Since making the decision to get our Early Learning ball rolling in a slightly more planned and intentional manner, we knew we wanted to start on a mile stone, and we wanted to mark the occasion.
So, with a collection of themes in mind for the coming months, permitting absorption in all that the changing seasonal environment can offer, we chose the theme of the seaside, beaches and rockpools to get us started with the last of the brighter weather, landing right on Squirrels 18th month day!
We are blessed to live on the southern coast of England, surrounded by natural beauty and a variety of different seaside experiences, from docks and estuaries to pebble beaches and jutting cliffs, to sandy bays and rocky build ups. We are rich in geological history, and celebrate our local land for its fossil fame, nick named ‘The Jurassic Coast’, but that is an entirely different unit theme for the future!
We selected, from our choices, a recommended family beach in a touristy spot, that regardless of the footfall, was spacious and surprisingly diverse in its rockpool life and shell types! We invited along some close friends, packed the obligatory buckets, spades and a net and spent a long cheerful day exploring.
The novelty of having ones wellies full of water was not lost on Squirrel.
We introduced the word and sign for ‘crab’, and he got it instantly, enjoying pointing them out to us with exuberance as the ones big enough to see scuttled around beneath us.
We also spotted tiny fish which we later identified as Rockpool Blennys, some shrimp, various anemones and lots of hermit crabs, including one that we had to prise away from Squirrel, who had ‘collected’ him into his bucket and given him an excited shake, the poor kid being jolly pleased with being handed a splendid shell,completely oblivious to its inhabited state – don’t worry! The hermit was replaced back in his pool and took his shell out of reach!
Leo practiced a lot of previously learned words and signs too, including ‘bird’, squawking back at the clanning seagulls, and asking inquisitively about everything from the boats on the water to the weaving, tubey piles of sand covering the beach, the tell tale calling card of lug worms.
We collected many beautiful stones and shells to use in our approaching activities, and with heavy buckets, enjoyed dog spotting while we walked along the esplanade after a carvery late lunch all together.
A rather lovely way to kick start the rest of our lives together, intentional learning as we live and play.