It's a Dog's Life!
This all began when one of the children brought a toy dog into nursery to show everybody at group time. During our discussions, we were talking about the real dogs that we have at home. We told each other our dogs' names, and talking about some of the things they do, like "eating dinner on the floor". After speaking to parents, we were able find out a little bit more about the children's dogs, including their breeds, the next day, we all looked at photographs of our dogs. Whilst talking, we described each dog's features, one of the children said "he got little ears and he got long ears", and another child said "that one all curly". We talked about the different breed types, Jo told us she has a Cocker Spaniel, Keely said she has a Poodle and Annie said she has a King Charles Spaniel. We talked about the Staffie and the Shih Tzu that some of the children had. Together, we practised saying their names.
We talked about how dogs move, communicate and eat, and together we all practised crawling like dogs and barking. One of the children said "gotta keep it on a lead on it's necklace, so it doesn't run away". Then we talked about how it is our jobs to look after our dogs, keeping them healthy and safe.
The next day, we looked at some real objects that we would need to look after a dog. We looked at the 'necklace', that was mentioned the previous day, and we all learned that it was actually called a 'collar'. We attached the lead to the collar, and all practised walking the toy dog. We looked at dog food, and poured it into a dog bowl, and discussed how dogs eat their food using their mouths. One of the children said it smelled "yukky", and we 'wondered' why dogs didn't use knives and forks to eat, like us. That's when one of the children reminded us, "they don't got hands, they got paws".
Wow, we really do have some dog experts in Sunshine Room!
We also looked at a dog's toothbrush, a dog's jumper, a poop bag, and lots of other things. Everybody was so chatty, talking about the different things they could see, and sharing their own experiences. We learned so many new words!
The next day, we had a suprise visitor! It was Ernie the King Charles Spaniel! He came to nursery on a lead and showed us his magic tricks, like 'sitting', and when he did a good job, we took turns to give him a treat! Then we went outside for a play, we held his lead carefully whilst walking him around the garden, some of the children even had a go at brushing his fur, whilst the other children threw a ball for Ernie to catch. We learned that we must be very gentle when stroking a dog, so that we don't hurt them.
Now in nursery, the children are using lots of different props when playing with the toy dogs, using the correct terminology and extending their role play further.
Soon, we are having a visit from a 'guide dog', they have a very important job! We are really excited to see what happens next!