This afternoon, we transformed our play tray into a muddy garden area. I emptied half a bag of compost into the tray and invited the children to join it.
Not having a garden of our own to play in, Jasmine and Sonny (and their friend Lexi) were excited and could not wait to get stuck in.
I gave them some simple tools (spades and rakes), a bucket and a couple of cups. They began by sifting the compost through their fingers, holding and releasing it. Then they raked through it and started to sort it into piles.
They even tried using the bucket to build "mudcastles".
We added dinosaurs and dragons to the muddy tray and the children walked them through the soil, putting on voices and roaring. Roaring is one of Sonny's favourite things to do!
They played happily, together.
Next, I brought out the seeds. We had sweet pea and sunflowers, coriander, cress and tomato seeds (though I think most of the latter ended up outside the tray!).
Each child had a tray or a pot, some compost and some seeds.
I told them that the seeds must be pushed into the compost until they could no longer be seen.
However, he forgot to remove the seeds first, simply burying the whole packet!
We added water, both to the trays of seeds and to the compost in the play tray. It turned into a very messy activity but was something that the children all very much enjoyed. I am sure that they will also enjoy caring for the their little kitchen garden in the days and weeks to come as well.
This is my entry into the Center Parcs family breaks competition.