Our favourite place to learn with the children is outdoors, but sometimes we just can’t venture out. I don’t like cold or wet weather very much. The boys tend to play inside on days like that because I’m a bit soft! That doesn’t mean we can’t incorporate the outdoors into our play and learning though, and some of my favourite toys are our Schleich animals. We did a dinosaur dig a little while back and the figures were wonderfully resilient, so I have total faith in the quality of them.
We also have some larger figures – a cow, a horse and a zebra. The boys are perhaps getting a little bit big for setting out a farm yard or a jungle, but the realistic Schleich models are brilliant for use as part of a bigger project. I chose the Schleich cow as a subject and put together a mini-project for the boys.
Cow storytelling game – this is where we imagine that we are a cow and talk about our life. Where are the best patches of grass? Which of the other cows do we like best and why? Do we like being milked? Within our activities there are a variety of approaches to educational play.
The balanced play diet
I read an online brochure sent to me by Schleich about different ways to play. I have included a link to the brochure – just click on the picture at the end of the post. Covering topics such as a balanced play diet, encouraging imagination and early language skills, the guide also comes with helpful tips on how to get the best from your child’s playtime. If you are stuck for inspiration, games ideas are included in the brochure too which are great.
Despite thinking I always offered the boys a good range of play options, the brochure made me rethink some of the activities we do and made me incorporate more free play into our day. I prefer to have structure to our learning activities so this was something a bit new to me, but the boys enjoyed their ‘free play’, which incidentally resulted in them plodding around on all fours and acting the goat. Well, the cow!
*we received 3 Schleich figures to help up to write a post around them.