Looking out the window at grey skies and cold winds? Why not start thinking ahead to brighter days of daffodils, bluebells and birdsong with some seasonal outdoor activities?
Spring is here! Almost. Well, it’s on its way. We have it on good authority.
So, in preparation, here are some great ideas for outdoor play and learning once the weather gets a little warmer and the days a little brighter.
This one comes all the way from Raleigh, North Carolina (yes, named after Sir Walter Raleigh), and it’s not just one activity, but a list of weather-dependent activities. Guess North Carolina’s April weather is as unpredictable as ours.
There’s everything from puddle play and watercolour artworks using the rain to kite flying and making plant pots from newspaper.
The ground is dry, get the chalk out! Rather than just let children run riot with playground chalk, why not have them create their own world in which to play?
Talking of creating your own world, head out into nature and find the perfect spot for a miniature fairy garden. They may be a bit dainty to withstand heavy weather, but they can be great fun to put together and look great when complete (just remember to take a photo afterwards lest the rain and wind return the next day).
Want some inspiration? Check out some of the best entries from this 2014 competition
Let children explore all the new things the season has brought with it, then have them make imprints in clay that can be baked and kept.
All you need is an orange, some wool, a needle, a knife (obviously you’ll be doing the parts with the sharp pointy things), a spoon and some bird seed. You can refill the orange peel until it has degraded, when you can start all over again. Providing your school budget stretches to more than one orange, of course.
Take a quick trip to your local DIY store and pick up as many of those little paint swatch cards as they’ll let you take without thinking you’re up to something. Pick nice seasonal colours where possible then let children go exploring for a match out in nature.
Who doesn’t love a good sensory tray? Gather all your favourite spring items like carrots, flowers and ducklings (OK, maybe live animals are out of the question) and bury them all in soil (actual soil or a substitute like dyed rice as used here) then let the fun begin.