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Discovery Table Week 10: Our City

We made it to week 10! At the time of writing this, still no baby but hopefully it wont be long now! This is the final post in the Discovery Table Series on the website, however if you follow us on Instagram and Facebook, we will still be changing the table each week.

This time around, we’ve chosen the city as our theme. Zoey has taken a real interest in both building and cars recently so we decided to combine the two! Continue reading Discovery Table Week 10: Our City

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Discovery Table Week 9: The Very Hungry Caterpillar

This is the penultimate week in our discovery table series and I couldn’t finish without featuring another of our favourite books: The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle! We have LOVED sharing the tables on the blog each week but with a new baby on the way, these posts will finish after 10 weeks. Not to worry though, as we will be keeping them going in real life – just keep an eye out on our Instagram and Facebook pages!

 

First look:

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This week’s table features a lot of play food! At the recommendation of my insta-buddy Julie Curtin, I decided to feature Eating the Alphabet alongside The Very Hungry Caterpillar as a way to explore healthy eating and occasional foods.

The inspiration:

The very lovely Johanna from Hello Pear sent me these gorgeous story stones and they’ve already proved a massive hit with both my children and one of my students too:

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Story stones are a fabulous way of helping children to retell stories in their own words. With my student we combined the stones with these days of the week blocks – both are available from Hello Pear. 

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Food glorious food!

For the rest of the set-up, I simply gathered together a range of play food into a felt IKEA shopping basket that would fit the  ‘healthy’ and ‘occasional’ categories for the children to sort:

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Want more? 

Check out the rest of the discovery table series by clicking on the links!

Discovery Table Week 1: Baby Clinic

Discovery Table Week 2: The Alphabet

Discovery Table Week 3: The Tiger Who Came to Tea

Discovery Table Week 4: The Ocean Waves

Discovery Table Week 5: Rainbow

Discovery Table Week 6: Nature

Discovery Table Week 7: Music

Discovery Table Week 8: Zoo!

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Discovery Table Week 8: Zoo!

We absolutely love going to the zoo. In fact, we have an annual membership to the National Zoo here in Canberra! For toddlers, there’s something so fascinating and exotic about zoo creatures.

So what’s on the table this week?

As always, this is about using what we have rather than going out and buying new items. We’ve found this to be a pretty great way to do themed rotations of toys. Every time a new table is introduced, older toys gain a fresh, new appeal!

 

An invitation to build a zoo!

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A basket of Grimm’s blocks and another filled with animals gave the kids the chance to design their own zoo. This activity is great for fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination too.

 

Dear Zoo story basket

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Now Zoey is a little older, she loves story baskets! Our latest is based on Dear Zoo. Wherever possible, we try to combine a story basket with our theme, but it does depend on the resources we have!

Additional Books:

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Whilst we have rather a lot of animal themed books, I stuck to just a few to avoid overwhelming Zoey. These simple board books are some of our favourites!

 

Jungle background:

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The colourful green background was a jungle themed craft we made last year. It’s brilliant for small world play so we’ve used it as part of our ‘build a zoo’ invitation. Its made from cardboard, egg cartons and chenille sticks!

 

Want more?

These posts are just for inspiration – your own discovery tables may look completely different based on your own child’s interests and the resources you have at home. We’re almost at the end of this 10 week series, so here’s a link to the previously featured tables:

Discovery Table Week 1: Baby Clinic

Discovery Table Week 2: The Alphabet

Discovery Table Week 3: The Tiger Who Came to Tea

Discovery Table Week 4: The Ocean Waves

Discovery Table Week 5: Rainbow

Discovery Table Week 6: Nature

Discovery Table Week 7: Music

 

 

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Discovery Table Week 7: Music

Confession here: I’m not very musical! HOWEVER, that doesn’t mean that I don’t encourage the children to explore and experiment with music because music is just brilliant for both creativity and self expression. The musical discovery table was inspired by recent musical purchases whilst on a coastal trip.

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The tambourine and coconut drum were bought on holiday recently. They only cost $15 each – bargain!

So what’s on the table this week?

This is the first time we’ve based a table on new purchases. Remember, the main reason we started this series was to make use of what we already had and to make sure that we were rotating toys often.

A saucepan and wooden spoon:

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If you don’t have musical instruments, try inventing your own. We personally love the saucepan and wooden spoon combination!

A basket of musical goodies:

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Zoey has been gifted a fair few musical toys. Also featured is the rainbow dance ribbon which is very popular in our house!

 

Books:

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Zoey loves the Nosy Crow board book ‘Listen to the Dance Music’ – she is often grooving along to the different styles of music!
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For Harrison, I put out the Usborne ‘Lift the Flap’ Science book to learn more about sounds. 

A selection of musical instruments:

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On the table we had the coconut drum, tambourine, a ukulele and the saucepan drum. Not in the photo but also on the table was a xylophone too!

 

Want more?

Whilst we’re heading towards the end of our 10 week Discovery Table series, you can check out older posts here:

Discovery Table Week 1: Baby Clinic

Discovery Table Week 2: The Alphabet

Discovery Table Week 3: The Tiger Who Came to Tea

Discovery Table Week 4: The Ocean Waves

Discovery Table Week 5: Rainbow

Discovery Table Week 6: Nature

 

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Discovery Table Week 6: Nature

As the weeks roll on, we’re definitely getting into a bit of a groove with our discovery tables. Both kids enjoy the introduction of new items each week and we’re finding that items are played with way more than if they were just stuck in the toy boxes.

Online, I intend to make this a 10 week series, but we will definitely be carrying it on for much longer in real life! With a new baby on the way next month, I need to be realistic about my work schedule.

What’s on the table this week?

As always, we have a collection of books and toys from our collection as well as a tray of nature finds to play with. You’ll find more details on the captions below:

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As soon as the new table is introduced, Zoey wants to explore!
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A variety of books for both the big kid and the little kid!

 

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Grimm’s pebbles and mushrooms along with some animal figurines in a basket.

 

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This Le Toy Van stacking puzzle offers an element of problem solving for our little learner.

 

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A basket of nature finds to explore. 

 

Learning Opportunities

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A wonder garden in miniature helped language development in a fun and engaging way. 

Exploring nature provides the opportunity for little learners to investigate the world around them. Link the nature theme with trips to the forest, local nature reserve or even the back garden to aid sensory exploration.

 

Want more?

Check out the following:

Discovery Table Week 1: Baby Clinic

Discovery Table Week 2: The Alphabet

Discovery Table Week 3: The Tiger Who Came to Tea

Discovery Table Week 4: The Ocean Waves

Discovery Table Week 5: Rainbow