ART GALLERY ON THE BEACH
Equipped with buckets, off you go to gather pebbles, shells, sticks, seaweed or whatever would work to make a piece of art, be it a 3D picture or a sculpture.
Get creative and if the whole family get involved, you would end up with an eclectic art gallery on the beach. If you’ve spent a whole afternoon at this, it might be nice to get your phone out and take some pics of the works of art (before they are washed away!!) Wouldn’t that make for a pretty photo collage on the wall at home! I know the kids would be very proud.
PERIWINKLES : GATHER AND COOK
It’s 50/50 among my family and friends as regards liking or detesting the feast that is a dish of periwinkles. Personally, I just love them. I don’t know why I do, they’re not pretty and the texture really is snail-like! Maybe it’s the hit of protein that makes me feel good. Maybe it’s the fact that I’ve hunted for, gathered, prepared and cooked them that thrills me (GO ME!)
All you need to gather up the winkles is a bucket to hold them and some sea water. They can be pulled from rocks without much effort, making it a rewarding task for even the very young. The sea water will keep them alive until you get to your hob. Here is the recipe we follow when cooking our periwinkles;
You will need:
Periwinkles (as many as you could gather), Water, Salt, Saucepan, Straight Pins.
Rinse the periwinkles to get rid of any sand or other debris. Make sure they are all alive by checking that they are closed. If unsure, give any periwinkles that are open a little knock against the counter top. If they close their door, they’re alive. If not, throw them out!
Pop them into a saucepan. Add a generous amount of salt and mix well. Add boiling water and simmer for 3 minutes. It’s important to stop after 3 minutes, if left for much longer they will become brittle and difficult to take from their shells.
After cooking, throw out any periwinkles that have not opened up as these are bad.
When ready, leave to cool a little (periwinkles are tasty both warm and cold and they will stay good to eat for several hours). Let everyone have their own straight pin, pop the little ‘door’ from the opening of the shell and slide the winkle out with the sharp pin. YUMMEEE!!
NUMERACY & LITERACY SKILLS
No need to feel your children are missing out on their academic skills if they spend all their days on the beach this summer (chance would be a fine thing). You can help keep their brains ticking as they work on their reading, writing and maths.
All you need for these activities is a stick or the stipe of a seaweed (that’s the thick, trunky bit). You can use your finger too, but I find mine becomes numb and cold (then I don’t want to play anymore!)
Off you go and write/scribble/draw.
I find children are very enthusiastic about playing spelling/rhyming games on the sand in the great outdoors (I wonder are they as enthusiastic in the classroom with their long suffering teachers?)
One game could be to take turns with writing rhyming words. Another one is to write some random words and let the children make up a story with the words as inspiration. Really, most writing activities that can be done at a desk can be done on the sand.
A great way to help a child practice some maths concepts that he/she just ‘don’t get’ in the classroom, is to turn the problem into some real hands-on learning. Little pebbles or shells can be used to ad together or subtract from one another in a physical manner and not merely digits written on a white page.
These beach objects can be grouped together by size or colour, and patterns can be made. All these little games with help with maths concepts and spacial awareness.
For more ideas, check out more fun at the beach