The Mud Kitchen
The four boys have the whole playground to choose from. Like a magnet, the mud kitchen calls their attention and keeps them engaged for the entire outdoor playtime. This dynamic group can on occasion be quite protective of their ideas and space but not now, as they move about the mud kitchen, there is a tangible harmonious and relaxed atmosphere. Their social interactions weave from solidarity, parallel and group play. They do not talk much yet everyone seems to know what is going on. Mud soups are stirred in vast quantities; ingredients are gathered, poured, dumped, spilled and scooped back. Intriguing, mucky, yucky desserts are concocted with this amazing mud. Sadly it is time to go in for lunch; the mud kitchen is a mess! The boys are encouraged to tidy up the space for future kitchen crews; some manage to steal a few extra minutes of exploration as they pick up containers and tools they did not get to work with. It is not easy to leave the mud kitchen...
"... exposure to natural environments strengthens children's relationship to nature, building the physical, social, emotional and intellectual connections that are necessary motivation for environmental stewardship. Natural environment also provide the perfect setting for holistic learning." (Exploring and Creativity/ Early learning Framework, p,23)
Follow the link below to read "The Ten Best Things about a Mud Kitchen" by Jenny, E.C.E. Children's Services Advisor and blogger at: LET THE CHILDREN PLAY http://www.letthechildrenplay.net/2011/08/10-reasons-why-we-should-let-children.html