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I had the privilege of watching a group of 3-year-old boys explore a range of ice bricks today, under the highly experienced guidance of our Early Years Teacher. It was truly wonderful to see their faces upon opening tubs to reveal ice with treasures hidden inside. As well as a huge amount of early scientific inquiry emerging from these young minds as to how they would release the bricks from the containers and how they could speed up or slow down the melting process, there was also a very real sense of awe and wonder at their discoveries. It was a wonderful moment when I saw vocabularies widen, ‘eureka’ moments pop into heads (genuine new thinking that is far from original in the wider world, but totally new for their little world), relationship skills develop as they negotiated roles and shared equipment and thinking and understanding challenged through skilful questioning as they made sense of what they were exploring. Inevitably, there was a rather large puddle underneath the water tray after my 30-minute observation, but the exclamation of one young chap who delighted in the fact he had, “opened a bubble” today more than makes up for the mopping that ensued!

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