Last Friday after a ‘happy accident’ of some sand finding its way to our light box table (with some amazing effects), we decided to explore this idea a little further.
Using a container to stop the sand from falling all over the floor, the children spent the day using their creativity to manipulate the sand as they wished.
There were lots of patterns created, swirls, loops, dots, pictures drawn and even some writing. Children went from using just one finger to work the sand; to having both their hands moved by the momentum of their body, controlling the direction and results of the sand.
Today wishing to extend the children’s thinking further, I showed them some video clips I came across – (check out the one below), I’m sure you’ll agree it's amazing stuff.
This clip further provoked the children’s thinking and consequently the use of the sand. I was able to see them experimenting with their creations whilst also hearing some imaginative stories being incorporated into their work.
Ryan, “I’m going swirl, swirl. I’m making a roller coaster”
Jaxon, “It’s so big, look at this, it’s a tail and a head, it’s a gruffosauraus, that’s a dinosaur”
Adding jewels and tiny crochet flowers creates more possibilities for design
Whilst the transformation of the sand into letters and pictures enables the children to extend themselves creatively, this experience is also a great way into which to support motor skill development, in particular fine motor skills.
Enabling children to use their meta-cognitive skills, as they create what they know, not what they see.
Creating, imagining, innovating
Fine motor skills, or small motor movements, are most commonly thought of as the skills we do with our hands. Fine motor skills affect children in many ways. Children require fine motor skills for many aspects of life, from picking up food in order to feed themselves; to manipulating zips and buttons, to holding paint brushes, pencils and scissors. It is not surprising to know then, that fine motor skills are directly related to handwriting ability – without strong developed muscles in our fingers and hands, we are not able to hold pens and pencils correctly in order to learn to write or draw.
Because this is such an important aspect of a child’s development and education, we create many opportunities at Mairtown through a range of resources for children to use and strengthen their fine motor skills.