Monday, 22 August 2011

Teddy's Wash Day

We are taking care of Barney, the pre school bear, this week.  This morning we decided that Barney's clothes needed washing so we headed out to the garden to wash his things.
Warm water and soap solution are all we needed.  Both children had fun scrubbing his clothes.
And then wringing them out.
Then they realised they could use the clothes like sponges to transport water from the water tray to a watering can a few metres away.
Then to throw water across the garden.
Then they hung them out to dry in the sun.
Barney just sat and watched!
This is something I remember doing as a child.  Washing dolls clothes in the garden.  Water play and role play combined.
We are recording all the things we do with Barney to write into his book of adventures.  Boy only has two weeks left at nursery before he leaves for good to go on to primary school so he's very keen to give Barney a great time.  So far he's been shopping, played mini golf and helped to build some shelves with Daddy.

Saturday, 20 August 2011

Holiday Diary Scrapbook

If you read our blog regularly you will know we recently went on a family holiday camping near Scarborough.  Both children kept things from the holiday to make scrapbooks to record what they did.  We finished them off this week after finally getting the photographs printed!  I bought a cheap pack of exercise books and used two of these.
We collected postcards, receipts, paper bags, leaflets, mini golf scorecards and took plenty of photos to stick in.  Both children took their books into nursery to show their friends and to talk about their holiday.
I wrote captions for some of the photos to add extra meaning.  I asked Boy to describe somethings and then recorded his own words.
This is a lovely thing to keep and look back on in years to come.  It was something to focus on whilst we were away, remembering to take pictures and collect things and stick them in.  It also provided a great opportunity for the children to talk to their friends and teachers about their home life.  Developing skills in literacy and speaking and listening too.

Thursday, 18 August 2011

Homemade Play Food

Having made salt dough models with the children at home the other day I made these pieces of play food in the same way.  These are for the new shop role play area we are creating at nursery.  We realised much of the play food was missing so I decided to make these.  For the recipe for salt dough take a look at this.
A selection of bakery items including jam tarts, biscuits, cupcakes, swiss roll and gingerbread men.
And some fruit and veg; apples, pears, bananas, tomatoes and potatoes.
Obviously you know your children and if they are likely to put things in their mouths then this wouldn't be such a good idea.  We will be using these with children 3 years and over.  I painted them with ready made toxic free water based paint from tesco.  I mixed the colours and it was fairly easy.  The children helped me make some bread and pies yesterday at the nursery so our shop should be pretty well stocked by the end of today.  I've also collected a few boxes (cereal, egg, toothpaste etc..) too!  I really enjoyed making these actually, very cheap and easy too!

Wednesday, 17 August 2011

Polystyrene Printing

My husband was planning a trip to the dump last weekend and I wondered if we had any polystyrene left from packaging.  I asked him and he said there wasn't anything.  I intended just to save any we might get in the future put he came back from the dump with a car full of the stuff!  He had seem a man getting rid of a load and asked him for it!  We used it this morning for some printing.
I cut it into hand sized chunks and away we went with all the different paints we have in the house.
Some nice results and the best part was not having to wash it afterwards, I just threw it away.  I must say though, it is quite messy when you cut it up and you will need to vacuum afterwards.  Was good fun though and something both Boy and Girl could do in their own way.

Tuesday, 16 August 2011

Chocolate Butterfly Cakes

Boy was keen to bake yesterday after dinner and we decided on chocolate butterfly cakes.  Here's how we did it.  Ingredients; 100g butter, 100g caster sugar, 2 eggs, 75g self raising flour, 25g cocoa.
Beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy.  Then add the eggs, one at a time, and beat into the mixture.
Then add the flour and cocoa, a few spoonfuls at a time, and gently mix in using a metal spoon.
Then place a teaspoonful into cake cases.  I got 15 cakes out of this mixture.
Bake for 10-15 minutes in the oven at 180 degrees.  Allow to cool.
For the icing you will need; 50g butter, 75g icing sugar, 25g cocoa, a spoonful of milk.  Beat all the ingredients together until light and fluffy.
 To make the butterflies cut a disk from the top of each cake using a sharp knife.
Cut the disk in half.
Put a spoonful of icing on the top and then arrange the 'wings' on the top!
Dust with icing sugar and you're finished.  A nice alternative to a plain butterfly cake.  These are also a big hit with Daddy!

Monday, 15 August 2011

Decorating Salt Dough

This morning we finished off the Salt Dough Shapes we made yesterday.  We used a variety of ready made paints and also some glitter paints and sequins.
They each painted a tealight holder.
As well as the different shapes Boy made yesterday.  Boy was very keen to stick to just the one colour on each of his shapes whereas Girl enjoyed using lots of colours on hers.
The finished tealight holders turned out well I think.  We may put glue or varnish over these if the paint rubs off to the touch, if not we'll just leave them as they are.