An invitation to learn and play…
This was fun to set up and even more fun to watch my kids explore, hear their questions and find the answers together.
Currently, we are learning about Australia, so we set up a Great Barrier Reef habitat. I filled our water table and added some shells, pretty stones, plants and Toob toys.
I love how each child set up the habitat differently. Our water table is the Step2 WaterWheel Activity Play Table.
On our table, we have cards on our magnet board and a basket of themed books to explore together. The laminated animal cards are from Walk Beside Me.
Next, we played with some (mostly) land-based animals. Here’s our sand-filled table ready to be explored. We’ve also used rice to fill the table for other habitats we’ve made. The kids made the flags, which can be found at Lessons Learnt Journal. The animal and person figures are from The Land Down Under Toob.
This set-up inspired many questions. “What do dingos eat?” “What kind of lizard is this?” I sat nearby with my laptop and our basket of books. Together, we’d look in our books and read, or find a short video to watch. National Geographic Kids has some great options. YouTube does as well (I pre-screened them while they played with the figures and sand in the table). PBS Kids also had some great shows that we watched later. Our favorite was the Wild Kratts.
We talked about the specific types of habitats for each animal and they moved them around the container accordingly: tropical birds to the north in the palm trees, frill-necked lizard in the desert, crocodile in the water, koala in the trees and so on.
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