Leaf art creations

The transient nature of leaf art ... I love it. I also love how children create little pieces of art everywhere and it is ephemeral and they have no attachment, they just move on. 

It is only me that gets them to take photos (or I take them) and it is only us grown ups that collect their art work - they have no care: they have moved on to the next moment.

The great thing about this activity is that you need to buy no supplies they are in nature and you need no preparation or clean up... just go for a walk with a toddler and pick up some fallen leaves. Oh, and if you think this is not art I suggest you check out this post Nature art inspired by Andy Goldsworthy 

Leaf art creations
Autumn leaf contrasts with the black textured background

Leaf art creations with preschool children
Arrangement of Leaves on ground
Stained glass effect with light shining through
leaf art
Photinia Rainbow
leaves and hessian art and craft
The addition of hessian as a base to work on

toddlers Leaf art
Interesting design at RESURRECTION fern

Babies and the importance of ritual

Babies and  ritual

Imagine what it’s like to be an infant. The world is all brand new — a fascinating, stimulating sensory delight — but the constant transitions, surprises and novelty can be intense and overwhelming. Combine that with the fact that we are growing, changing more rapidly than we ever will, so even what we know can feel different the next day. (Like the way my adolescent daughter feels when she wakes at noon and thinks the kitchen table and her mom have shrunk because she’s grown a half inch.)

We need responsive, reliable parents and caregivers to feel secure, but wouldn’t it also be nice to depend on some daily experiences? To be able to predict, for example, that after our morning meal and diaper change we’ll go to a familiar place to play. Or know that after our dinner and evening bath we will enjoy a book, close the shades, hear a lullaby we’ve begun to recognize and be gently placed in a cozy bed to sleep.

In a life full of changes we cannot control, creating routines and rituals is one of the most respectful and empowering things we can do for our babies... 
read more from the marvellous Janet Lansbury. 
Elevating Child Care by Janet Lansbury

Elevating Child Care: A Guide to Respectful Parenting

Janet Lansbury’s advice on respectful parenting is quoted and shared by millions of readers worldwide. Inspired by the pioneering parenting philosophy of her friend and mentor, Magda Gerber, Janet’s influential voice encourages parents and child care professionals to perceive babies as unique, capable human beings with natural abilities to learn without being taught; to develop motor and cognitive skills; communicate; face age appropriate struggles; initiate and direct independent play for extended periods; and much more.
Find out more about this book


Songs and rhymes to get kids moving

We love kids moving because when they are moving they are learning.  Songs with actions are an excellent learning medium for young children. They are listening and responding, they are anticipating and moving, they are developing their vocabulary and movement skills. Also moving feeds the brain by using and developing neural connections.
Here are some simple songs and rhymes that encourage movement. I have chosen songs that are short and simple so they can be achieved by most children sometimes with a little adaption. Just click on the link to get the lyrics and the activity:

Pretty Pintastic Party


National Literacy and Numeracy Week

National Literacy and Numeracy Week poster 2015

1..2..3.. a..b..c..

Literacy and numeracy do not begin when we start school. They begin in early childhood. 
Literacy and numeracy are not just about reading, writing and mathematics but the many preparatory skills required for developing them. These are often called pre literacy and pre numeracy skills. 
You can introduce these skills to children through everyday activities when reading, shopping, singing or cooking. Some of the skills include:

  • Understanding size, shape, and patterns
  • Recognizing that numbers have a value
  • Identifying quantity such as big and small and more and less
  • Matching things
  • Sorting things

  • pre numeracy game

    This year Australia celebrates literacy and numeracy on the 29 August – 4 September. Digital Literacy is being introduced this year to raise awareness of the importance of digital literacy as one of the foundation skills for the workforce in the 21st Century.
    What will you do for Literacy and Numeracy week this year? You  can join in here

    Playgrounds Part 5

    ideas for natural play spaces
    Here we have focused on pre-school playgrounds, that we love, to give you ideas for your outdoor play area. We love natural play areas for their inventiveness and as they do not have to cost a million dollars. They are also proven to support imaginative play, reduce stress and encourage love of the natural world and help develop language and collaboration skills. Outdoor environments are also important to children's development of independence and sense of wonder.


    Homemade Father's Day gifts from pre-school kids

    In Australia, Fathers' Day is the first Sunday of every September. A chance to thank Dad for everything and share some love and here are some gift ideas for young children to make for their Dads.
    Decorated letters for framed photo

    Paintings and early childhood service ideas

    For Dad's that like to cook - pot some herbs


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