This week our topic book was I got the Rhythm by Connie Schofield Morrison. The book discusses different ways of engaging with rhythm such as hearing it, feeling it, thinking about it in our minds and creating it with our bodies - showing us that there is rhythm in everything around us. The book focuses on using onomatopoeias such as tap-tap, clap-clap, shake-shake etc. We chose this topic based on the children’s interest in music and dancing, as well as to support their understanding of rhythm and sound. When reading the story aloud we used to onomatopoeias to practise reading aloud and playing instruments loudly and quietly, fast and slowly.
The topic of rhythm and music was linked to all of our activities this week. We used the the Role Play area to extend the children's knowledge of sounds, whilst also encouraging them to play with a range of different instruments.
To achieve this, we set the area up every day with different musical instruments so that the children had the opportunity to explore various sounds and different types of rhythm through role-play and imaginative play. On Monday the children had the opportunity to play with drums, on Tuesday we brought out shakers and on Wednesday we set up the area with triangles and xylophones!
The children showed great interest in all of the musical instruments and actively engaged with them with enjoyment and enthusiasm. The classroom was filled with music all week by the children creating all kinds of sounds! It was also lovely to observe the children using the instruments to sing along to their favourite songs.
Sounds were a big part of our Focused Activities this week and during Literacy we played Sound Bingo. We encouraged the children to listen to various sounds found in our outdoor environment and to try and identify them! This was a great extension activity from our topic book this week to support development of the children’s listening skills and their ability to distinguish between sounds. The children were able to identify many of the sounds based on their own experiences and were able to successfully match the sounds to the corresponding pictures.
In Science we continued to explore our language skills and understanding of sounds through observing what happened when we filled jars with differing amounts of liquid. Jars were filled full, half full and a little bit at the bottom and we used these to listen to the different sounds the jars made when they were clinked with a spoon. As a group, the children were able to use their mathematical language to identify the differences (full and half -full) in the jars and were excited to observe that the jars created different 'high' and 'low' pitched sounds depending on how full they were.
A big highlight of the week was our Art activity. The children's tasks this week was to create an impression of rhythm using their hands and feet dipped in paint! At first the children listened to their favourite music. They then painted their hands and tapped rhythmically to the music on a large piece of paper. Once the paint had dried we extended this activity by encouraging the children to step into the paint to cover their feet in paint and try to dance the rhythm onto the same piece of paper. This was a brilliant activity to support their children's physical development whilst allowing them to have the opportunity to get messy and creative. The children loved engaging with the music and paint at the same time and some beautiful creations were made!
The children have showed a keen interest in our IT resources including using the keyboards, phones and tills so we set up an 'Office' this week during Free Play in response to the children's requests. The children were busy taking notes, making important phone calls and working away. It was lovely to offer the children an extension of this in our Outdoor Learning Environment where we created a 'Car Wash'. The children used their mathematical language and imaginative play linked to numbers to manage the 'payment' for car washing services and worked brilliantly as a team to clean the cars!