Nature Play

It was my birthday a couple of weeks ago and I was lucky enough to be bought several bunches of flowers. Flowers are one of my favourite things to be given – having fresh flowers in the house brings me so much joy! If I had lots of money to spend I have seen some fresh cut flower subscription boxes….you know like the veg box schemes…what a luxury! Anyway, as the days have gone on the flowers have begun to wilt, and I came home recently to find some of my lovely peonies had shed their petals over the floor. However rather than wasting them I thought this was a great opportunity for some sensory play…it’s like two pressies in one!

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Firstly we put some of the petals in T’s tray. She enjoyed feeling them and describing how they felt. We got out the hose and she sprayed in some water, and then used the hose to fill her watering can with which she continued to fill the tray.

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She enjoyed splashing and stirring and requested that I get some glitter to add to her mixture. She told me it was porridge! It looked somewhat more decorative than porridge, I have to say, but whatever, we’ll go with it.

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She enjoyed paddling in the 'porridge' the next day.
She enjoyed paddling in the ‘porridge’ the next day.

The following day I put out some more petals on a tray, and added some mint, lavender and oregano from the garden. I put these out with her scissors and a cupcake case.

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She enjoyed snipping them into small pieces, smelling their scents and asking me to tell her the names of the different plants. She also continued playing with her porridge, and splashing it all over me! Good thing the weather has cheered up!

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In April T and I planted some seeds, and this week we were able to harvest our first courgette! I’m glad to have one that the slugs haven’t got to. It looks like we have a few more on the way too!

This courgette is around 11cm long, perfect harvesting length according to the RHS!
This courgette is around 11cm long, perfect harvesting length according to the RHS!
We ate them sliced and lightly fried in butter. Yum!
We ate them sliced and lightly fried in butter. Yum!

We also dug up some potatoes this week. Every time another one appeared, T jumped in the air and shouted “Tato! Yippeeee! Yay yay!!”

Image of child holding basket of potatoes

One of T’s favourite games recently is playing ‘ice creams’. We play it regularly but we always just imagine the ice creams and their various toppings. This week I decided to use some of the natural resources we had to provide opportunities for extending this play. We used some play dough as the ice cream and loo roll centres as the cones. T used various natural resources as the different toppings. She enjoyed looking at the imprints the different leaves and petals made in the dough.

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We also did some painting in the garden this week. We used different natural materials as our paintbrushes to make marks on a large sheet of paper.

Image of paint pots and natural materials including pine cone and leaves. An arm is reaching across and it bears the caption "I couldn't get her to leave them long enough to get a pic!"
I couldn’t get her to leave them long enough to get a pic!

 

Image of child's painting with natural materials strewn around.
I particularly like the marks made by the palm-type branch.

We’ve had such a fab week with all this nature play! I meant to get involved with 30 Days Wild (which I think was in June) but I didn’t get around to it. No reason why we can’t do our own though eh?! It’s been great to be able to enjoy some more time outside now the summer seems to have arrived, albeit reluctantly! I will definitely be trying to incorporate some more outdoor play over the coming months.

The Pramshed
Petite Pudding

16 Comment

  1. I threw old flowers out last week and now reading this I’m literally gutted that I just put them in the bin; it didn’t even occur to me to do nature play with them; I wouldn’t mind but we’ve spent most of the last two weeks picking Daisy’s as lily loves it!! X

    1. beccatooth says: Reply

      Ah well, next time! It’s never occurred to me before but peonies have such lovely big petals, they’re practically begging to be played with! Thanks for reading!

  2. What a great way to use old flowers! It looks like a lot of fun and like something my kid would like to do. I love finding new fun things to do outside. And the zucchini look fabulous. I have not tried to make them this way before. We have a few growing in our garden as well. #TribalLove

    1. beccatooth says: Reply

      Thanks-we really enjoyed the week. I think it’s the first time I’ve grown anything from seed so it’s very gratifying seeing them grow well. If I can do it, anyone can!

  3. You are so creative. I love sensory play and thinks it’s a great way to learn. I particularly like the flowers and water ‘porridge’ and the ice cream toppings game. Your daughter is certainly very lucky to have such a creative mother to stimulate her learning and development. #triballove

    1. beccatooth says: Reply

      Thanks Pat! That is so kind of you. I’m the lucky one, I love doing this kind of stuff with her.

  4. Very creative! No one buys me flowers but if they did I’d have a go although she’d probably eat them!

    1. beccatooth says: Reply

      Lol! What I forgot to put in the post was that I accidentally left her scissors out and as I re-entered the living room, T proudly announced that he had chopped off several tassels from my lovely wool blanket!

  5. Fab! What a great way to use old flowers.
    #triballove xx

    1. beccatooth says: Reply

      Thanks for reading!

  6. Some brilliant ideas there, will have to remember to do that with my flowers next time rather than just putting them straight in the bin! #fortheloveofBLOG

    1. beccatooth says: Reply

      Thanks Sarah! I was surprised how many things we came up with once we started playing with them!

  7. karen says: Reply

    All of these are fab ideas I saw a lot of them while I was taking part in the 30 days wild challenge, it was indeed in June. There are a few hardcore challengers adapting to the #365DaysWild challenge so I’ll tweet this out with the hashtag for you! Love the Peonies. #PuddingLove

  8. ohlucy says: Reply

    How inventive! I used to love collecting leaves when I was little and attempting to make pictures with them and different bits of art! I could never use flower petals though because of the residue pollen making everyone sneeze! Haha! Lucy xx #triballove

  9. A flower subscription box would be lush wouldn’t it?! We can dream. Thanks for sharing on #fortheloveofBLOG x

  10. wow some great ideas here for getting kids into nature – I always want to do more stuff like this but I have little imagination! Thanks for sharing with #PuddingLove

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