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Muddy Mess and Chalking Fun

We have started our outdoors fun with aplomb these last few days!

After our wonderful Slovenian adventure, full of outdoor fun and interactive city museums, we landed back in our Fenland home last Thursday. With the weather going through a particularly sunny spell, it seemed appropriate to get outside and be creatively messy!

A while back, I bought a tuff tray. I wasn't sure what to do on it or when we would ever use it. We tried painting and sticker craft, both of which were great fun, but I suspect it might just have found its niche as a mud tray.

The boy was amazed. Not only is he allowed to get messy, it's actively encouraged! The tray was already a bit of a lake due to rain from the previous day and I just simply added some mud from the garden. Using the toy gardening tools, we stirred the mud and made some mud pies! Then we could draw in the mud: we made shapes, letters, numbers, squiggles, even a cat! The best thing about it was that we were both doing it together. We were learning together about the properties of mud and what we could make with it. We were on the same level, on the same team. This was no hierarchy; this was parallel learning. This is what it's all about!

Today, under sweltering temperatures, we got out again in the mud to learn and explore. We wondered what might happen if we put flowers in the mud to make petal pictures (works quite well!) and we made chalk pictures on the patio. We coloured in books and we felt play dough in our hands. My toddler took great delight in the fact that he could make shapes in the play dough! He is learning that he can influence the world, that he can do things himself and that he has an impact. He is learning confidence and self-worth. All through fun and play. This is our kind of learning!


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