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Understanding the World

Understanding the World

Activities develop working scientifically, geographical awareness, historical awareness and understanding of different families and communities


Activities for scientific exploration and investigation

• Play ‘what’s in the box’ feely game – make a hole in a cardboard box – put in an object (key, ball, cotton wool, spoon, straw)– use words to describe how the object feels before saying what it is…hard, smooth, round, soft, bendy, bumpy, etc.

• Play ‘guess the smell’ game – select food/objects/materials with a smell (chocolate, coffee, lemon, fabric softener, cheese, mint) use a blind fold and guess the smell.

• Plant a sunflower seed – talk about sun, soil, water to help it to grow. Care for seed, and plant in big pot or garden when it grows. Talk about the plant parts – stem, leaves, roots, flower head, petals, etc.

• Make a mini beast house in the garden/yard – place empty plant /yoghurt pot/cardboard, old fabric in a pile in a corner and leave for a few days. Carefully move part of the pile and take a look – what is living in the mini-beast house? Search on google to find out more about the creature/s. Take a photograph or draw a picture to show your teacher.

• Play what is it made of ?’ game around your house or on your daily walk. How many things can you spot made of plastic, metal, wood, glass, cardboard, fabric. Make a list.

• On a sunny day play ‘don’t stand on my shadow’ with a family member – run around moving your shadow – try to stop your partner from standing on it – if they do it’s their turn to have a go. Using whole body or hands make shadow puppets…..what can you make?


Activities for geographical awareness

• On your daily walk or from different windows in your house what can you see? Make a list of all the physical features such as grass, field, hedge, hill, mountain, sea, river, woods, etc. Make a list of all the human features – buildings including houses, shops, church, mosque, school; road, motorway, fences/gates, traffic lights, pedestrian crossings, bridge, railway lines, street signs, etc.

• Draw a map of your street, or the journey you make on your daily walk….include all the things you see.

• Draw the layout of your house - what rooms do you have upstairs and down stairs? Draw your kitchen /bedroom /lounge – what furniture do you have? Where is the door and the window?

• Look at your story books to see if you can find different places – seaside, countryside, town, city, woods, farm, zoo, park. How many different places did you find?

• Play ‘what do you find at the seaside’ game – take turns with family members to name something you would see at the seaside – how many did you find? Play this for other places – your street, the city, under the sea, the jungle, on the farm, etc.

• Make a weather chart – make a simple chart and draw a weather symbol for the different weather in a day /week – sunny, cloudy, windy, raining, thunder. Make up your own symbols and make up symbols for cold, warm, hot.


Activities for historical awareness

• Draw a picture/timeline to show the things you do during the day – morning, afternoon, evening – include mealtimes, school work, play, games, daily exercise, calls to family members, and other activities.

• Play a time word game – what did I do yesterday? What am I doing today? What am I going to do tomorrow? E.g. ‘yesterday I rang my Nana, today I am playing in garden and tomorrow I am going to make cakes.

• With a family member draw a family tree – include parents, grandparent/great grandparents aunts/uncles and cousins – extend the tree as far as you can.

• Think of some questions you can ask a family member – parent/grandparent/aunt or uncle – about when they were a child - favourite food /toy/game/place they visited /holiday/jobs at home, etc. Face time or call a family member and interview them /ask questions with the help of a family member.

• Make a time capsule and put it in the garden /local community – include a drawing and some items that relate to the time we are living in now