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Sunday, 5 October 2014

A very creepy crawly review!

A few weeks ago this big box of goodies arrived on my doorstep from Learning Resources UK.

I was seriously like a kid at Christmas!! 

I have been meaning to do this review for the last week, but I have been poorly (there's a horrible bug going around and kids and teachers are dropping like flies!) and next week we also have observations - the second most dreaded O word in teacher vocabulary.

...anyhow, I tore open the box to find these 3 GORGEOUS games inside!!

Now, I'm really grateful that these games had a maths focus. My Reception room is the 'Creative/Literacy/Investigation' room, so my kiddos don't always access maths resources as they tend to follow where I am. Therefore, I was pleased that I had something that would allow me to bring maths to them!

Firstly, I'll talk about the 'Shapes Don't Bug Me' set. This set is SO cute and my kids LOVE playing this game - it's now a part of their every day play.

It has 20 double sided activity cards and loads of translucent shapes which means that they can still see the picture underneath - which is the main thing that I really liked about this!! I laminated the cards for extra durability (and because my manager says that I LOVE laminating things - she's right, I do!)

Next up is the 'Buggy Balance' game. Firstly, I put this on my investigation table for the children to 'have a go' - but they soon discovered that it makes a phenomenal catapult and there were little buggies and leaves flying all over the classroom!! 

I promptly put it back in the cupboard until I had time to sit with them and show them how to use it properly!! Haha!

When I sat with them, they spent AGES investigating how many leaves weighed the same as 3 caterpillars etc. This is a GREAT activity for mathematical language!! They really enjoy this, and now I can put it out without risk of losing an eye from a kamikaze caterpillar! I can't wait to use this when we move on to measurement, and this would be a great activity from Reception - Year 2, plus you don't just have to weigh the bugs, you can use the balance to weigh anything!!

They really enjoyed using the lovely counters on their own, sorting, counting and even making patterns using them - again, this is a super versatile product and it can be used in so many different ways - the children thought of loads of ways to use them that I hadn't even thought about!

Finally is the '100 Ant Picnic' - when I first opened this up, I didn't think I would be able to use it until the end of the year with my Reception kiddos - but I have some super high flyers who already recognise most numbers to 100 (even at 4!! Can you believe it?!) so this activity has actually been reeeeally great for my higher achievers! 

Out of all of the resources, I have used this one the least, but I know that once my kiddos build upon their mathematical knowledge this resource will be absolutely invaluable because it is SO versatile!! We can practise odd/even, we can skip count with it, look at number patterns, use it for working on 100 square to add/subtract etc.. it really is a fantastic resource - and if I was still in Year 1 I know that this would be getting use on a daily basis!!

I really cannot recommend Learning Resources UK enough - their products are such fantastic quality (these games have withstood 60 Reception children, that's testimony enough!!!) and I cannot wait to buy more of their amazing products - I have my eye on their super cute Maths counters!!