Introducing our children to the different types of Metallics and the varied explorations they could embark on has been a great adventure. As practitioners, we love to observe our little ones eagerly examining these shiny, interesting resources. They are utterly fascinated, reaching out to touch the Metallic shapes and expressing delight at the reflections they create.
Here is a list of some of the Metallics that we have in our setting:
- Mirrored Pebbles
- Metallic Silver Stacking Arches, Crosses and Zig Zags
- Metallic Boulders
- Mirrored Stacking Donuts
- Metallic Distorting Mirror Construction Cubes
- Metallic Elephant Numbr and Counting Set
Some children love exploring the Distorting Mirror Construction Cubes . They are fascinated by the upside-down world they present from some of the surfaces (concaved sides). Others are entranced by the varying reflections in the other surfaces of the cube, each one mirroring awe and wonder in their eyes. For the older children, this can lead to interesting conversations about difference and perception.
One of the key observations is how different resources from TTS’s Marvellous Metallics Collection inject an extra dimension into children’s play. One child, particularly interested in architecture, constructed new buildings with reflective surfaces that looked like modern structures seen in images of big cities. This familiar block building took on an entirely new aspect with the introduction of the various Metallics. Interactions altered in novel and interesting ways, piquing the interest of children who would usually shy away from block play.
Multifaceted and versatile resources
We appreciate the diversity that the different types of Metallics offer. Their different shapes and sizes invite various uses, from creating imaginative role-play scenarios to exploring scientific concepts like light reflection. Watching the children experiment whilst combining them with other materials like voiles and fabrics, or even using them in conjunction with the Immersive Projector to create interesting shadows and landscapes is amazing. Such big concepts are experienced by younger children through experiential play, with seeds of knowledge planted for future learning. We’ve also seen children express a myriad of emotions and thoughts while engaging with these resources. Some show excitement, others plunge straight into investigation, while a few sit back, watching and processing the new experiences.
Cultivating curiosity and critical thinking abilities
Introducing the different types of Metallics into our setting has supported us in triggering a curious instinct in our children. They wonder about the nature of reflections, the properties of light, and the balancing of shapes. They spur themselves on to ask questions that lead them on varied paths of discovery. Witnessing children collaborate to understand these complex concepts and discussing their findings is a testament to the power of these resources, developing important skills such as critical thinking and problem-solving.
Embracing children’s interests and provocations
We use the Marvellous Metallics in multiple ways, aligning with our children’s interests and by creating invitations to play, whether it’s building lunar landscapes for space enthusiasts, creating a dazzling shiny collection for our youngest children to explore, or by adding them to different areas of learning. We cater to the individual needs of our children, using these resources both one-on-one and with groups, utilising our understanding of their preferences and developmental needs.
Incorporating the Metallics into our setting
We have incorporated the various Metallic resources into different parts of our nursery, adapting their placement as required. Sometimes they feature as the centrepiece in a larger area or serve as an enticing addition to a cosy corner or sensory space, transforming each section into an inviting learning area. What has surprised us the most is how they can be used within the different rooms and age groups, but offering something different in each.
As practitioners, we understand the importance of communication and language. These Metallic resources offer golden opportunities for language enrichment and skill development across a wide range of areas. An unassuming yet impactful resource, the various Metallics have truly earned their place in our setting. They have become a welcomed addition to our stimulating and engaging learning environment.
Many thanks to the team at Dukes and Duchesses Day Nursery in Liverpool for sharing their experiences with the Metallics.