Jump to content
Home
Forum
Join Us
Articles
About Us
Tapestry

Conkers


Recommended Posts

We were thinking of capitalising on the abundance of conkers to use them for some activities in pre-school, but my boss thinks she read somewhere that they can be poisonous.

 

She can't remember where, when or what part is supposed to be poisonous, but I thought you clever people would certainly know the answer!

 

I did a quick search on 'conkers' on the forum and it appears that several of you use them in lots of fantastic activities, and I can't imagine that you would be doing this if they were poisonous!

 

But if anyone has any accurate information about the safety (or otherwise) of conkers, I'd be grateful to hear it!

 

Many thanks

Maz

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Daffodils are reportedly poisonous too, but have you ever heard of a child being poisoned by one? Surely with sensible supervision the danger is not great. And as for conkers - one child did more harm to themselves by putting one up their nose, at home, than they were likely to do by touching them in preschool!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

one child did more harm to themselves by putting one up their nose

38554[/snapback]

My mind is boggling, Weightman. Was this a very small conker, or a very large nose?

 

Maz

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Um - I didn't see, as it happened at home, but it took over 2 hours to extract apparently!!!

38584[/snapback]

I can see the headlines in the Daily Mail now "Conkers banned to prevent nasal blockage epidemic"...

 

Maz

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Absolutely!

 

I visited a garden centre with a relative who teaches. This person was looking at a glass hyacinth-growing jar, thought it would be a good idea to use with their KS1 class so they could see the roots developing,then remembered of course glass wasn't allowed in class. So there was a discussion about how to improvise something similar - Blue Peter style - when the sales person said "You do know they're poisonous, hyacinth bulbs, don't you?" Teacher replied that it would be out of reach, & trusted the 5/6/7 year olds not to eat it anyway. I'm sad that kids today are so detached from the natural world.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Absolutely!

 

I visited a garden centre with a relative who teaches. This person was looking at a glass hyacinth-growing jar, thought it would be a good idea to use with their KS1 class so they could see the roots developing,then remembered of course glass wasn't allowed in class. So there was a discussion about how to improvise something similar - Blue Peter style - when the sales person said "You do know they're poisonous, hyacinth bulbs, don't you?" Teacher replied that it would be out of reach, & trusted the 5/6/7 year olds not to eat it anyway. I'm sad that kids today are so detached from the natural world.

38626[/snapback]

I quite agree: I think if we give children responsibility and show them how to treat these materials with respect (and carefully supervise them!), there's no reason why we shouldn't offer these experiences to our children.

 

And surely no-one can fit a hyacinth bulb up their nose??

 

Maz

Link to comment
Share on other sites

There was a lot of 'hoo-ha' (my word for mindless scaremongering!) last year in the papers over schools banning conkers as they were seen as 'nuts' and the school policy was that of no nuts... hmm - horsechestnut sandwiches anyone?

 

If I remember rightly, there are cases where children with severe nut alllergies have reacted to contact with conkers, but not to the extent of having an anaphylactic reaction... you should just bear in mind any children that have a known allergy when playing with them.

 

I think that if you were really concerned about using them or if parents challenged you due to media hype, you should carry out the dreaded risk assessment to ascertain if the risk outweighed the learning opportunities.

 

I have always used conkers in heuristic play (with older children) and on nature tables, in creative play (rolling in paint) and in maths actiivities and I'm sure that the children will be collecting them when they go out for walks with their parents.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have never had any problems with conkers....however am a tad worried by comments.......

 

On another note, was very saddened to read about the 12 year-old who had such a tragic accident collecting conkers - not a good idea to climb trees over railings, it appears!

 

Sue :o

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have never had any problems with conkers....however am a tad worried by comments.......

 

On another note, was very saddened to read about the 12 year-old who had such a tragic accident collecting conkers - not a good idea to climb trees over railings, it appears!

 

Sue  :o

38684[/snapback]

What comments are you worried about Sue?

 

And when I saw that photograph of the railing by the tree in the paper last week, I (and I'm sure every other mother in the land) could see it was an accident waiting to happen.

 

What a tragedy.

 

Maz

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Going off at a slight tangent here but a while ago a child who suffered from severe nut allergies touched some spring bulbs as part of a class activity planting them in the grounds. He suffered a very severe reaction and was hospitalised. The parent was irate and said school should have known that bulbs are coated in something (can't remember what.... sorry). Still it helps to share these things, sad as they are. It might help us avoid a similar horrid incident.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue. (Privacy Policy)