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Tapestry

Being Economical Vs Letting Children Explore Resources


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something ive been thinking about wondered others views

 

at the moment my children love exploring selotape, just sticking strips on paper, sticking straws and other pieces of paper to card etc etc,

 

dont get me wrong i love to follow the childrens interests and the learning is great, but they go through so much and im getting slightly conscious of just how much they are using and whether i should allow them to explore how they wish or try to explain that we dont want to waste paper or resources and about being envrionmentally friendly. ???

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Haven't got an answer to this but I'm really interested to see what others say as I'm very much in the same position. In theory I think the children should go for it - we'd be perfectly happy for an artist to use rolls and rolls of sellotape making a beautiful sculpture, and this is children working at their level in the same way the artist is working at hers. Children learn such a lot this way, you can see how vauable this kind of play is etc etc. The process is the important thing, not the product. This is how I practise. On the other hand it does niggle at the back of my mind (and my TA frowns at me about it!) that they are using up lots of stuff! Also, how could you sensibly work a middle ground? You couldn't say 'each child is only allowed 4 strips of tape' for example, as this would constrict the learning as much as saying only use it with an adult monitoring. I say go for it, but I'd like to hear others' opinions!

 

Emma

 

ps sorry for basically repeating your post in different words!

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ps again!

I think the important cocept here is the idea of 'waste'. What is a waste of resources? There was also an interesting thread on here recently about using too much water for play in early years settings which raised similar issues.

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yeh i used the word waste as i couldnt think of another word to use, i know its not watse coz they are enjoying the process of what ever they doing and therefore cant be a waste of resource if they are getting something out of it.

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I use the cheapest tape/masking tape i can find (wilkinsons usually) and old boxes, such as cereal boxes, tubes etc, basic (junk)..........if they want to use 'flat paper'to practice putting strips of tape on, i simply tear the back/front off the cereal boxes.Newspaper works well too, and is all cheaper, and better than plain, new paper.

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also buy cheapest.. (poundland is good too 4 rolls of tape in a pack)

and boxes from parents

 

amouint balances out really some use lots and often others not much and seldom as it is free choice

 

Inge

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We go for the cheap option for tape too.

Seem to have an endless supply of paper as a parent owns a printing company and we get all the off-cuts. Good idea to use junk boxes and newspaper to experiment with.

We work on the theory that children's creativity could be stunted if we held them back from using resources such as tape and even paint. Like I said, we source the cheap versions which can work just as well and try to see the enjoyment and learning children can get out of a simple roll of tape and paper.

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It's so difficult though isn't it when others don't understand the educational reasons behind what they see as a waste, or us not teaching our children to be careful about resources.

I used to have huge battles with the keeper of the stock cupboard key over how much we used in Foundation... I can't moan now as our caretaker is now in charge and he's fab and gives us everything we ask for! I mentioned more guttering on the fence this morning and I know some will magically appear there within a coupe of days!

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From experience I have found that developing a recycling/environmental protection policy; that the children are activity involved in can counter a 'waste/replace culture'. I think that when using any energy source or resource it is important to remind children about whrer it come from, how we can save water/paper/trees/plastic etc Children are facinated to learn that their fleecy jumper may have been made from recycled bottles! I encourage children to re-use construction materials in as many ways as possible and for many different models/designs. Children like the challenge of "how could I do this differently?". it is important for children to value te resources of the world.

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We use all sorts for cutting out too Book Club magazines and the hundreds of catalogues we are inundated with. I also get loads of fabric from freecycle and lots of visits to the Junk Store. Of course we ask parents for donations too of junk for modelling. Bottle tops are very popular.

 

Cheap tape too, how would we survive without it.

 

My son went through a phase of sticking and cutting and folding and painting till he managed to create this tiny square and it was a very therapeutic activity for him, he is a very full on little boy and I think we would have experienced more behavioural issues if we had stopped him using it.

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I agree that resources should be freely available for reasons stated but don't see why it can't be presented in the way jenyyjenkinz describes. As a child is pulling reams and reams of tape I would ask, what happens when that runs out, is there enough for everyone to have some tomorrow, what could we use instead? etc.

 

Must admit though, I once had some children decide to take the coloured cellotape ( parcel tape) from the creative area to the climbing frame, they wrapped it round and round the wooden strutts, when asked about it they said they were decorating the climbing frame for christmas :( . Must admit it did look good and also served as an additional good grip for climbing feet, mind you about 6 mths later a visiting new parent asked me if the climbing frame was safe, looking puzzled at her question (well it did have safety mats etc) she pointed and said, "it's taped up". She only thought it had been broken and had a dodgy repair job done on it. :o:( ( I know they say the tape is strong, but not that much). Had to laugh, and I still have the C. frame in my back garden since I closed the group, tape and all. xD

 

 

Peggy

 

p.s. Got the tape from staple, 6 rolls for £7.99, colours - red, green, blue, orange and white, they lasted ages and ages, stick well but tear easy so don't always need scissors.

 

pps The children love using elastic bands for constructions and they are easily re-usable.

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Hi Northernbird

 

Again same as others,cheap tape - parcel, coloured electrical tape (6 different colours for £1 - poundland)

Lots of 'junk' for modeling

scrap paper from around the nursery

Xmas cards, envelopes - the kind that come through your door - stamped addressed ones!

post it notes - well cheap for a big pack from poundland or wilkos

Recycle any paintings or pictures that have been done but either no name or no-one owns up to them!

 

Kids just love the tape!!

 

But should be aloud to explore as they wish - we do discuss waste with the children and recycling but they go to be aloud to have fun

 

Claire

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I get a little frustrated when children "waste" the resources with no consideration for others but as said its not waste when the children are getting something from it so alternativly make it as cheap as possible I also avoid putting too much out at a time it seems it doesnt matter how much is put out the children have a mission to use every last bit

 

we try to remind the children "dont forget to leave some stuff for the other children to have a turn" its not just about waste its learning consideration for others

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