we had a gravel path round the circular lawn and the boys loved driving toy diggers in it, the trouble was they would put the stones on the lawn and a couple of times when my husband was mowing the lawn, stones flicked up and chipped the kitchen window glass - so I ended up shovelling up all the gravel and moving it to beside the shed where they could dig as much as they wanted and we block paved the path instead.

  16. Likes FloraDora liked this post
  17. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Posts
    1,772
    Registered Childminder since
    Nov 13
    Latest Inspection Grade
    Outstanding
    Post Thanks / Like
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default

    Thank you for the ideas. I have received some interesting photos on my timeline also from the recommended Facebook page. Thank you for this sign post HH.
    Today will be another garden day as I got rather carried away with my own gardening last week and didn't complete the children's garden organisation. I plan to paint the stone bird bath today. It was my minlaws and DH couldn't bring himself to get rid of it when we cleared her home. It is huge, really sturdy, quite low but fairly ugly so following a Pinterest idea, I am going to paint it and hope it can be used as a dropping stones in activity, shallow water play and not really a bird bath.
    We have a secret little store area at the side of the summer house where I usually store garden pots but since we will be moving after my retirement we don't really need a lifetimes store of plastic pots...they have now been recycled at the tip and I am creating a picture frame on the side of the summer house today that can be used for outdoor painting, I have a big wire work flower that can hang inside it when it's not a painting board...thank you for that idea Sarah.

    I still have a dilemma with my sand as the normal table is a little high for the LO's, DH is exploring making a collapsible frame for a garden tray that we can put sand in, or have it on the lawn. But he has had some new cycling equipt so I expect he will be trying that out as his priority.
    I have to finish it as a) we need to be set up for the summer activities we went to the zoo this week so it wasn't too big an issue, when we played in the garden they dug in the vegetable patch that we were preparing with the the trucks.
    b) we are going to Brighton for a few days to visit oldest son and complete a craft course next weekend and c) I have to make sure I am ready for a food/ hygiene inspection - I thought I might have got away with this as it should have been last summer. I thought our area had probably stopped inspecting but a very nice lady phoned on Friday and made an appointment.

  18. Likes Maza, hectors house liked this post
 

 

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

Quick Links and Advertisements

Important Information Links
Some Useful Quick Links
Advertisements

 

You can also find us on:
One to two year old garden play. One to two year old garden play. One to two year old garden play.

We use cookies to make this site as useful as possible. They are small text files placed in your browser to track usage of our site but they donít tell us who you are.
By continuing to use this site you are consenting to cookies being placed on your computer. Find out more here: Cookies in Use

Childminding Help and the Childminding Forum are part of Childcare.co.uk