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List of Activity Support Articles

EYFS Activity Support articles

Festivals: Diwali

by Juliet Mickelburgh in Activity Support

A helpful article outlining the festival of Diwali.The timing of the festival follows the Hindu lunar calendar and this year it runs from 13th to 17th November. Diwali is full of bright colours, exciting stories and joyous customs, making it very accessible to young children.

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Festivals: Ramadan and Eid-ul-fitr

by Juliet Mickelburgh in Activity Support

This is another in the series of articles on festivals and how to celebrate them with young children. Here we look at Ramadan, the Islamic month of fasting, and the Eid-ul-fitr festival that marks the end of Ramadan. This year Ramadan begins on 20th July and Eid-ul-fitr runs from 19th to 21st August.

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Festivals: Buddhist Festival of Wesak

by Juliet Mickelburgh in Activity Support

The festival of Wesak, or Buddha Day, takes place near the full moon in May, and this year it falls on 5th May. For Mahayana Buddhists it is a celebration of the birth of Buddha and for Theravada Buddhists this day marks the birth, enlightenment and death of Buddha. It is the most important festival in the Buddhist calendar. Here, Juliet Mickelburgh outlines the main stories associated with Wesak and suggests lots of wonderful activities you can offer your children.

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Festivals: Easter

by Juliet Mickelburgh in Activity Support

Easter is central to the Christian year. Leading up to it are the forty days and forty nights of Lent, the last week of which is Holy Week. Good Friday is at the end of Holy Week and is the day that Christians commemorate the crucifixion and death of Jesus. Easter Sunday celebrates his resurrection. The festival does not have a fixed date, but takes place in March or April each year, and in 2012, Easter Sunday is April 8th. There are many traditions associated with Easter that celebrate new life and rebirth and Juliet Mickelburgh talks us through the most popular.

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Festivals: Passover

by Juliet Mickelburgh in Activity Support

Passover, or Pesach in Hebrew, is one of the most important festivals in the Jewish year. It remembers the flight from Egypt of the Jewish people led by Moses. Passover is a family festival lasting seven or eight days. This year it begins at sundown on 6th April and ends on 14th April. Juliet Mickelburgh summarises the key themes and messages of Passover and suggests some suitable activities for you to offer your children.

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Festivals: Holi

by Juliet Mickelburgh in Activity Support

Holi is a Hindu festival. It celebrates the coming of Spring and is known for its fun and colour. Holi is a time of social unity, excitement and a bit of mischief. It falls in February or March each year and this year Holi is on 8th March. It is a wonderful and accessible festival to celebrate with young children. Here, Juliet Mickelburgh outlines the main stories and traditions, and offers some suggestions on how to celebrate Holi in your setting.

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Festivals: Chinese New Year

by Juliet Mickelburgh in Activity Support

Chinese New Year is also known as the Spring Festival. It is a fifteen day celebration of good fortune, family and prosperity. The Chinese calendar follows a twelve year cycle and each year is named after an animal. This year, Chinese New Year begins on 23rd January and is the Year of the Dragon. Celebrating Chinese New Year is a wonderful way of introducing another country and another culture to young children.

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Festivals series: Christmas

by Juliet Mickelburgh in Activity Support

Beginning a new series on festivals, Juliet Mickelburgh kicks us off with Christmas!

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The Santa Drama!

by Jacquie Long in Activity Support

Using drama to provide a context for learning - and have some fun at the same time.

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The Snowman Drama

by Jacquie Long in Activity Support

Another in our growing series of drama activities - the snowman drama. Especially for January and February!

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Interactive Story Making

by Lesley Hendy in Activity Support

Continuing on from her article on imaginative roleplay, Lesley Hendy makes stories with her children!

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Using Drama in Reception - Bonfire!

by Jacquie Long in Activity Support

Jacquie describes a whole group drama approach applied to bonfire night. "Learning through Imagined Experience" from an enthusiastic and experienced reception teacher.

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The Farmer Drama

by Jacqeline Long in Activity Support

Farmer MacDonald is getting older and his farm isn't what it used to be. Can he avoid closure after a stern letter from the ministry? Accompanied by a drama plan and tips for a role play area.

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Revisiting Imaginative Play

by Lesley Hendy in Activity Support

Imaginative or role play is in danger of being eclipsed by the demands of the EYFS Curriculum. Lesley Hendy invites us to take a fresh look at this important tool in a young child's learning about the world around them.

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The Fish Who Could Wish: using a storybook for activities

by Martine Horvath in Activity Support

Martine Horvath suggests some lively activities based around the very popular storybook.

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Using "The Gruffalo" as a Focus for Activities

by Juliet Mickelburgh in Activity Support

This is the first in a series of planning ideas using a big book as the starting point.

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Using "Harry and the Bucketful of Dinosaurs" as a Focus for Activities

by Juliet Mickelburgh in Activity Support

Another collection of planning ideas using a big book as the starting point. Activities are linked to the EYFS Areas of Learning and Development, including suggestions for displays and role play areas.

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Using "Dear Zoo" as a Focus for Activities

by Juliet Mickelburgh in Activity Support

Here is another collection of planning ideas using a big book as the inspiration for learning. There are suggested activity starting points related to the Areas of Learning and Development, as well as ideas for displays and role play areas. A book list related to the focus book by author or theme is also included.

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Using "You Choose" by Pippa Goodhart and Nick Sharratt, as a Focus for Activities (available to visitors)

by Juliet Mickelburgh in Activity Support

A new collection of ideas for activities inspired by a children's book. Suggested activities are linked to the Areas of Learning and Development, followed by possible role play areas and displays. There is also a book list with links to other books by the same author and illustrator, and with links to the same themes."You Choose" isn't a story book, but it's not a conventional non-fiction book either. It opens up the world, both near and far, to the children and asks them to think about the everyday and the unusual.

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Using 'Owl Babies' by Martin Waddell & Patrick Benson as a focus for activities

by Juliet Mickelburgh in Activity Support

This is a lovely book to focus on when children are starting school or nursery or with a new childminder. There are lots of opportunities to talk about how we feel when the people we love leave, and how we feel when they come back again. Children can also explore night and day and nocturnal animals. Others may be interested in woods and trees and birds. Whatever direction the children want to take their learning, this story provides plenty of interesting starting points.

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Using "The Dog Who Could Dig", by Jonathan Long and Korky Paul, as a focus for activities

by Juliet Mickelburgh in Activity Support

This is a great book for looking at things under the ground. The children's interests might take you down a number of different avenues - buried treasure, tunnels, animals that burrow or people who work underground. The story lends itself to lots of outdoor activities and lots of digging!

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