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The Farm


This is a topic with rich resources for talking about caring for the environment, animals, and for ourselves. It provides plenty of opportunities for outdoor learning, as well as lots of story books to link to different themes. Looking at farms that grow crops and vegetables extends the scope of this topic and allows for lots of fun with planting, growing and cooking!

Overview
This topic support article includes a book list, mind map and suggested activities to cover the seven areas of learning. The mindmap bullet points are included as a separate document for ease of reference, but also listed in the 'Ideas and Suggestions' sections below. Each topic focus provides a book list and a brainstorm of ideas for activities linked to the Areas of Learning and Development, as well as some activity plans. There are usually book recommendations and other resource suggestions in the topic forum as well, so make sure you have a browse through the discussions to see if there is anything else of interest.

Personal Social and Emotional Development (PSED)
Communication & Language and Literacy (CL and L)
Understanding the world (UW)
Mathematics (M)
Physical Development (PD)
Expressive Arts & Design (EAD)


Personal, Social and Emotional Development (PSED)

Ideas and Suggestions

  • What do animals eat?
  • Have a mini harvest celebration
  • Grow some vegetables or herbs
  • Collect seeds on a walk
  • Take care of the environment – when you go on a country walk shut gates, don’t drop litter etc.
  • Make porridge
  • Small World Farm
  • Difference between town and countryside
  • Changing seasons – what happens on a farm at different times of the year?
  • Sharing – The Little Red Hen
  • Safety on the farm – machinery, washing hands etc.

Activities
Keeping Safe/forums/uploads/word.gif/forums/uploads/pdficon.gif
Caring For Animals/forums/uploads/word.gif /forums/uploads/pdficon.gif
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Communication& Language and Literacy (CL and L)

Ideas and Suggestions:

  • Farm animal puppets
  • Stories with props
    Songs and Rhymes
  • Alliteration with initial sound e.g. clumsy cow, happy horse
  • Act out stories (e.g. The Enormous Turnip/ The Three Little Pigs)
  • Animal sounds listening games
  • Role play area – Farm shop/ Animal Barn
  • Farm story bag/feely bag
  • Matching cards – adult and baby animals
  • Names for adult and baby animals
  • Talk about different jobs around the farm – mucking out/shearing sheep/milking time etc.
  • Make an interactive display about a particular farm animal – include facts, books, small world animals, puppets etc.

Activities
Farm Story Bag /forums/uploads/word.gif /forums/uploads/pdficon.gif
Animal Alliteration /forums/uploads/word.gif /forums/uploads/pdficon.gif
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Understanding the world (UW)

Ideas and Suggestions:

  • Visit a Farm
  • Role play area – Farm Shop/Animal Barn
  • Grow your own wheat
  • Duck pond in the water tray
  • Small world farm – on play mat/in tray with sand, earth or straw
  • Make porridge
  • Make bread
  • Make animal biscuits
    Make boiled eggs/egg sandwiches/pancakes
  • Look at sheep’s wool and compare with balls of wool for knitting
  • Spin some wool
  • Look for things that are made of wool
  • Sort different seeds
  • Investigate ears of corn
  • Look at similarities and differences between crop farms and animal farms
  • Farming around the world
  • Investigate animal coverings – fur/feathers/skin/wool

Activities
The Journey of a Jumper /forums/uploads/word.gif /forums/uploads/pdficon.gif
Take Rosie for a Walk /forums/uploads/word.gif /forums/uploads/pdficon.gif

Display example
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Mathematics (M)

Ideas and Suggestions:

  • Use egg boxes and make and count play dough eggs
  • Count sets of animals
  • Sort animals – either different types of animal, or adult and baby animals, or farm animals from zoo animals
  • Sort by features, such as number of legs
  • Sort harvest produce into fruit and vegetables
  • Role play area – money and counting in the Farm Shop
  • Make squares of coloured paper to represent fields (brown, yellow, green) and make repeating patterns
  • Sequence animals e.g. 1 pig, 2 sheep, 1 pig, 2 sheep.
  • Five little ducks in the water tray
  • Survey of the children’s favourite animals
  • Count money in and out of piggy banks
  • Small world farm – counting animals

Activities
Farmyard Homes /forums/uploads/word.gif /forums/uploads/pdficon.gif
Vegetable Box Delivery /forums/uploads/word.gif /forums/uploads/pdficon.gif
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Physical Development (PD)

Ideas and Suggestions:

  • Pretend to be different types of farm machinery
  • Ride on tractors and trucks
  • Action rhymes
  • Make plasticine animals
  • Make animal homes out of construction toys
  • Move like animals – skip like lambs, paddle like ducks, gallop like horses etc.
  • Act out the Enormous Turnip Story – pretend to really pull the turnip, or have a mini ‘tug of war’ outside
  • Hide root vegetables in a tray filled with earth/in sand pit outside – provide spades and buckets for digging them out
  • Look at pictures of hen houses that have ramps – make ramps outside and go up and down them
  • Animal parachute games

Activities
Ploughing the Fields /forums/uploads/word.gif /forums/uploads/pdficon.gif
Farmyard Obstacles /forums/uploads/word.gif /forums/uploads/pdficon.gif
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Expressive Arts & Design (EAD)

Ideas and Suggestions:

  • Role play areas
  • Songs and Rhymes
  • Weaving with wool
  • Making a farm collage
  • Farm animal masks
  • Make a scarecrow
  • Decorate old CDs and hang outside over your seeds to keep the birds off
  • Make homes for small world farm animals – hen house/pig sty/barn
  • Patchwork patterns – like the fields
  • Papier mache piggy banks
  • Mixing colours – pink for pigs/brown for horses

Activities
Make a Scarecrow /forums/uploads/word.gif /forums/uploads/pdficon.gif
Noisy Animals /forums/uploads/word.gif /forums/uploads/pdficon.gif
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