As an Olympic Games fan I wanted to bring some of the excitement and interest surrounding the Games to my children. What better way than a mini Olympics in the garden? My children are three and one so there wasn’t much competitive element to the activities but lots and lots of fun.
We started with the javelin. The three year old didn’t have a clue what this was so we watched a clip a YouTube.
This was a good way to show how we can use technology for a purpose to find information. We then made large javelins with rolled up newspaper which we taped together. The garden was the perfect place to throw our new creations. This was great for physical skills as well as mathematical language related to distance.
Our javelins then became hurdles with the rolled newspaper draped between the rungs of two slides. My son loved this and wanted to do it again and again while the younger one continually knocked the post over – she just didn’t care she just loved joining in. Again, running and jumping improved their physical skills but helped to develop both their personal, social and emotional skills – turn taking, not always succeeding to name a few.
My son’s favourite activity was the shooting. We used numbered targets and water pistols. First we used chalk to write numbers on different targets. This was my daughter’s favourite bit and I have subsequently found her chalking on the back of the plastic chairs we had used! We then used the water from the pistols to try and wash away the numbers before redrawing them and starting again. The trigger action on the gun helps to improve fine motor skills while the numbered targets helps with number recognition and the chalking of numbers is good mark making practise.
To add a bit of art and craft to the occasion we made some medals. This helped with number recognition but the cutting and using a glue stick and sponges was good experience of using different tools and media.
After all the fun in the garden we decided to have a themed dinner with food coming from different countries: Lasagne from Italy, a Greek salad, French Brie and Mexican nachos along with a well deserved Spanish Sangria for mum!