NURSERY children at King’s Ely Acremont are building a full scale wooden boat for their playground.
The children, who are aged between two and four, came up with the idea themselves when planning the term’s project on materials. When one of the children suggested building a boat from wood, the staff initially visualised something smaller. But when another child suggested making pirate hats to wear in the boat, they soon realised that what the children really wanted was a full-sized boat to play in.
Head of King’s
Nursery, Marian Brogan, explained how they made it all possible: “We found a boat kit online that uses cable ties to join the wooden pieces together, which is perfect for the children. When the kit arrived in half term, the children set about laying out and checking off the pieces, using the instruction diagram as a guide, which
helped them with their counting and planning skills.
“They have been able to do most of the work themselves and every child in the Nursery has used the hand drill. Before allowing them to use the hand drill, however, we encouraged them to discuss why it was dangerous and we all agreed sensible rules that would make it safe for them to use; children are much better at abiding by rules when they have agreed them amongst themselves.”
Marian added: “There is no better way of learning than through doing something yourself. The children have been involved with decision making throughout and will end up with a playground toy that they can take pride in, knowing they built it themselves. In addition, the whole project, including parts, tape and paint, will have cost less than £200.”
Now that the bulkheads are in, the children are almost ready to paint the boat and they hope it will be ready to play in this summer. Then all they will need to do is make some pirate hats!