Reay Under 5’s – Fun in the mud!

The following blog article was submitted by Yvonne Morris, Senior Early Years Practitioner at Reay Under 5’s:

We were lucky enough to get another area for the children to use for outdoor learning and play. Our dads recently cleared this area for us, made some new fencing and spread bark chips. We purchased a new Mud Kitchen and new sandpit for the children and now have a super outside area which will support the development of children’s curiosity and exploration.

Wow, what fun they had investigating and exploring. Lots of digging, pouring, filling to further develop their mathematical learning. As well as mixing mud and sand they used their imagination and senses as they made ‘pancakes’ and ‘blueberry pies’. The play has led to further development and fantastic communication as they extend their language skills using descriptive words whilst sharing with staff and peers what they are doing: ‘I am mixing all the ingredients’,’ it is gooey’. The benefits of our new area will be fantastic for the children’s development in so many ways giving them endless opportunities.

Reay Under 5’s have fun in the snow

The following blog article was submitted by Yvonne Morris at Reay Under 5’s:

Here at Reay Under 5’s we are lucky enough to have access to a field a short walk from Playgroup.


We made the most of the snowy weather. There is nothing healthier than wrapping up and getting out to play in the snow.


The kids had a blast running around in the large safe open space. They worked together pulling the sledge, made snow angels and even did a bit writing in the snow!

Reay Under 5’s – outdoor play and the fire department

Who needs toys!

The children had the opportunity to play with a variety of objects outside. They worked together pushing and rolling the big tyres up and down the hill. This helped children develop their physical skills through movement and also helped them learn about safety, managing risk and working together. They all interacted well, using their imagination. The tyres were then put on top of each other and made into a fire, then one wee boy shouted into the tyres and said, ‘I hear an echo’. How great is that! They even used bits of wood to walk over, developing balance and coordination.

Reay under 5’s Fire Department to the Rescue! 

After the children’s police interest changed, they took a vote on whether they would like to learn about fire or the ambulance service. Fire won the vote 6/3.  This encouraged the children to make their own personal choice.

The home-corner was turned into a Fire Department. The children explored books, jigsaws, DVDs, used fire vehicles and dressing-up in their play. This time we made a large fire engine using a large box and various recycled materials to create this fantastic vehicle. There was lots of collaborative work going on, problem-solving and discussions on what was needed to make our fire engine. They also made individual pictures, coming up with their own ideas on what they needed, further developing their fine motor skills and creativity.

We added more work to our Floor Book on ‘People Who Help Us’. Again this activity covered many areas across the curriculum, e.g., Health and Wellbeing, Expressive Arts and Technologies.

Reay Under 5’s become police officers for the day

The following blog update comes from Yvonne at Reay Under 5’s:

Hello, hello what’s going on here?

The children of Reay Under 5’s have been learning about the police.  The home-corner was turned into a Police Station with a jail for the baddies! Lots of dressing up, co-operative and imaginative play going on.

The children came up with their own ideas for their play, they even made a police van, working out who was going to be the driver and traffic control. They did lots of investigating and exploring, solving clues to find missing things, they even had to find Cocoa the missing puppy! We looked at the equipment police use in their job and talked about the work they do. The children looked at books and watched a DVD on the laptop.

We then decided we would make policeman and a police lady collaboratively. The children also made some fantastic individual pictures of ‘police’, some telling us imaginative stories to go with their pictures. We also started a floor book with some fantastic input from the children sharing what they know and what they have learnt. We covered lots of areas across the curriculum during our time looking at the work police officers do.

Penguin Adventures with Reay Under 5’s

The following blog post was submitted by Yvonne Morris from Reay Under 5’s:

Penguin Adventures


One of the children took in a book about The Emperor Penguin which started an interest.

The children learnt lots of amazing facts about the Penguin such as where they live and what they eat and how tall they are. We looked at some really interesting books story and factual books. Through discussion with the children they decided they would like to make a life sized Emperor Penguin, the children decided they would sponge paint. After the wonderful Penguin was made we thought we would compare their size to the Penguin. We even played a Penguin gym game children made own choice and actions for the penguins to do, such as jumping, hopping and swimming. We provided lots of learning opportunities across the curriculum.

And Other Animals Too…


The children showed an interest in animals following on from our Penguins. We provided lots of resources relating to this, such as Vet Set, Playmobile Zoo, jigsaws and table top games and learnt the song, ‘We are all going to the Zoo’.

penguin-measuringThe children got really interested in animals, they all choose an animal and had to find out how tall it was at home, great way of involving parents in their child’s learning. We had hedgehogs, cow and a giraffe to name a few. We then looked at this information with the children. We measured it out first on the floor using masking tape and chalk. We then had fun seeing how many children were as tall as the animals. We then measured out a roll of wallpaper printed out pictures of animals and measured again. We left this on floor for children to observe and play with. Some children used their imagination as they played with this, using Vet set, Fantastic.

Lots of great role-play going on, children using their imagination as they played together co-operatively. They had the confidence to share their thoughts and ideas as they played together in our local Vet Surgery. Good use of play equipment developing their fine motor skills as they bandaged up their animals. Communicating well to each other working out who was going to be the vets and who was going to be working in the reception. Again lots of learning across the curriculum.