Every so often we try and spend some quality one on one time with each of the kids. We select activities and things to do that we think THEY will enjoy the most and then we go off and have a Special Day.
This time, I picked “Go Ape” for my son.. check out what he thought!
This is at the Go Ape at Alice Holt Forrest – a beautiful venue. Afterwards we met with friends, had a picnic and explore what Alice Holt had on offer.
We live close enough to Wimbledon Common, to go and visit it on occassion and have a good walk around it. When walking in woods with younger children however, it is good to often have some sort of purpose (having said that, they love running around, picking up sticks, climbing up trees and exploring regardless).. so.. recently we have been reading The Wombles of Wimbledon Common books. It talks about the Wimbledon Common Windmill, the Goluff (aka Golf) course and Queen’s Mere pond. It was exciting to visit the common with these locations in mind and to see whether WE could spot a Womble…
Here is how we did – how many did you spot?!
If you are not familiar with The Wombles, do check out the stories, they are making for a great chapter book for us at bedtime at the moment (the kids are aged 5 and 7yrs). Really sweet!
Check out these affiliate links for book info US readers read about The Wombles here , UK readers here.
Soooo, we have literally just finished our two week Easter holidays and living in London, we have been busy busy busy with the kids. London has SO MUCH to offer for kids – with its many galleries, museums, fountains and parks. It really is an amazing city for green spaces in particular! As my kids go to a space tight local London school, it is important for us to go out and about in the holidays and enjoy nature – whatever the weather. Luckily for us, we were blessed with fine weather, which made it even more enjoyable.
One great destination for Kids in London is, Kew Gardens in Surrey. Yes, technically it isn’t London anymore, but it is certainly is part of the “Londoner’s to do list”. The great thing about Kew Gardens is, that kids go free! Also, like many London venues and destinations, Kew Gardens has been working hard over the last few years to make it a place to go with kids all year round. It is a wonderful place to visit as an adult interested in plants and fauna, but now it is also a great place to go with kids.
Over Easter, they had a fun Timmy Trail going…
The kids had maps and had to find Timmy Stations all around the gardens. It is a great way to keep them moving and exploring, as well as learn about the gardens themselves – each station not only provides the much coveted Shaun the Sheep stamp, but also information about plants in the immediate area. We particularly enjoyed discovering the “Snake Heads” flowers.
There was also a big “attraction” tent with activities (such as wellie throwing and cabbage rolling), which looked great fun and were busy indeed, BUT we were actually so busy with the rest of the park, that we did not end up having a go.
We spent a total of 5 hours at the park and visited the Tree Top walk way (be sure to go to the little “bug tunnel” at the foot of the stairs, for info on creepy crawlies.
We went to the glass houses and searched for cocoa beans and unusual flowers. We LOVED all the beautiful Spring tulips on display, as well as the stunning blossom trees. Aaaaah Spring. A truly wonderful time to visit Kew Gardens.
Having said that, there is always something to see and do at Kew Gardens – there is a play ground and soft play area if you need some “classic” child distractions. There are plenty of grassy little verges for the children to do some rolly pollies down (nothing better than rolling down a grassy hills). There are always some flowers in bloom and of course the glass houses to explore.
I am looking forward to Winter, when they have a special magical light trail on too (new last year and we missed it!!! But it looked amazing).
And whilst we enjoyed a “day out in the park”, the kids did actually get to appreciate and discover some beautiful plants too.
Disclaimer: Kew Gardens invites us to spend the day with them and write about our experiences… BUT as it happened, we had already planned to visit these holidays already! It just meant that I took more photos than usual!! 😉
Pip Squeak aged 5, is now learning about 3D shapes. Well actually, she is learning about 2D shapes AND 3D shapes at school. As part of this maths learning activity, the children were asked to review the different 3D shapes with their parents and then go on a shape hunt around the house.
With the advent of smart phones, taking photos is a really easy activity for kids and a great way to get them “into photography”. Not only, are they learning about recognising and identifying basic shapes, but they also get to use modern equipment and think about their photo compositions (and whether or not their pictures are in focus in the first place!).
We looked at these 3D Shapes frm JustTeachIt.co.uk and talked about the properties of each. Pip Squeak then grabbed my smart phone (quite happily) and went off to find some shapes.
We found plenty of circles:
lego brick (we discussed whether or not this was in fact a cube, but decided that not)
And some cylinders
Loo roll (well that bit of hilarity went down well)
We didn’t get too much further than this on THIS occassion. What I should have done, I should have printed out the above sheet and got Pip Squeak to tick off the shapes as she found them. That would have encouraged her to do more I think.
Regardless, I think she did a great job – discussing and looking for 3D shapes, as well as practicing her photo skills!
The Girl has been “doing” Pirates at school – they have a big ocean and under the sea theme going over the coming weeks and all the children seem to be really enjoying it! Next week they get to dress up as Pirates, Mermaids or underwater creatures and they are all looking forward to it very much! We have been exploring lovely pirates books and had a fun little pirate craft to do (as part of their homework) – the kids got to dres up their own pirates using a basking “gingerbread man template”. A simple activity, that looks wonderful. You could make a set of these and string them up as pirate bunting, or stick them onto the front of cards a pirate party invites.
We also read some lovely pirate books.. here are some of our favourite:
A great book all about a little Pirate girl Molly. The meany pirates capture Molly and try and hold her for ransom.. but little do they know who her mum and her auntie and her cousin and her granny and and and.. are… they are the fiercesome pirate ladies. A great story for aspiring pirate girls. You see, you don’t have to be a boy to be a pirate.
This book went down VERY well when I read it to The Girls reception class.
A book written in prose, this tells the story of a little girl who is the only one in town to befriend the new temporary neighbours. The rest of the town are filled with prejudices and dislike for the neighbours, only to find that they are hardworking, kind and generous. A great moral to the story.
This is super easy to set up – you will simply need some crafty bits and bobs – fabrics or coloured card, some glue (glue stick should work fine too), some gems if you have them, some foil for sorts… feathers would be great for hats or parrots…. wool for beards… see what you have and let your imagination run wild as you create your very own PIRATE! Harhar.
After all our pirate girl books, The Girl, still decided on a big bearded boy pirate.. but that is just fine! Have a great piratey day!