Saturday, 28 September 2013

Trapped grasshoppers and missing onions

There exists an extremely popular activity, which involves large numbers of little learners and a multitude of 'things'........ big and small! 

This particular activity is carried out pretty much on a daily basis, right throughout the setting, and frustratingly and inexplicably far from the gaze of all the grown ups at Sunnyside School.   

Whilst the team has had many years of experience dealing with the aftermath of this secretive activity, to date, not one single team member has ever spied a little learner in the act!  

So what on earth is this secretive activity which requires cunning, perfect timing and sleight of hand? Well, the answer is....... posting. 

The subject of posting has been touched on before in previous Sunnyside stories, see Sharp teeth and little postman and Dominoes and Little Mo and it was here that we first read about a little learners' love of posting things! Given the opportunity, little learners will post anything, anywhere. In the home corner for instance, it is common place to find a mixture of sea creatures and wax crayons in the microwave, or a plastic grasshopper jammed inside a teapot and the team barely raise an eyebrow when they find themselves struggling to release a wedged Lego man from the very depths of a toaster! 

When it becomes necessary to move furniture (in the hope of finding whole puzzles, let alone any missing pieces), the team know to braise themselves in readiness for what is about to come cascading out. Lurking within the tumbling mound of 'things' will be every piece of construction known to man, along with small world figures, play food, play money, felt pens, glue sticks, cars, counters, dice, pegs and much, much more.   

To capitalize on this mania for posting, the team created "Lester the hungry lion", a literacy resource whereby little learners could post sounds and simple cvc words into his gaping jaws. When he was introduced to the little Reception learners of last year, they immediately seized the opportunity to post their learnt sounds and words, however, they also took full advantage of Lester's wide and smiley jaws to post everything from a pig puppet to a cash register!

So here we are just a few weeks in of a brand new academic year, with a brand new contingent of little learners, and already posting is in full swing. Miss Kind was able to confirm this today, when she found herself trying to retrieve half a dozen pirate figures and a plastic onion posted deep inside the garden hedge! 


What we love the most,
Is finding things to post.
And we post things almost every single day.
We'll post things anywhere,
We honestly don't care,
And when we've posted things we tend to run away!

When the Lego is all gone, 
Well, that's when we move on,
To look around for other things to post.
When the grown ups have had enough,
And start asking, "Where's our stuff?
We say, "We dunno, it must have been a ghost!"

Now, sometimes things are such,
Where we've posted far too much.
So the grown ups need to have a word and say.
"Let's get everybody clearing,
Until things start reappearing,
And no one is allowed to run away!!!"

Plastic sharks and plastic ants,
Both retrieved from someone's pants,
Heaven only knows who posted them down there.
We're not sure what to do, 
With what's been posted down the loo,
Just fetch the rubber gloves we're going to need a pair!"

When all the tidying is done
There'll be no more posting fun,
Comes the warning when it's home time every day.
But, then we get the posting itch,
And our fingers start to twitch,
So we post a little something on our way!!!

"I don't do posting any more.... do you?"

Saturday, 21 September 2013

PE perils and tricky trousers

Today the team took a deep breath and donned their brave trousers in preparation to meet their nemesis.............A PE session! 

In actual fact, it isn't the act of supervising a PE session that sends team members clambering into cupboards to cower and hide away. Oh no!.... It's the business of changing thirty eager and excited little learners into their PE kits that will do the trick!

PE kits are fine and dandy, all the while they remain safe and sound, tucked up in their respective PE bags and left dangling undisturbed on their corresponding pegs. However... sooner or later, it is necessary for them to be removed, opened and emptied. When this happens, things are never, ever the same again!!! 

Once released from their cosy drawstring home, plimsolls, shorts and polo shirts take it upon themselves to either jump from one PE bag to another, disappear down the back of storage cupboards, cram themselves into puzzle draws, or worse, leave the classroom altogether, never to be seen again!  

It's a PE nightmare! But one that must be faced head on, hence the very definite need for brave trousers!

And it is the subject of trousers coincidentally, that has inspired Mrs Crayon's rhyme and doodle today.

Imagine this scene if you will. One classroom filled with thirty weary, and half changed from PE, little learners. Sixty discarded plimsolls, dozens of scattered shirts and trousers, umpteen pairs of mismatched shoes, and one perplexed and somewhat agitated little Reception Sunnysider. 

"These are not my trousers!" Shouted he, most insistently from across the classroom. When Mrs Very Jolly emerged from under a table wielding a left plimsoll, she was met with this little learner furiously brushing the top of his leg, as if trying to shoo away something from the trousers he was wearing. "What is this on my trousers?" He demanded, pointing to the offending "thing" clinging to top of his trouser leg.  

The answer to this trouser mystery lies within Mrs Crayon's rhyming ditty. So without further ado, let's take up, and round off today's story in verse....... 

Troublesome Trousers

I'm changing from PE 
And I'm all in a tiz,
I've found something on my trousers,
But I don't know what it is.  

It's rather large and flappy,
And I don't like it there OKAY!
So PLEASE will someone do something
To make it go away!

My teacher hears me fretting,
She calls, "Let me help you poppet,
You've got your trousers inside out,
That flappy thing's your pocket!"

