I am delighted to have Kierna Corr as my guest blogger. Kierna is the nursery class teacher at Windmill Integrated Primary in Dungannon, Northern Ireland. She is also the Northern Ireland Representative for the World Forum in Early Care and Play. Kierna has been teaching nursery for over 12 years and she is passionate about outdoor learning and the impact that this has on children’s learning and development. She has formed positive links with kindergartens in Norway and Sweden through the British Council’s Comenius Programme. She has adopted a unique approach to outdoor play. Kierna’s class go outside every day, no matter what the weather, as the school provides appropriate outdoor clothing.
Kierna tell us that “June 29th is International Mud Day; this is the second year of this world wide event. The original event came about as a way for some orphans in Nepal to connect with nature and when this story was shared at the World Forum in Early Care and Education in Belfast in 2009, many others decided to take up this challenge.
At a time when more and more young children are being denied opportunities to play outside and actually connect with nature, this is becoming a truly important event in many people’s calendars across the globe.
For the second year, however, on the actual day I won’t have any children at school, but as everyday is a mud day in my class this will make no difference!
I have a dedicated area of the playground set aside as a mud patch or digging area. The children are allowed to add as much water as they want to make it is mucky and muddy as possible.
This means when we read Michael Rosen’s ‘We’re going on a Bear Hunt’, the children really know how squelchy mud sounds and how slow you move through it.
At the start of the new school year there will always be some children who don’t want to get dirty but this ‘fear’ is usually overcome by the time they are leaving to go onto the next class.
I also take my class on a monthly trip to local forest sites where they can jump, lie and sit in as mud as they want. They learn very quickly that mud is not a dangerous thing, it cleans off easily enough and it is so much fun!
So here’s to lots of messy, muddy fun on the 29th June and I hope everyone gets to enjoy the wonders of some ooey gooey mud.”
Keep an eye out for many other blog posts from around the world on all the muddy fun activities on the 29th June.
Would love to see your Mud day stories and photographs.”
Please visit Kierna’s website for more information:
Follow Kierna on Twitter: www.twitter.com @CiarnaC
Laura Henry @LauraChildcare