It’s a Bugs Life! Marvellous Minibeasts at Footsteps
Our Footsteps sites are situated in fantastic surroundings which allow us to offer our children access to Forest School, gardens, nature walks and wide-open spaces for running and playing. By the very nature of the environment, we are often joined by various creepy crawlies. This is to the great delight of the children. We have been busy identifying our minibeast friends, talking about lifecycles and using our senses to explore their environment
We have had a ribbiting time looking at the lifecycle of a Frog. There have been lots of activities to jump into. We made our own mini ponds and found different ways to represent frog spawn with chia seeds and bubble wrap. There has been lots of water tray fun as well as some very impressive lifecycle artwork. Of course, we couldn’t learn about frogs be without one of our favourite songs – 5 little speckled frogs. We found lots of ways to recreate this inside and out – balancing on our own speckled logs as we sang!
We were also lucky enough to have our own caterpillars to watch go through the transformation process from chrysalis to butterflies. The children were absolutely fascinated and talked animatedly about the transformation and about the types of plants that they were attracted to in our surrounding area. We enjoyed a butterfly hunt in the garden and even recreated cocoons using cheerios.
Our literacy skills came on leaps and bounds too as we explored the story of the Hungry Caterpillar. We read the story and created some incredible caterpillar, food and butterfly themed artwork. It also allowed us to look at healthy foods – as well as some of our favourite treats.
At Footsteps Watermead we built a wormery. We layered different sand and soil and found some worms to put in from out in the garden. We are enjoying watch how they wriggle and move as well as about what kinds of things they eat and why they are good for soil. We also couldn’t resist reading one of our favourites – Superworm to support our learning.
We used our children’s fascination with ladybirds to support our maths skills. We counted spots and looked at symmetry. We also built our physical and imagination skills building bug hotels from lots of different natural resources like sticks, logs, pallets, grass and leaves. We have had a fabulous time investigating which creatures have come to stay.
On 20th May it was World Bumble Bee Day and it was bee-autiful to investigate our buzzy bees and all about what goes on in their hives. We created our own honeycomb, made bees and painted them with clay, explored a honey “gloop” tray, had honey sandwiches, looked at stripy patterns in maths, watched a special programme about bees on the laptop and learnt how important they are for our gardens and wildlife. We loved their imaginative songs about bees too!
Our mini-adventures certainly bought about a whole lot of fun, imagination, and creativity. A huge thanks to all our teams for their passion for igniting our children’s enthusiasm for the world around us!