Category Archives: Early years

Speaking and Listening Activities for the Early Years

When children learn to express themselves clearly and to listen to others, they benefit from improved social skills and greater self-confidence.

Not only do children’s speaking and listening skills differ tremendously when they start preschool, but children also develop these skills at differing rates.  Fortunately, preschool provides an opportunity to reduce any deficits that a child may have with these skills (the earlier the better!), so that children of all backgrounds and learning abilities can succeed in the next stage of their educational careers.

With this in mind, we have developed a resource containing no fewer than 70 speaking and listening activities – so that you don’t run out of activity ideas before everyone has mastered the developmental stepping stones linked to Speaking and Listening for the EYFS Statutory Framework.

These enjoyable and productive play activities help children to develop the skills needed to listen, understand, express themselves, and enjoy language. The vital communication skills covered in this book will not only provide children with the language skills they will need to succeed at school, but they will also enable them to develop friendships and the ability to work cooperatively.

Click here to see sample pages

You can find out more about Speaking and Listening Activities for the Early Years on our website.

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Filed under Brilliant Publications, Early years, Key Stage 0, Key Stage 1, Nursery and Preschool, Primary school, Teaching Ideas

“Can you see the wind?”

Free worksheet series from Brilliant Publications

On a windy day go outside with the children and watch streamers blowing. Ask the children whether they can see and feel the effects of the wind on their faces and clothes. Watch the trees and plants move in the wind. 

Can you see the wind?

This is just one of the activities that can be found in the series of worksheets that we are giving away, free of charge, from the popular volume “Science and Technology for the Early Years (2nd Edition)”. Other activities include:

  • Creating a tiny garden from the worksheet Look down
  • Creating an outdoor themed mobile and drawing or painting a picture of the sky from the worksheet Look up
  • Catching the wind in a plastic bag from the worksheet Can you see the wind?
  • Making a travel agency in the role-play area and making and writing postcards from the worksheet Where do you go for a holiday?
  • And much much more!

Request your copy of the free worksheet series.

Science and Technology for the Early Years (Edition 2) contains 120 science and technology activities for use in the Foundation stage, along with ideas for designing resource areas to stimulate purposeful play. The activities are clearly laid-out with the Purpose, Resources and Safety points given, as well as ‘Challenges’, which can be used to provide a focal point for each activity.

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Filed under Brilliant Publications, Early years, How children learn, Key Stage, Key Stage 0, Nursery and Preschool, Science, Teaching Ideas

Free Speaking and Listening resources

Speaking and Listening EY - talking about family

Free: speaking and listening resources for Early Years

And before we go any further may I stress that the resources we are offering are completely free of charge.  There is no trickery; no requirement to buy or anything like that.

Our aim is simply to show you what is contained in our volume “Speaking and Listening Activities for the Early Years”.  The activities are available directly from me – all you have to do is drop me an email.

And having got the worksheets, you can re-use them as often as you wish.

The activities in question come from a series that is designed to aid the development of speaking and listening skills for children aged between two and five years and in each case the work is linked to the Statutory Framework for EYFS. 

Through these activities the children who use them will gain the skills they need to succeed at school and to help them develop friendships and the ability to co-operate.

Each lesson in the series is complete in itself and includes such topics as adding descriptions to nouns, saying hello and saying goodbye, learning opportunities linked to early learning goals, learning polite speech, objects which naturally go together, and so on.

In the free lessons we focus on helping children understand the issue of friendship, and how friends can be made.  These practical activities involve children having to make friends and share within a totally safe and controlled environment.

For a link to download these lessons free of charge, please visit this webpage.

If you would like to see details of the book from which these activities come from – please take a look at  Speaking and Listening Activities for the Early Years on our website.

You can order the Speaking and Listening Activities for the Early Years on our website for £18.50 as a printed book, £12.99 as an e-book or both for a discounted price of £22.40.

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Filed under Brilliant Publications, Early years, How children learn, Key Stage, Key Stage 0, National Curriculum, Nursery and Preschool, Teaching Ideas

Practical Foundation Stage science and technology

What is the simplest way of organising and undertaking regular practical science and technology at Foundation Stage?

The answer must be to have available a multiplicity of activities in which the children can participate.

