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Term 2; week 4 & 5

We hope everyone has enjoyed the past couple of weeks including a lovely long weekend. We've had a great end to November filled with lots of fun. At Kidsize we recognise the importance of providing as many play opportunities as possible. We have come up with some fun ways to diversify the play opportunities some of our toys/furnishings provide. We have created fake grass and pebble inserts for our 'tuff tray' which allows for more terrain options when the children are playing with cars and animals on this tray. This also provides more sensory play too. We have also created road and bridge inserts for the children to use how they wish and the children have been enjoying including these in their play.

We have also found ways to diversify our play spaces and provide more play opportunities in our spaces that they typically may not carry out certain play types in. We take pride in promoting 'children's choice' of play and will do everything we can to ensure the children can play with what they choose to in the setting they'd like to enjoy it in. Our Kidsizers enjoy play in our outdoor setting, big hall and upstairs room. Many of our Kidsizers like to enjoy their snack outside and if children like to do crafts but enjoy the atmosphere of the big hall and being near their friends we can easily help them gather the resources they need and set up a crafts area in the hall. One of our Kidsizers did a beautiful drawing of a castle while she was in the hall last week.

We have grown quite the collection of gadgets for our kidsizers to dismantle and learn about. We have some cool old DVD players and remotes that the children have really enjoyed the challenge of taking apart. The DVD players have definitely provided a challenge with their many screws and encouraged problem solving amongst the children. The children get to wear safety goggles so that they can safely use the tool kit we provide for them to use on the gadgets. We have loved seeing some of the older children also show our younger kidsizers how to use the screw drivers and other tools. This provides a great opportunity for the children to have a sense of responsibility which is inline with GIRFEC which uses SHANARRI wellbeing indicators such as the 'safe' and 'responsible.' Check out the children having fun with the gadgets below.

We have been getting super crafty and creative at Kidsize these past couple of weeks. The children have enjoyed scratch art which creates some beautiful rainbow pictures. A couple of the Kidsizers also created mini outfits and a mini bag out of the fabric we have in our craft box. We also had our first Christmas craft which the children were really excited about. They made their own Christmas tree decorations by cutting out and laminating trees that they decorated and then threaded with wool so they could hang them up. The children aren't limited to creating through craft alone however. We also have a club iPad which the children can make iMovies on. Some of our Kidsizers dressed up and came up with their own movie plot and filmed this on the iPad.

Throughout this pandemic the children's wellbeing has been of paramount importance to us. One of the ways we have considered for this is when the children have to use hand sanitiser and wash their hands regularly. We have sought to make this a positive experience which you may have seen through the hand washing activities on previous blog posts. We have ensured the children have positive conversations with staff about hand washing and why this is so important. One of the children even made a cut out hand print and wrote words on the fingers about hand washing which included 'clean' 'happy' and 'soap' etc. It's great to see the positive effect this is having on children during a potentially very stressful time for children at school and club.

We have an abundance of card and top trump games at club which are regularly played with. These games require strategising, problem solving and negotiation to play and are excellent skills for the children to learn. We have also seen children who may not interact very often engage with each other over these games which is great to see as this can build new friendships too.

Our topic this term is 'My Network.' We know that it is very important for children to understand the potential dangers that are present on the internet and how to protect their own privacy. To help the children understand how to use platforms such as social media safely the children were able to see a template of a facebook profile. However this template asked for information that nobody should provide about themselves as anyone can have access to this on the internet. The template asked things such as name, age, date of birth, school, places you usually go, family etc. The children were given these to fill out to see what they would think they should post on a social media platform. The children then had a discussion with staff about why they should not post on the internet where they usually go, where they go to school and home address etc. The children asked some questions about why this was important and the activity encouraged a positive conversation amongst the children.

Check out some more pictures of the children having a great time outdoors.

Of course no Kidsize blog would be complete either without some pictures of more beautiful healthy snacks from the past couple of weeks and the children having fun preparing their own food.

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