A day in the life of WinSport’s Early Childhood Development program – The Perfect Mud Cake

WinSport’s Early Explorers program – an early childhood development program for children ages three to five – builds the physical and cognitive development of children in an engaging indoor and outdoor environment. The idea to create the program was inspired from WinSport’s legacy, which was formed by relentless, bold, and fearless individuals. The organization’s goal is to continue that legacy by creating the next generation of leaders – children who will make an impact and continue to inspire their community. The outdoor play component of our ECD program is complimented by the newly designed calm and nurturing indoor learning space. Below is an example of a learning story written by WinSport Early Childhood educator Brittany Caldwell.

It was a warm Winter day and the snow was slushy and the dirt was peaking out. The draw of the mud, snow, buckets and shovel seemed strong. “E” found a large bucket of dirt and began mixing all the water she could find into the bucket. Using a small spoon, she had transformed the bucket from dry dirt, to a fabulous mixture. I offered her a rake to keep her mittens and sleeves dry and she turned the rake into a propeller for mixing. “A” joined in the mixing and claimed they were making batter to make a “Mud Cake.”

“We don’t want it to be too hard or too soft.”

“We need more water, we are putting dry stuff in it.”

“I gotta get more water, that’s what bakes the cake, so that’s the problem.”

“Snow is made of water, let’s add more snow.”

As we continued our work on our perfect mud batter, we finally reached a consistency that the girls agreed would make the perfect cake. Then the girls began to make their cakes. They worked on filling each pot. No matter how big or small. They made hot chocolate, muffins, heart cakes and more! Soon every dish in our mud kitchen was full of the perfect batter. We had found the best way to spend a warm winter afternoon. No matter what projects we develop and the fun we have, we can always rely on making mud to be the best way to spend a warm and wet day outside.

The way mud lures in the children is fascinating. It seems reliable for the Explorers’ – something they can always depend on. No matter the day, no matter the weather, no matter the mood, we can always rely on playing in the mud. Getting dirty seems to be the favorite outdoor activity and shouldn’t it be?

For more information on WinSport’s Early Explorers program, visit: https://www.winsport.ca/lessonsprograms/earlychildhood.cfm

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