For it is only through participating in science and technology, while being guided by adults, that foundation stage pupils are able to have their curiosity stimulated while their knowledge of what science and technology are about grows at the same time.

In short, the doing of science and technology has to be the basis of learning, while the guidance and direction is also always present.

It is to answer this need to find multiple activities which give foundation pupils the chance actively to participate in science and technology, that we have published a new edition of Science and Technology for the Early Years (2nd edition).

And to show you exactly how we meet this aim of practical activities suitable for children at foundation level we have made an extract from the book available, completely free, on line.  

To see one complete project taken from “Science and Technology for the Early Years (2nd Edition)” please click here You will also be able to review the whole index of 100+ activities included in the book here.

This activity is one of over 100 science and technology sessions that can be undertaken in the classroom, which are explored in detail in the book.   Also provided in the book are multiple ideas for designing resource areas to stimulate purposeful play.

You can order Science and Technology for the Early Years (2nd Edition) on our website either as a PDF for £12.99 or as a hardcopy book for £18.50. There is also the option to buy the hardcopy and PDF together at a discounted price of £22.40.

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It’s springtime – gardening activities are a great teaching resource

Gardening – Activities for 3 to 5 year olds

For example, ask the children to fill several plant pots with potting compost and plant seeds or cuttings. Water them and place transparent, colourless plastic bottles which you have cut in half over some of the pots to form mini greenhouses. Explain to the children why you are going to cover some of the pots and leave others uncovered. Otherwise treat all the pots the same: give them the same quantities of water and keep them in the same place, so that they get the same amount of light and heat. Every day observe what has happened to the plants and to the plastic bottles. As an extension activity the children could measure the temperature in the plastic bottles and in the room.

Afterwards talk with the children about which plants have grown the fastest and why that might be. Talk about how plants need warmth to grow and that they grow more rapidly in a warm atmosphere. The plastic bottles have a film of condensation on the inside which helps to keep the plants moist.

Further details about this activity can be found here.

This is just one activity out of many in Gardening: Activities for 3 – 5 year olds, published by Brilliant Publications.

For more information or to order Gardening: Activities for 3 – 5 year old for just £6.50, visit https://www.brilliantpublications.co.uk/book/gardening-102

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A comprehensive French resource with cross-curricular links

BPPetitesEtoiles

Petites Étoiles – 2nd edition 

Introduce French to Young Children through Rhymes, Songs and Activities

★      Introduce young children to French language learning

★      Easy integration into your lesson planning

★      Accessible for specialist and non-specialist teachers alike

★      Comprehensive resource with cross-curricular links

★      Improves pronunciation and develops intercultural understanding

Other reasons for using Petites Étoiles:

  Suitable for children in Reception and Key Stage One

  Based on 18 popular topics, such as toys, food,animals and celebrations

  Each unit focuses on a rhyme or song and contains sufficient activities for at least half a term

  Provides lesson plans and practical, play-oriented activities, ranging from role-play and miming to phonics games and mask making

  Accompanying discs contain audio recordings of the songs, video clips to aid pronunciation of key sounds, as well as a huge bank of reproducible resources, IWB games and much more.

✓  Extension activities for older or more able children

For more information or to order Petites Etoiles for just £37.99, visit https://www.brilliantpublications.co.uk/book/petites-toiles-2nd-edition-794

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Filed under Brilliant Publications, Early years, French, Key Stage 1, Modern Foreign Languages (MFL), Primary school, Teaching Ideas

Springtime can be a source of great ideas for the Early Years

Springtime is fun – the days are warmer and the children feel happier. One idea is to set up a large spring picture on a wall or using powerpoint on a whiteboard, with a tree, pond and field. You can add frogspawn, tadpoles, frogs, blossom, spring flowers, etc as the season changes and as the children learn about them. Attach them with a tacky substance so that you can move them about and change the number of each of them on a weekly or daily basis.

Ask the children to count the number of butterflies, daffodils, tadpoles, lambs, ducks and caterpillars.

Each day or week change the numbers in the picture and ask them to count again.

Download the free worksheet from this blog and when the children are confident, ask them to complete it.

If you like this activity there are more in our book called Springtime Activities for the Early Years.

You can order Springtime Activities for the Early Years in any of these ways:

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