So as is the normal at Penny’s Place four mindees attending this morning – Alex, Shona, Archie and Erin – all 2 years old
My ‘in my head’ planning said we would be going out to Witley Court which is an English Heritage property about 25 mins away and a lovely place for a walk, a picnic and to watch the fantastic fountains. Bonus being that as I am English Heritage member, the mindees and I can go as often as we like without any entrance fees.
As it happens my ‘in my head’ planning went out of the window as Archie was not feeling quite himself – not ill – no need for calpol or to send home – just in need of extra cuddles – and extra understanding when disagreements about toys occurred.
So instead we stayed at Penny’s Place and got on with the serious but fun task of PLAYING. Today play centered around the wooden heuristic items with a lot of moving between containers, stacking and sorting going on. Of course being children they ‘added’ extra things to their play from the continuous provision – magnetic cars, the teddy bears (from our topic – so Daddy Bear, Mummy Bear and Baby Bear.
So as I say an ordinary day – but wait – thinking about it – my ‘in my head observations’ say otherwise!
Alex is extending his play – last week he was lining his cars by colour – today he has very carefully selected cars that are the same – so fire engines, trucks etc placed together. To do this he went from storage basket in the one room, selected a vehicle, carried it to the other room and added it to his line – he repeated this for each vehicle – and he most definitely did not want any help from the other children – nor did he think my suggestion to move the basket of vehicles into the room with his line of vehicles a very good idea either! He had his plan, he knew what he wanted to do.
When another child did try to use one of the cars – Alex demonstrated his increased understanding of turn taking – because instead of just snatching it back or throwing himself on the floor in protest about the ‘loss’ of the car – he said to the other child ‘1, 2, 3 – give it to me’ OK, still not fully there with his understanding but a huge step forward.
Meanwhile Shona was talking to the big Daddy’ bear – showing the bear the books and helping him select a book and then sitting down together to read it (Shona is able to help the bear because she knows which way up books go – how to turn the pages and can either draw on her previous experience of the story – or tell a story from the pictures. I noted that Daddy bear still has to develop these skills!)
Then Shona and teddy went to sit on the sofa – Shona said to Teddy (note the gender change) ‘Do you need a wee wee teddy? Don’t wet your trousers. Good girl teddy you did wee wee’
And for the first time since starting potty training Shona did not have any washing to take home – so maybe (only guessing) the talk with teddy was more to herself and reinforcing messages from parents and Penny?
And then later on in this ‘ordinary day’ – when Erin had gone home and Scarlett and Dominic had arrived (2 of my grandchildren – Scarlett 7m and Dominic 8) Shona observed that Scarlett had a new cup and it was like hers but ‘different pink’ (shona’s being a dark pink and Scarlett’s a light pink) and to prove it to Scarlett – brought her own cup to show Scarlett how they were the same (two handles, lid that fits over spout, and of course pink)
Alex then said (on the return from work of my husband) Dominic’s granddad is here – instead of the usual ‘Garry is home’
So on reflection – maybe not just an ordinary day – in fact I have to ask – is any day when looking after children ‘an ordinary day’ in my experience there is always something that they say or do that is far from ordinary – and causes me to do a ‘in my head observation’ – which of course means I have noted their development.
Oh I hear some of you readers asking – ‘Did you do anything with those ‘in your head observations’ Penny?’
Of course – I have photo’s of some bits (as included here), I have made brief notes in the child’s diary (the one I keep here for my evidence) AND I have told the parents verbally / shown them the photo’s AND they have signed the child’s diary to confirm I have told them the things recorded on that day’s page.