This year we’re embracing the ‘bring a stick to school’ day as part of an initiative created by The Muddy Puddle Teacher. On Monday 14th October, we ask that all children bring a stick into school. The stick needs to be no longer than the length of your child’s arm. We advise that you check the stick for any unknown animal mess beforehand but there’s no need to clean it or dress it up! All that’s needed is a nice, freshly muddied stick.
Why are we doing this?
It’s fun and it’s a great way to get children to be more active. All while they have fun in the great outdoors! There are lots of educational benefits too. We’ve all said it in the past. The child plays more with the cardboard box than the present inside it! And that’s what this day is all about. Allowing children to imagine, create and problem solve with simple tools.
Today’s child has so much more entertainment available than previous generations and sometimes we need to be mindful of that. We want this day to be about the simple pleasures of life. This day is designed to encourage your children have lots of chats about plastics and learn about how harmful they can be. Children will get the chance to learn about natural and manmade materials, where sticks come from, the names of trees and what mud actually is!
So what will the day look like?
It completely depends! Each class will be working on different areas of the curriculum so we’ll be taking a blank canvas approach. Some classes might choose to use their sticks to enhance their topics. Other lessons might be more child-led with children creating whatever they want out of their sticks. Children get very creative with their inventions! It’s likely that some may create wands, horses, superhero power charges, stick men or even survival tools.
But why is this day so important for children?
Children will get the opportunity to touch and interact with mud! We already know that mud contains good bacteria. This keeps our children healthy and reduces their allergies while they connect with nature. Some of the activities will take place outside and some classes may spend the whole day outside! Others may choose to be more selective and have a few sessions outside, depending on the weather. Either way, the children will be outside at some point of the day!
How will we keep safe?
At the start of the day, we’ll use our Muddy safe stick song to remind children of safety: “sticks go low they tickle our toe, if they go high, they poke us in the eye”. We’ll then watch and listen to them throughout the day to make sure they stay safe. All of our activities comply with our policies on safety, so rest assured we’ve covered all the necessary bases!
What do you need to do?
First go for a walk with your child and find a stick. When you find a suitable stick, remind your child of the ‘feet first, then hands’ method. This method is a great way to teach children about safety. Especially if they’re trying to retrieve broken glass or animal mess. If your children are younger, we recommend you supervise these activities.
Once your child has found a stick, get them to bring it into school. Ask your child to keep the stick low. Try using our lovely little rhyme: “sticks stay low they tickle our toe, if they go high, they poke us in the eye”. We’ll be using this rhyme on the day, so it’s good for them to practice this beforehand.
We also suggest that your child brings in wellies, waterproof clothing and extra layers just in case it’s particularly cold on the day.
Thank you for your much needed support! We can’t wait to see what our Muddy inventors get up to!