Toddler planner - Winter and ChristmasThere has been a slight change to toddler girls activity planners, instead of planning for the week, I will be planning for the theme. A typical theme will probably cover between three to five weeks. I will plan one adult led activity each day.
During toddler girl's free play I try and set up some activities which relate to the theme we are working on. These are not adult led activities, they are just extra games or toys to play with and explore freely. There are always other toys around for her to play with.
Adult led activities and how they relate to the EYFS.
PSED - managing feelings and behaviour:
- Make a happy and a sad Christmas tree. Talk about feelings. - I will talk to toddler girl about things that make us happy, and things that make us sad. We will practice happy and sad faces in the mirror before I draw them onto the Christmas trees. Older children could write on a bauble something that makes them happy or sad, and put it on the corresponding Christmas tree.
- Make a relaxing sensory bottle to use when they need to calm down. Put coloured water into a bottle, and add lots of glitter. Encourage the angry child to shake the bottle to let out all their bad feelings. They then need to sit quietly and watch the bottle until the glitter settles again. Hopefully once it has settled, the child will be calm enough to sit down with an adult and discuss their feelings.
Literacy - writing:
- Draw using lolly sticks in home made snow. You could either allow them to draw freely, or encourage them to write letters from their name. Older, more able children could practice writing sight words.
- Mark-making with coloured icicles. Freeze watered down paint in plastic bags, try and make them into an icicle shape before you put them in the freezer. Once they are frozen you can use them to paint with.
Mathematics - shape, space and measure.
- make different Christmas characters by just using shapes.
Understanding the world - people and communities.
- Discuss where Bethlehem is in the world. Try finding Bethlehem on Google earth, or on a globe. Use the internet to find some pictures of Bethlehem. Does it look different to where we live?
- Watch a nativity play. If you can't go to an older siblings nativity play, then have a look on YouTube, or read the nativity story. Talk about the characters, the story. Can the children remember any of the story? Can they retell some of the story back to you?
Expressive arts and design - exploring and using media and materials:
- Make a washing powder bottle snowman. Cut the label off and decorate with googly eyes, buttons and a scary. The lid could be used as a hat.
- Make a hand-print fairy. You could either draw a fairy, or use a foot-print for the fairy. Use two hands for the wings.
- Use a variety of materials to decorate a Christmas stocking.
- Colour in and make your own nativity set.
Playing and exploring - finding out and exploring:
- Play with your nativity set. Have a small house and straw. Play with your child at first, talking to them about the nativity story. After a while quietly move away and leave them to play freely.
- Using a variety of junk modelling items, make a manger for baby Jesus.
Creating and thinking critically - having their own ideas:
- Try to build an igloo with a variety of boxes and plastic containers.
- Playing with animals, talk about hibernation. Try and find somewhere safe for the animals to hibernate.
Themed toys and activities to put out during free play:
- Red and green play dough, include Christmas cutters, tinsel and sparkles in tubs, so children can add them to their play dough.
- Sellotape contact paper onto the table. Put pom-poms and sequences into containers.
- free colouring on Christmas templates.
- Shaving foam with animals.
- farm set with cotton wool snow.
- A large box cut into a sledge shape.
- Different lengths of tinsel.
- wrapping paper.
- Rolls of cheap toilet rolls; pretend its snow.
- Christmas stories in the book area.
- Ice in water tray.
- Babies and boxes with hay.
- Paper or plastic nativity set.
- Dressing up - try and include angel wings, Santa hats, king hats, tea-towels for shepherds.
- Train set (polar express)
- Stockings and a variety of small toys.
- Finger puppet Christmas characters.
- Large A4 size footprints - animal foot prints in the snow.
- White socks and scrunched up paper.
- Christmas treasure chest.
- Pipe cleaners and beads.
- Hole punched stars, thread and child safe needles.
- Indoor snow in the sandpit (cornflour and shaving foam)
- hats, gloves, and scarves.
- Large sack and a variety of toys.
- A cardboard box with a hole cut out. Have a selection of soft balls, stuffed white socks and pom-poms.
- A festive sensory tub in the sandpit. Try adding frozen rice, pine-cones, candy canes, small bells, small balls, gift bows, sequences, stars...
- Hang up a kids washing line. Supply a basket with pegs and paper stockings.
- Cut out star shapes out of a bath mat. Turn them upside down, so the suckers are at the top. Supply marbles for the children to balance on the suction cups.
- Cheap crackers.
- Painting in the snow.
I hope you have enjoyed some of these activities. Please feel free to share your own ideas in the comments section.
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