Exploring and using media and materials

  • A useful article about exploratory play with clay from Playful Learning.
  • An interesting blog about drawing as meaning making, based on Reggio Emilia principles from Debi Keyte-Hartland.
  • A brief reminder about the importance of creativity, including music, in the early years from Early Arts.
  • Singing new songs - excellent article by Marjorie Ouvry, an expert in music and early years
  • Music – this article makes the case of the benefits for young children of experiencing live music from PACEY.
  • Highly recommended, free booklet about woodwork in the early years is available from Community Playthings
  • Rice and ice – unusual idea for a cross-curricular tactile activity from Learning 4 Kids.
  • An article and interesting ideas for water play is here – professional judgement is recommended re some of the ‘water play enhancers’ suggestions! From Community Playthings.
  • Expressive arts - stay outside to explore sound from Teachwire.
  • Ideas for setting up well-organised exploratory activities with paint from Fairy Dust Teaching.
  • Organise your resources  for loose parts exploration – useful photos and top tips to support clear and accessible organisation from Fairy Dust Teaching.
  • Idea for a design activity based on Kandinsky’s circles from Fairy Dust Teaching.
  • Lego and small world play: scroll down this site for ideas combining dolls houses and Lego from Creative QT.
  • Blog from Alistair Bryce Clegg about presenting and developing play with sand using cardboard dividers
  • A simple way to make a cardboard easel from Artbar.
  • Ice! Try these activities from Science Sparks.
  • Top tips and inspiration from Alistair Bryce-Clegg in this new Transient Autumn Art blog post. These outdoor artworks by James Brunt will inspire you and your children.
  • Although not early years specific, the Go Noodle dynamic music, movement and mindfulness site from the US is recommend by nursery colleagues. See also the Melody music site from Cbeebies.
  • Browse this extensive collection of creative possibilities, collated by EarlyArts.
  • A great handbook packed with creative learning ideas is available via Octopus Inc.
  • A good idea from Kids STEAM Lab on mark making using Lego.

Being imaginative

  • Thought-provoking articles, including several about ‘process over product’ by the Curiosity Approach.

Guidance by the Early Years Team in Brighton and Hove suggests ways to develop this area of learning:

Expressive Arts and Design (PDF479KB)