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Sensory Play


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Hi

 

What's your thoughts.

 

We have some strong difference of opinions in our setting about the use of food for sensory play. Some teachers are strongly apposed to using things such as pasta or rice. They feel that its wrong to play with food that could be used for people to eat.

 

What do you think?

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That's a tricky one isn't it - I can understand their point of view.

 

But that said, we do use pasta, jelly, instant mash, pulses, beans, peas, rice - I think that the way that I justify that is ......... we can't give the food to anyone who needs it and the money spent on these items would be spent other on items for sensory play anyway.

 

Sunnyday

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Given a choice, I wouldnt use food. There are loads of other things we can use for texture but I know loads of places who do use it. Why not ask your parents what they think and ask staff to come up with ideas for alternatives?

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I agree that food does pose a bit of a dilema of conscience but sometimes it can be used as a tool to learn about food as well as textures.

over the years we have had 4 children who have had eating problems be it diet or phobia there are several reasons but playing with food has helped them to be less anxious about it.

sue

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I consider the food as a 'learning' resource raher than a waste. Fish being one of my favourite sources of investigative learning for children to explore. xD

There are lots of ecological and humanitarian dilemma's that could be considered about many resources used in the education in the 'western' world, power consumption of all the 'new' interactive whiteboards, paper versus tree's, the demise of school playing fields etc etc. Yes every little bit of restraint and sensible use of resources can make a difference but I think should be measured against what 'value' they give to our childrens opportunities for a range of experiences.

 

Maybe a compromise, consider using food that is past its sell by date, resource these foods from local shops / supermarkets or parents kitchen cupboards (often donated for the Xmas bazaar :o:( -well in my experience anyway :( )

 

Peggy

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I too have been having the same thoughts about the use of food bearing in mind the shortages reported of rice and rising prices of wheat etc for pasta. However, like others have said, it is a valuable resource for learning not only about textures, but about food itself. I like the use of spaghetti placed in tepid water and observing it change from its solid state to soft, seeing jelly change from being in lumps, to liquid, to being set and then once played with back to a watery state again. I once saw pasta mixed with breadcrumbs, flour, lentils and cocopops and some water - it was very inviting and popular - and not just with the children! :o

 

I guess if you use the products from the 'value' ranges which mean that they are from the lowest grade of product then that cuts down on the cost, but although part of me still is saying "Yes but that is taking food away from people", I am justifying the benefits of learning from those activities that children will have compared to if they didn't have those experiences.

 

My other conundrum is what about Jelly as a resource - if you have vegetarian children, do you make sure it is vegetarian jelly?

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