Today I took three children to Brighton. It is one of my best loved trips and has a rhythm all of its own.
We parked at the Marina and the children read the signs stating we had 3 hours in the car park. We worked out we needed to get back to the car by 4pm, plenty of time for skimming stones and eating chips!
We dashed up from the car park to the beach and straight onto the stones. Here the children metamorphosed into treasure hunters, finding shark eggs, crab claws, sea glass, stones containing crystals and stone holes. We made up stories about who may live in the shells and counted in twos as we threw stones into the sea.
We walked along the sea line spotting baby and adult seagulls, pointing out the difference and researching when an baby seagull becomes an adult (4 years). We then found some chalk and headed back to the path where the children played a game of marking paving slabs and creating an obstacle course, before using the chalk to draw some pictures and captions.
At the park the children ran to climb and balance and swing. These three children are springy monkeys who do not follow a set path, they were soon creating their own paths all over the apparatus which other children began to follow. Once climbing was exhausted they became pirates and explorers with special signals and languages until hunger developed and chips were called for.
Whilst waiting for chips the children became engrossed in the tomato ketchup packets, reading the ingredients and nutritional values. We researched some of these and concluded the ketchup on offer was just red sugar.
Whilst chips were devoured we chatted about all the other times we had all been to the beach and the children told me about their most recent holiday and future adventures they would like to have. Silly photos were taken and pleas to return to the park then met.
On the way home the children found the chalk obstacle course they had made earlier and completed it in reverse which led us right up to the graffiti area. We stopped and looked at the different styles for a while, speaking about the difference between graffiti and vandalism. We all chose a graffiti picture we liked best and explained why it was our favourite.
It was then to the car for our 4pm deadline, pockets and bags full of our treasures, music on and silly songs sung until home.