Christmas has arrived in Nursery!
December has arrived and children came to Nursery on Monday morning full of excitement and with tales of decorating Christmas trees and visits to see Santa.
We’re sure you’ll have already noticed the Christmas themed enhancements in Nursery this week. Here are a few of the areas that we have adapted to promote learning though different areas of play.
In our Maths area, we have a selection of baubles, bells and pom poms. Children can use tweezers to pick up the objects and sort them onto the Christmas tree shapes. This is an open ended activity to promote counting and sorting. It also doubles up as a fiddly finger challenge too, helping to strengthen children’s hand muscles as they squeeze the tweezers. We have a similar activity in our water tray, but on a larger scale. Children are enjoying catching the floating baubles using larger tongs and both hands.
In our small world areas, children have been learning about the Nativity story and delivering presents in Santa’s sleigh. Children have even started to tell their own stories involving Santa’s sleigh getting stuck in the snow!
Many children have been talking about writing a letter to Santa. In our mark making area, we have been practising our scissor skills by cutting out toys that we would like. There are some very long lists! Some children wrote their name next to their chosen toy and others practised writing the first letter of their name.
In our new North Pole role play area, children, or should we say elves, were very busy wrapping presents ready to put in Santa’s sack. We’ve seen some great team work as children used the bricks to make a sleigh for Santa. We counted how many elves there were and worked out how many seats the sleigh would need to have.
Home Link – Christmas story
We love to listen to stories in Nursery, whether they are stories that we have heard lots of times or new ones.
Do you have a favourite Christmas story?
We’d love to hear it in Nursery. Please bring your favourite Christmas story book into Nursery and we’ll enjoy reading it at story time throughout the week. (Please remember to write your name in it.)
More rhyming fun!
Has your child been singing more rhymes this week? We hope so!
‘The Wheels on the Bus’ has been very popular and has provided lots of mathematical opportunities too. Children have been counting people on to the bus, taking them off again and working out how many spaces were left and how many more passengers could get on.
In our creative area, we’ve continued to explore printing and patterns that we can make. We used Duplo bricks to make a wall for Humpty Dumpty to sit on. We talked about the shapes that the bricks made when we printed with them. Is it a rectangle, square or lots of little circles?
In our maths area, we sang ‘Twinkle Twinkle’ and talked about the different stars. Children lined them up to count them and were also able to sort them by size (big, small), colour (gold, silver) and appearance (shiny, dull).
‘Incy Wincy Spider’ had a great time in the water tray. There was lots of problem solving going on as children worked out how to get the spiders to move down the guttering. They used different containers to re-create the rain to help ‘wash the spider out’.
Please send in your child’s costume by Friday 29 November. Remember to write your child’s name on all items and on the outside of the bag. Thank you for your support. We’re looking forward to seeing all of the children in their costumes!
World Nursery Rhyme Week
We’ve really enjoyed singing lots of Nursery Rhymes this week, so much so, that we’re going to continue with the theme next week too!
If you haven’t completed our Home Link activity yet, there’s still time. Please bring in a picture/prop/toy that reminds you of your favourite Nursery rhyme. Here are a few that we had from last week… a dish and a spoon (Hey Diddle Diddle), a rabbit (Sleeping Bunnies) and a monkey (5 Little Monkeys). What is your child’s favourite rhyme?
Some of our enhancements in Nursery this week were linked to popular rhymes, all of which can be found on the Nursery Rhyme booklet that we sent home at the beginning of the week.
In the water area, we sang ‘I’m a Little Teapot’ whilst investigating capacity and pouring, filling and emptying. If you look carefully, you can see we had teabags too. This was a good conversation starter. What happens to the colour of the water? What’s inside? Does it smell?
In our sensory area, children had great fun building a wall for Humpty Dumpty. Sadly, he didn’t survive his fall and we couldn’t put him back together again! At the end of the week, we had some very sticky hands as children explored the texture and properties of jelly! Jelly on a plate, jelly on a plate, wibble wobble, wibble wobble…
We also enjoyed singing lots of other rhymes including ‘12345 Once I caught a fish alive’ and ‘Jack and Jill’.
Thank you and welcome back!
As some of our older children will remember, Miss Morris left us a while ago to go on her maternity leave. Time has flown by, and it is nearly time for her to return. We’re looking forward to seeing her in Nursery again and she will become the Key Person for the new children that will join us in January. Welcome back, Miss Morris.
