Activity 4: Creating journey sticks

Using directional language and mapping a journey using found objects.

Learning goal

  • To describe a journey using found objects as prompts.

EYFS outcomes

Development matters

Understanding the world

  • Draw information from a simple map.
  • Explore the natural world around them.
  • Describe what they see, hear and feel whilst outside.

Characteristics of effective learning

  • Playing and exploring.
  • Active learning.
  • Creating and thinking critically.

See Development Matters (non-statutory curriculum guidance).

Understanding the world

ELG: People, Culture and Communities

  • Describe their immediate environment using knowledge from observation, discussion, stories, non-fiction texts and maps
  • Explore the natural world around them, making observations and drawing pictures of animals and plants.    

See Statutory framework for the early years foundation stage, 2021.

Before the lesson

Teacher guidance


Support and challenge

Adults can use the opportunity to discuss and/or support with:

  • Fixing objects or items to their stick if needed.
  • Vocabulary including geographical features and positional/directional language.
  • Presenting their sticks to the rest of the group, verbally mapping out their route as they explain the journey they took to gather each item.
  • Providing paper and drawing materials for the children who would like to record their route by making a simple linear map.


  • direction

  • find

  • identify

  • journey

  • map

  • object

  • path

  • route

  • feature names (e.g. bench, building, field, gate, house, playground, pond, road, steps, tree, etc.)

  • directional language (e.g. across, around, behind, beneath, next to, under, etc.)

Curriculum opportunities

Created by:
Sophie Pickles (EYFS),  
Geography specialist
Sophie is an expert Early Years consultant. She has spent many years both teaching in Reception and leading, in her role of Head of Early Years and senior manager at an outstanding-rated, child-led setting. Sophie now works with many national educational…
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