Tuesday, 27 September 2011

A follow up to it’s a kind of magic: Hands on teaching and learning

 As Sarah mentioned in her blog of yesterday, sometimes you need to be able to touch and physically see things in the flesh to be able to know how things feel, how they work and how special they are.

Through Baby Led Weaning Ida, I have taught myself that the best way of getting Ida to understand and communicate is through play and repetition. She leant to squash, smudge, squelch and drop a piece of sweet potato long before she leant to eat it.
We sit for what feels like hours after meal times with Ida pointing at her plate at the animations of the “sunshine”, “cow”, “sheep”, “flower”, “cloud” as I repeat the words over and over again for her. Then I break the repetition and I say, “where is the sunshine?” to which I am awarded with a smile and point at the correct yellow circle. Hurray! Progress.
The naughty is also very good at asking for the dingle dangle scarecrow song by signing, “cow”… “when all the cows are sleeping”… I wont’ sing it all! So when a daytrip with all the other antenatal Mummies to a farm was mentioned I thought yay!!

We all went to the marvelous Bocketts farm at the weekend. A lovely farm that has been opened to the public for Children and Adults to learn about farming and animals all through play. With the last of the summer sun shining brightly, the bags of animal feed ready to be used, wellies and waterproofs at the ready (just in case) and a packed lunch ready for all the babies to share amongst them (our BLW friends understand that babies who are weaned this way are very good at sharing thier lunch, as long as you share yours!)
We fed the Sheepies, we watched the Piggy’s race, we laughed at the chickens and I was an ever so happy and proud Mummy as we strolled up to the Big Cow and her calf with feed at the ready and Ida chuckled to herself and them signed, “cow”. She knew that this BIG animal was the same thing as the black and white Fresia on her plate at home.

Children learn through play. Your can sit and sit for hours with the TV and Books and teach them but sometimes you just need to get outside and feel, see, smell and touch the real thing.

Our next sign to learn is “elephant”. In honor of the Fluffy Companion Ida has decided is her favourite. Then when her bespoke handmade Breakfast set by Helen Beard is completed we’ll be able to play spot the Elephant with her. Her forever reminder of her Special Elephant friend through her early years, reminding her how very special he was. We may even nip to the Zoo to she how BIG Elephants really are!

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