Wednesday, 9 April 2014


It must be a primary thing.  I'm sure that when I was a secondary teacher I wasn't drawn to toy shops and toy departments as much as I am now.

This afternoon I took my daughters to a local craft establishment to buy some bits and pieces to make Easter cards with. We weren't very successful on the Easter card front, but I find these. In the Children's department.  In the packet there are three bundles each of five person shapes. They only cost £2.25, and I had to have them.  I didn't know what I was going to do with them but I had to buy them anyway.

When I got home I posted this picture on Twitter and invited suggestions as to what I could do with them.  Here are the suggestions.  Thanks everyone!

The lovely Julie Prince has found somewhere to buy them online if you can't make it to the northeast.

I have a variety of different toys that I use in my lessons:

  • Different coloured balls for playing passing games.  I use them with Year 1, who know colours, to practise por favor and gracias.  They ask for the colour they want and then say "Por favor", then they say "Gracias" when they receive it.
  • A giant foam microphone for speaking practice
  • Giant plastic tweezers for younger children to use to pick up, for example, all the blue minibeasts, five minibeasts.  I have also used them with butter beans masquerading as seeds, and Year 1 had to pick up the right number of seeds.
  • Percussion instruments (pinched from my children) for providing the rhythm section of raps in the classroom.
  • Finger puppets and glove puppets.  I have lots of these!
I also liberate quite a lot of my children's toys, to do activities such as this gender sort for Year 3:

I put all the toys in a bag, then the children took it in turns to take out a toy.  I said the name of the toy in Spanish and they had to put it in the blue basket for masculine, pink basket for feminine.  Thanks to Vicky Cooke for the idea!

I also have a very large box of Playmobil.  My husband keeps threatening to put it in the loft, so my daughters and I defiantly play with it.  I have used it for animation (Madame Poule) and it has been known to appear in some of my resources.

There has been quite a lot of chat on Twitter over the last couple of days about ways to use the plastic fillable eggs that you can buy at the moment.  You can put all sorts of things inside them, and I also like this idea for using them for a matching activity.

What are your favourite toys for using in your lessons?

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