We encourage #digifreeplay at our place because we know the negetive effects on child development when relied upon too much.
One of the best TV shows there is, is Play School produced by the ABC (probably why it has lasted 50+ years!). My kids always interact by jumping up dancing to the songs and guessing the window and then the inspiration continues long after the show is ended and ends up in our play.
I’ve documented some of the most recent ones to share with you and will do so from time to time (the best bit about this is that you can go find the same episodes yourself in the iView app or online!).
We watched an episode where the presenters used natural materials to recreate the life cycle of a caterpillar to a butterfly. We had some banksia pods already and as Miss 2 created, she was eager to head outside on her own to find some leaves to use as the wings of the butterfly.
The play then naturally progressed to other areas of play, like looking at the imprints of the things she’d collected.
This episode they made meringues. We carefully seperated the eggs and observed the changes as the whites were whipped. We then found some natural colour by smashing some blueberries with the mortar and prestal. We did this just before rest time so that the time waiting for them to cook (they take for AGES) went quickly.
They did some paint footprints and I know this is something Miss 2 is interested in as she comments when she sees them on the bath mat or on the concrete when her feet are wet. Unfortunately we were nearly out of butchers paper and paint but we made do and still were able to achieve the same goal of printing feet.
We loved this episode with crayon resist. It was a fun way to look at how different substances react with each other while making a fun picture. Miss 2 didn’t quite get to paint the whole paper but she got to see the effect all the same.
This episode was just yesterday. On the episode, they had Miss Polly getting all her animals treated by a vet. I was excited as Miss 2 had got doctor’s bag and equipment for Christmas and I thought this would be the way she’d take the play for sure! Towards the end of the episode, they used their play tray and a mixture of materials to make a fairy garden. THIS was what she decided to take from this episode.
Her big sister also loves fairies and there is a collection of fairy garden resources around our yard that has been building since she was little. The girls did this activity together. They made 2 seperate fairy gardens and also found a mermaid which they made a beach garden for.
I love that 20minutes of TV can lead to 1 hour + of unstructured play. The other show we love is Bluey, although it needs it’s own blog post about it’s strengths and inspiration for play.
If you have a little one that has shown comprehension of what they’ve watched and used it in their play to practise and learn more, I’d love to hear about it!
P.S. Disclaimer – Yes we promote #digifreeplay but yes, sometimes TV is on a little longer than we’d all like but it isn’t everyday or every week #keepingitreal.