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New Years Play Resolutions

January 1, 2017  |  Claire Russell Anyone else wake up this morning wanting to write their first blog post?! Nope? Just me then! I've been wanting to do it for some time and even spent the Christmas holidays reading 'Mum Blogging for Dummies'! No joke! So what better time to start than on the first day of a new year.   Hmmm, so what do I write about? What do I know about? What do I want to share with everyone? Well as a full time Mum, I could share parenting tips and advice however I certainly don't think I'm in the position to do so. I'm totally making it all up as I go along and hoping for the best!...

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The Naptime 'To Do' List

January 17, 2017  |  Claire Russell As a teacher, due to the workload you are entitled to half a day every week for non-contact time. That's time away from the classroom to plan, prepare and assess. This time was always so valuable as a teacher because the more you got done in this time, the less you had to do at home. Well sort of. That was always the plan however, a teachers workload is never done. There is always more to do and you know deep down you will never get to the bottom of the 'To do' list.   I used to love this PPA time. I would always plan what I was going to do and how I...

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Lost in Play

March 28, 2017 Claire Russell I've always believed that play is a universal language for children. We often hear educators proclaiming the importance of children playing (me included!) and it is true. There are so so many benefits to child development through the art of play BUT its only a worthwhile cause if the child is engaged in QUALITY play.   Quality play is when a child is engaged, engrossed and following their interests. This means they are able to completely lose themselves in their imagination and ignore any distractions around them. However, children need to be taught how to play, how to use their toys and how to use their surroundings.   For example, if you set up a shop for your child...

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Drowning in Toys

January 9, 2017  |  Claire Russell Hands up if your house is currently swamped in toys. Yep?! Yeah me too. Mason's birthday is two weeks before Christmas during the month of December our house is suddenly awash with toys, toys and more toys. So I have a suggestion to keep on top of it all but I warn you there are several stages; making a start, wishing you'd never started and then relief when its done!!   Trust me it will be worth it, it just takes a bit of sorting. I'd suggest a Sunday and preferably when the kids aren't around because we just know they will want to play with EVERYTHING! So when the husband says he's going...

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Play Cupboard Essentials

May 2, 2017  |  Claire Russell I am often asked about the resources I keep and how I store them for the activities I do with my toddler. So here it is folks, I've finally sat down to write a list of the items I feel are essential for setting up play activities.    I am hoping when you read this you will be pleasantly surprised at how many of the items you already have and that the rest could probably be located in a local pound shop, charity shop or a second hand site like Gumtree.   As I always say, you do not need a house full of expensive toys to keep a young child entertained!!   Essentials: -...

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