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Discovery Table Ideas


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Hi all

 

For September I would like to set up a specific discovery table area and would like some ideas.

Do you do this already if so, what works and what sort of things do you put on the table?

all help would be really appreciated.

thanks

BB

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This is an area we have developed recently as Science had a lowish score in our ECERS-R and ECERS-E audits. It was well worth doing though as the children are really spending time in a state of "awe and wonder", well and truly involved with the resources.

 

We have a wormery, ant farm, bug obervatory, fruit and veg in various stages fresh and decaying, onions on top of glass jar showing root growth, lots of plants - grasses, corn and rape showing how they have ripened. Magnets and a collection of items both magnetic and non magnetic. Lots of text books on insects, plants and growing.

 

I can't remember any more, if I go into work tomorrow and spot something else I will let you know. Oh yes we have had a fish to disect, but we don't let that decay!? :o

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We have a wormery, ant farm, bug obervatory, fruit and veg in various stages fresh and decaying, onions on top of glass jar showing root growth, lots of plants - grasses, corn and rape showing how they have ripened. Magnets and a collection of items both magnetic and non magnetic. Lots of text books on insects, plants and growing.

 

This sounds great! Do you have all these things out for children to access all the time or do you put them out one at a time? When you replay to this, I'll have some more questions, as I feel my discovery area has been a bit lacking this year - sometimes great but other times, really not, and also in a slightly undervalued area of the classroom - would like to move it to up its status, but what to move to make room for it?!

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We try to have most of it out all of the time and have to keep replenishing the fruit, veg and plants or changing them for different ones. We keep a set of plastic see through drawers beside the tables so the magnets and books are easy to access and to chop and change.

 

Its the same with ants, worms and other creepy crawlies the children let them go free then quickly find some new residents.

Another one I have thought of is a caterpillars changing into butterflies and releasing them.

 

When we originally reviewed this area and had so many ideas we thought that we would have to "ration" what was out but the children just push back what they don't want and bring what they do to the front.

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Discovery bottles - large clear empty water bottles with different things in, eg.paper clips/filings and a magnet; oil and paint/colouring; glitter -got one that's like a snow globe, I think there's something somewhere on here about them or you could google discovery bottles.

Posy

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Great ideas thank you everyone. :o

 

Another question how do you go about setting up the area?

I was thinking of putting out an activity and then adding - books, posters etc and letting the children explore independently, maybe adding some cards with prompts on. Do you do this or do you make it an adult focus activity?

 

sorry for so many questions but if anyone has any advice I would be gratful

thank you

BB

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We have a discovery area as basic provision so children access freely. Sometimes if the area has bee changed it will be after an adult input session on the activity table to model.

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