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Potato Penguins!

As part of our winter themed learning through play week, we looked at and learned about some polar habitats. I used my visual vocab book for this (you can find the link to this resource below). Arabella loves looking at real images of things and talking about what she can see. I find that talking about pictures really helps her to pick up and learn new words. We also watched a video from KS1 BBC Bitesize about what a polar habitat is (link also below). It was a short video which was perfect for the attention span of a preschooler and she enjoyed seeing and naming the different animals. One of which was a penguin, hence why we made potato penguins! This is where the fun really began - another excuse for her to get messy, busy and creative! We swapped the paintbrushes and used a different painting technique by printing with the potatoes, which of course added to the excitement! Any time we do printing with an object that involves painting the object, it always ends in painting and printing with her whole hands!! Does anyone else's child do this?!

What you need:

  • White card/paper

  • Large potatoes

  • Black, white and orange paint (I use Crayola washable paints because...well...when painting with a toddler it's the only way to save everything!!)

  • Goggly eyes

  • A paintbrush

What I did:

  1. Cut a potato in half (this will be the main body of the penguin)

  2. Cut the other half of the potato into a quarter (this will be the penguin's tummy).

  3. Paint the first half black and print it onto card/paper. This is your penguin.

  4. Paint the quarter white and print it on top of the black to make the penguin's tummy.

  5. Add on goggly eyes

  6. Add an orange beak and feet with either a paintbrush or finger prints.

Learning opportunities:

  • Expressive Arts & Design - Experimenting with colours and marks - Using different media to create a new effect - Constructing with a purpose in mind - Capturing experiences and creating simple representations with paint

  • Communication & Language - Learning new vocabulary - Using talk to share ideas, thoughts, ask questions and explain what they are doing.

  • Physical development - Develops fine motor skills - Using one handed tools - Showing preference for a dominant hand

  • Understanding the World - Noticing detailed features in environment - Talking and asking questions about the natural world and animals they have observed

  • Personal, Social & Emotional Development - Improves self confidence & awareness - selecting and using resources - Talking about interests and opinions



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