I just LOVE Autumn! I love all the craft and learning ideas that it brings especially when it comes to conkers. This Blog features some ideas on how to use your conkers.
Although here in the North of England the weather has began cooling down …. A LOT! We have been spending lots of time outdoors still and this has opened up lots of learning opportunities. We are so lucky we have lots of beautiful parks on our doorsteps and the seaside too.
While we’ve been out on our walks we have talked about the colours we can see outdoors and talked about the differences we can see in the environment now the seasons have changed. All these opportunities for learning are easily brought about by the environment and my little girl doesnt even realise she is learning so much, its all just fun and adventures for her. She always asks if we can go on adventure when I mention going for a walk. To her it probably is an adventure because at 2 years old she sees something different most times and also likes to talk about things we have seen or done previously, especially if we visit the same place we have been before. It gives her the opportunity to recall things at familiar places too.
On to the Activities…
This weekend we went out “Coconut” picking (don’t you just love 2 year olds little minds!). That’s Conker picking to me and you. We have used them for lots of different Crafts so far. We collected ours in Jesmond Dene, Newcastle Upon Tyne. With our Welly boots, waterproofs and wrapped up warm we headed out excitedly with a loot bag ready to fill.
Decorating & Threading Conkers
You can paint them to decorate them and using them to thread onto string but it still works even if you leave them natural. Doing this encouraged the use of fine motor skills during the painting while they hold and manipulate the conker. Also threading is great at encourage fine motor skills and hand eye coordination. We drilled the holes and just used an old shoe lace and some string for threading.
Play dough and Salt dough Conker shell Snails
After painting lots of Conkers I was left looking for lots of things we could do with them when I found this idea. We used the conkers with our home made play dough (recipe/method here) and made snails with their shells made from conkers. I also made some salt dough so we could bake some snails to give to our loved ones……Can you tell we collected tons of conkers!?!
I created this activity by just making some circles on the paper and then providing only the right amount of conkers in the tray. I used this in a mixed ages class so the learning opportunites were open. The younger children enjoyed matching the conkers to the circles and the older ones began using the conkers to count. This could also have encouraged colour recognition by painting the conkers to match the coloured circles on your sheet.
While we’ve been out and about we have been collecting leaves to bring home. We have made some lovely college pictures when with them when we’ve got home. The colours are just beautiful and my daughter loves hunting through the fallen leaves to find different colours and sizes. She searched so long to find a red one.
Dont forget if you have some left over conkers, pop them in the corners of your rooms to keep off the spiders. *I have no idea if there is any truth in this but I’ve read it lots and this year I am giving it a go 🙂
If you try out this Easy Letter Activity at home let me know how it went or if you tried anything different. Post on my Facebook page with your stories or tag us in your posts Facebook tag @LittleLearnersNT / Instagram @little_learners_north_tyneside or use #littlelearners
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