We’ve been looking at life on the farm over the past couple of weeks and we’ve had lots of fun taking day trips, doing sensory activities and playing with a vintage farm set.
We kicked off our farmyard theme with a visit to Stockley Farm in Cheshire, which started off with a ride in a tractor and trailer.
This is such a great place for younger children because there is so much for them to do. During our visit we got to see lots of different farm animals such as pigs, calves, goats, sheep, chickens and horses. All of them loved attention and the boys loved stroking them. Oliver particularly liked the really soft bunny rabbits in the petting corner.
As well as all of the animals, there is a nature trail, a sand pit with diggers, a playground, an indoor soft play area, a bouncy castle, a ride on tractor park and an array of activities throughout the day. So if you have little ones, it is definitely worth a visit.
Tractor sensory play
This has been one of the most popular sensory activities we have done and because it is so quick and easy, I’ve also set it up during playdates as well. (You can read all about this activity here.)
Muddy farm animals
Oliver (the biggest toddler) wasn’t a fan of this one, but Elijah (the littlest toddler) had a great time with this one. He really enjoyed playing about in the homemade mud and then cleaning all of the animals in soapy water at the end. (You can read all about this activity here.)
Farmyard fun small world play
There is nothing better for budding imaginations than playing, so I love doing small world play. Both of the boys loved exploring all of the different textures and Oliver loved creating different scenarios on the farm. (You can read all about this activity here.)
Water beads duck pond
Oliver loved this activity. It was the first time we have actually used water beads in a sensory bin, so Oliver loved exploring the texture of them. This one isn’t suitable for babies or toddlers who still put things in their mouth because of the size of the water beads (and also they aren’t edible), so I did this activity once Elijah was napping and kept a really close eye on Oliver while he was playing. You can never be too careful after all.
The Maize Maze
When we first arrived at the maize maze, both of the boys were still groggy from their nap in the car and so I started to get a bit worried when Oliver decided he didn’t want to do the maze after all, once we were already lost in it. Thankfully shortly after this we stumbled across our first farmer’s board and after that both of the boys wanted to get on the lookout for the next one. Despite a few moments where I questioned myself for attempting to take two toddlers to a maize maze on my own, we actually had a lovely time and would highly recommend giving it a go.
Vintage toys – Farmyard play
As we were learning all about farm life, I dug my Dad’s old farmyard set out of the attic. This set was my Dad’s, then it kept at my grandmother’s for me and my cousins and now it has been passed down to my children. So this little farm set has been knocking about for about 40 years and has been added to over the decades. It has small parts and it obviously quite fragile, so again we only let Oliver play with it once Elijah was napping. He had a great time creating little stories and loved playing with the tractors, which we pretended were cutting down the crops.
I’m not very arty. I do try to be but it just isn’t one of my talents, so I wanted something easy that even the artistically challenged can do and settled on a collage. I printed off some pictures of farmyard life and items we get from the farm, such as milk, eggs, wool, straw bales and wheat. We bought a farmers magazine and then Oliver and I set to work creating a collage while Mr. C took Elijah swimming. This activity was perfect for teaching Oliver how to use scissors (child friendly plastic ones obviously) and we both had a great time talking about what produce we get from the farm while sticking all of the pictures onto our collage.
Old McDonald puppet show
If you are really rubbish at arty things like me, don’t fear! Even when your animal puppets look nothing like the animal you were aiming for, the kids will work it out anyway. Oliver (the biggest toddler) helped with the chicken puppet, which looks like it’s on the same level of artiness as the cow and the pig… which I made on my own.
Anyway, we sung old Macdonald while shaking musical instruments and using my homemade sock puppets during our interactive story time. Oliver loved the whole thing, Elijah spent the entire time trying to work out what animal I had made (see picture below). Regardless we all had fun and it made our interactive story time a little more creative and fun.
So there you have it, our fortnight of farmyard fun. We’ve really enjoyed learning about farmyard life and are looking forward to our next theme, which is castles! Obviously we will post all about this theme over the next couple of weeks.
Note: All sensory play, messy play and arts and crafts activities should be supervised at all times. Neither I nor Our Fairytale Adventure hold any responsibility for any injury or damage caused while taking part in any of these activities.