During her absence, we’ve been really lucky to have Miss McKechnie with us in Nursery; she’s been a great member of our team. We’re sad to say that this week will be Miss McKechnie’s last week with us in Nursery, but don’t worry, she’s not going too far! We’re pleased to say that she’s moving into KS1 and so we’ll be able to see her in school. We’d like to thank Miss McKechnie for all of her hard work. We know she’ll enjoy helping children to learn and have fun in ‘big school’.
Home Link – World Nursery Rhyme week
We’re joining in with the celebrations for World Nursery Rhyme Week (w/c 18.11.19).
What’s your child’s favourite nursery rhyme?
Please bring in an item linked to this rhyme and practise singing/saying it together.
For example, you could bring in a sheep toy for Baa Baa Black Sheep, make a spider for Incy Wincy Spider or paint a star for Twinkle Twinkle Little Star.
Rockets and magnets
Thank you to everybody for working on our Home Link activity for the week; we’ve seen lots of children trying to put on their own coats and some have also managed to fasten their zips too. Keep going! We’ll continue to work on this next week and you’ll find certificates in their folders. If your child has already mastered it, try something else that they need help with, for example putting on their own hat or gloves.
Our new ‘magnetism’ Discovery Zone has been very popular with children. They have been fascinated by the magnets and have spent extended periods of time investigating which objects would ‘stick’ to the magnets. We talked about the different objects and what type of material they were made from. With support, children began to make links in their experiences, noticing which materials were magnetic. We predicted and tested their ideas. Whilst exploring, children demonstrated lots of the ‘Characteristics of Effective Learning’ including finding out and exploring, being involved and concentrating and thinking critically.
Following on from Bonfire Night celebrations, some children have shown an interest in rockets. We’ve been re-telling the story of Baby Bear’s adventures to the moon in ‘Whatever Next‘ and building our own rockets outside. Children loved taking part in some space themed role play; they fastened their seat belts and put on space boots before blasting off to the moon and mars!
Home Link – Put your coat on…
Our outside area is open in all weathers and at the moment, there’s certainly no playing out without a coat. It’s just too cold and wet!
Over the next two weeks, we’d like you to help your child to learn to put on their own coat. For children that can already do this, please work on learning to zip it up independently. We’ll be looking out for children that can put their coat on by themselves and also fasten their zips up and we’ll give out certificates when they achieve it.
We’re always looking for ways to help children become more independent. Other self help skills that you could help your child to work on include putting on and fastening their own shoes (try to avoid laces!), blowing their nose and learning to wipe themselves after they’ve been to the toilet. It’s hard work being three!
Bang, pop, whizz!
Welcome back to Nursery. We hope that you all had a good half term. Thank you to everyone who emailed some photographs of your days out; we loved seeing your Halloween costumes, campfires and trips to the seaside.
This week, children were very excited about Bonfire Night. We talked about the different sounds that they had heard ranging from big bangs, to popping, crackling, whizzing and whoooshing! Outside, and in the mark making area, we drew spirals, lines and dots to make fireworks.
As we talked about safety on Bonfire Night, this inevitably lead to an interest in firefighters and fire engines. Children have enjoyed lots of firefighter role play; building fire engines in the construction area and putting out fires in the small world area.
When children take part in role play activities like this, we’re looking to develop several areas from our Early Years curriculum, including ‘Communication and Language’ (which includes speaking and listening skills) and elements from the ‘Personal, Social and Emotional Development’ strand. Here are just a few things that we look for and develop during play:
- Children’s use of language – we may introduce new vocabulary related to the topic and model using it in longer sentences.
- Listening skills – we encourage children to listen and respond to their peers and to take into account their ideas.
- Making relationships – some children need encouragement to join in with group role play and others may require support to take turns and share resources.
There are lots of benefits of role play, some are outlined in this article.
On Tuesday, we talked about Bonfire Night traditions, including looking at some toffee apples. Children especially enjoyed making their own chocolate apples; we talked about how the chocolate melted and then became hard as it cooled. We hope they enjoyed eating their apples whilst watching the fireworks!
Despite the wet weather, we still took part in lots of outside activities, including strengthening our arm and shoulder muscles by sweeping, raking and hammering.