Finn is our king of messy play, so I decided to give him his ladybird life cycle figurines and a bucket of red slime to rescue them from.


  • Zimpli Kids red slime
  • Animal Lore ladybird life cycle figurines
  • Blindfold


After him having drawn and explained the ladybird life cycle, I gave Finn a blindfold and asked him to identify the different parts of the life cycle. First, Ioan handed him the egg and the ladybird.

Next, he gave him the pupa and larva.

After unsuccessfully trying to find and rescue the figures whilst wearing the blindfold, Finn took the blindfold off. It was tricky enough to catch them with sight.

Finn fished in the slime and completed the two ladybird life cycles. One was male and one was female, so they wanted to investigate whether the females looked different, giving them the name ladybird.

Once he’d completed his two life cycles and was satisfied that they were exactly the same for a female and male ladybird, Finn decided to get in the bucket himself. Ioan watched in fascination, finding it hard to see why Finn was enjoying himself.

He enjoyed the sensation of the slime running off his arms, commenting that it made him have wings like a ladybird.

He spent an hour and a half in his slime bucket, happily playing with the ladybirds.

When Cian woke from his nap, he joined in with a bucket that Finn had prepared for him. To go with the ladybird theme, it was full of bubble bath and red mega blocks and balls.

This pair were full of kisses for each other.

DfES Early Learning Goals (2017)

ELG 14 – The world:

Children know about similarities and differences in relation to places, objects, materials and living things. They talk about the features of their own immediate environment and how environments might vary from one another. They make observations of animals and plants and explain why some things occur, and talk about changes.

Expressive arts and design

ELG 17 – Being imaginative:

Children use what they have learnt about media and materials in original ways, thinking about uses and purposes. They represent their own ideas, thoughts and feelings through design and technology, art, music, dance, role-play and stories.