The Rattle & The Nasty Beastie

The Rattle and The Nasty Beastie are stories that involve a great deal of active participation and interaction which can be used in a cross curricular way in an Early Years setting.

Both stories fit into the Listening and Talking strands within Literacy and English and some aspects within Expressive Arts such as ‘expressing yourself using voice, movement and expression’, ‘performing’ and ‘being part of an audience’. Experiences and outcomes in Health and Wellbeing are also encompassed in themes such as ‘all about me’, ‘my family’ and talking about what you can and can’t do at certain ages.

Other cross curricular strands which the stories address are Numeracy and Mathematics in The Rattle, with the use of positional language, counting and size, Sciences in The Nasty Beastie, with the seasons being introduced. Social Studies are touched on with the two different kinds of behaviour encountered – lack of consideration for others in The Rattle and the focus on friendship in The Nasty Beastie.

Each story can lead down different cross curricular strands which you can choose to explore for yourself in your educational setting.

‘Both stories are created to be interactive, participatory and to engage the listener’s senses as fully as possible. When telling these stories, create a visual background for them in your space. For example, The Nasty Beastie is set in autumn, so have autumn leaves and nuts with you for looking, smelling and touching opportunities.

‘Provide shakers for The Rattle – if you haven’t got any, you can create them using empty screw top plastic bottles with some split peas. Use puppets to help the telling and encourage children afterwards to re-tell using them.

‘If you don’t have puppets, see the instructions below on how to create your own by making them out of A5 envelopes and card.’

– Anne Pitcher
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