"These might be my trousers.....but they're definitely not my pockets!

Sunday, 15 September 2013

Sticky hair and grumpy fish

On your marks.......get set.........GO!

And they're off! The Sunnyside little learners have left the starting blocks and they are now hurtling towards heaps of fun, and a multitude of exciting learning experiences. 

In order that the coming days and weeks run smoothly and safely for everyone in Reception, the immediate focus is very much on settling in procedures, establishing routines, and little learner involvement of classroom rules.

There's one routine that the team are always most keen to establish as quickly as possible, and that is the business of toileting and hand washing. The team therefore set aside plenty of time throughout the day to support the little learners in becoming toileting experts. 

This morning the team supported small groups of little learners in a hand washing activity. Team members talked about the importance of washing and drying hands thoroughly and helping to keep the toilet area clean and tidy. That is to say, learning to throw paper towels in the bin as opposed to throwing them next to it!     

It was during one of these demonstrations (with Mrs Very Jolly leading), that a sudden outburst of raucous laughter rang out from the toilet area. When Mrs Caring went to investigate, she found a group of little learners hanging over the sinks in absolute hysterics. Among them, and weak with laughter, was Mrs Very Jolly with her fringe stuck firmly to her forehead, due to the copious amounts of liquid soap that it appeared to be coated in. Mrs Caring took one look at the helpless bunch and made the decision not to ask any questions, instead she pretended she hadn't seen a thing, and left them all to it.

At the same time, and just across the hallway, Mrs Crayon was carrying out her own hand washing demonstration, when a little learner emerged from one of the toilets adjusting his trousers. "I saw an elephant in a pond!" Said he, turning to Mrs Crayon for some help to roll up his sleeves. 
A little perplexed by this comment, Mrs Crayon felt she needed some clarification.
"I'm sorry poppet, did you say an elephant in a pond?" "Yeah!" Replied the little learner, squelching liquid soap between his clasped hands. "Not a real elephant"! Queried Mrs Crayon. "Yeah!" Nodded the little learner adamantly.
" saw a real elephant........ in a real pond." Stated a skeptical Mrs Crayon. "Yes!" Said the little learner, his tone now suggesting that he was becoming a little irritated by Mrs Crayon's apparent lack of understanding. "So this pond, is it in your garden at all?" Asked a still puzzled Mrs Crayon.  "Don't be silly!" Said the little learner, "I haven't got a garden!" Sensing this strange conversation involving elephants and ponds had come to a natural end, Mrs Crayon decided not to pursue it any further, firstly because the little learner had vanished from the toilets, and secondly, an idea for a daft doodle and a bonkers rhyme had already popped into her bewildered head.     

A special friend

There's a rare and special animal
Of which I'm very fond.
It is the Aquatic Elephant,
And I've got one in my pond.

I'm not sure when he came,
Or if he's leaving soon,
But the fish they are complaining,
That he takes up too much room!

I love my Aquatic Elephant though,
We have a special bond,
But I feel I must persuade him,
To find a bigger pond. 

So if you want an Aquatic Elephant,
He's yours to own today.
But you'll need some mighty muscles,
To carry him away!

"Sorry! We don't deliver."

Saturday, 7 September 2013

Fanfares and Squeaky feet

It wasn't a trumpeting fanfare that heralded the the arrival of Sunnyside School's first time little learners today, oh no! It was the squeaks and the creaks of their brand new (and unmarked) school shoes that alerted the team of their imminent entrance into the Reception classroom.

Welcome back everyone to new shoes, a new academic year and a new class of little Reception learners. Another busy and eventful year awaits each and every one of them. The six strong Reception team made up of Mrs Jolly, Mrs Very Jolly, Miss Kind, Mrs Caring, Mrs Crayon and Mrs Organised are as excited as ever to be once again supporting the learning in the Reception Year at Sunnyside School.

Just as it did on day one of the new academic year last year, the sun shone brightly on the little seaside town of Whippy Cove, and it shone particularly brightly on the little school called Sunnyside. And just as they did last year, little learners were able to enjoy a wonderful variety of activities outside in the warm sunshine. 

A consistently popular warm weather activity is the water tray, and it was at the water tray that Miss Kind found herself this morning happily engaged in conversation with a small group of brand new little Sunnyside learners. The importance of drinking plenty of fluids in the hot weather came up for discussion and the little learners agreed that water was by far the best option. "Nanny says Granddad drinks too much drinks!" Stated one little learner holding his teapot aloft his head and skillfully directing it's contents into small cup on the edge of the water tray. "Do you know, "I don't think it's possibly to drink too much water." Said Miss Kind trying to straighten her legs after spending a little too long in the crouched position. 
"Granddad doesn't drink water." Replied the little learner still concentrating on his pouring. "He drinks beer!" Miss Kind could instantly see where Nanny was coming from!   

And so it begins, was the thought that entered Miss Kind's head. Another year of totally original and thoroughly entertaining little learner gems to look forward to. 

In anticipation of a plentiful supply of little learner gems, Mrs Crayon has her paints and brushes at the ready in order to seal them with a fanciful doodle and a bonkers rhyme or two. 

So everyone, it's time to...