Froebel’s Occupations

This series of presentations by educators from Guildford Nursery School are offered as a means of sharing practice. Each one is delivered by two educators and is full of practical ideas that listeners can employ immediately in their setting or school. Each course or presentation is based on one of Froebel’s Occupations. Froebel’s Occupations are practical, real-life experiences which promote and enable creativity, communication, the development of physical and problem-solving skills. The Occupations are enjoyable, engaging and meaningful for children of all ages. They largely involve the use of natural materials or man-made resources made from natural materials.

Learn how to develop these experiences with your children. Learn about the endless possibilities and enormous benefits for all children.

Block play, a world of open ended possibilities

“As an open-ended resource, block play lends itself to any curriculum based on holistic child development.” (Whinnett, 2020, P5)

This presentation will give listeners an appreciation of block play and the endless opportunities it offers children. It explores the stages of block play and the significance of the adult role. It includes Froebelian practice prompts on how to embed block play in your setting.

So much more than a needle: Sewing, weaving and threading in the Early Years

“To learn a thing in life and through doing is much more developing, cultivating and strengthening than to learn it merely through the verbal communication of ideas.” (Froebel)

This presentation considers the importance and relevance of sewing, weaving, and threading in early childhood development. You will hear and see practical examples of how to incorporate them into the classroom. Learn about the benefits of using recycled materials and promoting sustainability. Watch to learn how sewing, weaving and threading can enhance fine motor skills, creativity, and problem-solving abilities in young children.

Cooking the Froebelian way with children in the Early Years

“Learning should be connected to children’s own lives and experienced as a meaningful whole so that children can connect new ideas to what they already know.” (Tovey, 2020, p.4)

This presentation considers the importance, relevance and benefits of cooking with young children. It includes Froebelian practice prompts on equipment, recipes, managing risk and many practical ideas. You will gain in confidence and knowledge to cook with young children including those with additional needs.

“As a universal feature of daily living, ‘food preparation’ crosses all cultures and carries the potential for uniting families, friends, strangers and cultures in promotion of shared learning at the deepest level.” (McCormick, 2012, p.153 in ‘Early Childhood Practice: Froebel today’ ed. Bruce)

The wonder of woodwork in the Early Years

“A Froebelian environment provides a rich array of genuine ‘real world’ experiences which offer exciting opportunities for learning and which engage children’s interests.” (Tovey, 2017, p.37)

This presentation considers the plentiful benefits of woodwork with children aged 3-5 years. It includes Froebelian practice prompts on how to start, how to manage the risks and experiences to offer the children. You will be reassured that you too can offer woodwork to all young children including those with additional needs.

Why clay? Exploring and working with clay in the Early Years

“The importance of direct experience and the way it makes possible the development of real learning cannot be over-emphasized.” (Bruce 2004: 126)

This presentation considers using clay with children aged 2-4 years and how clay is such a valuable resource for children’s development and learning. Learn about the history of clay, its benefits for children’s language and motor skills, and loads of practical ideas. There are also Froebelian practice prompts on setting up a clay area and the importance of a proper clean up!