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.
Half term Home Link
That was a very busy and long half term but we’ve enjoyed getting to know all of our new children. We hope that you all enjoy a rest over half term and have some family fun. When we return to Nursery, we always love to hear about your adventures but sometimes, children find it difficult to remember! If you would like to send us a photograph or bring in a leaflet from some where you visit, it usually helps to jog children’s memories. It’s a good way to improve their speaking and listening skills too; they enjoy sharing their photos with friends.
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Whoosh! They were gone.
On Monday, we loved reading ‘Room on the Broom’ at story time. Some children are really familiar with the story and have been joining in with their favourite parts and words from the book. We could see lots of children using the story props and heard some saying “Whooosh” as the witch flew away on her broomstick and “Iggity, ziggity, zaggity, zoooooom!” whilst stirring the cauldron.
The Early Years Foundation Stage includes ‘reading’ in the specific area of literacy. Children working within the 22-36 months developmental band can usually join in with words and phrases that appear over and over again when listening to stories. Children working in the 30-50 months developmental band are able to listen to longer stories and talk about them more confidently. They may guess what might happen next in a story or suggest how it might end.
How can you help your child with reading at home?
- Enjoy sharing a book regularly. We like reading books at any time of the day, but we especially love bed time stories!
- Children like to help turn the pages – let them.
- Let them use toys to help them tell you stories that you’ve shared.
- When you read stories that your child knows really well, stop at different parts and let them tell you the missing word.
- Let them explore lots of books from the library or nursery with their friends and by themselves.
Here’s a sneaky peak at some of the other activities that we have enjoyed so far this week.
- Pumpkin counting and reading ‘5 Little Pumpkins’ in our maths area.
- In the sensory area, we’ve been exploring the inside of a pumpkin. Ask your child what it felt like.
- Mark making by painting patterns on large pumpkins outside.
- In the malleable area, we’ve been applying some of our ‘dough disco’ skills; we’re getting much better at rolling ball shapes with the playdough.
Wish List and Nursery fund
We have a ‘wish list‘ board in Nursery (near the signing in sheets on the red display board) where we will add post-it notes with items on that we are hoping to collect. These might range from free things that you have at home already (such as recycling materials and magazines) or could be small items that we would like to use to enhance our provision (such as pound shop items, baking ingredients or topical items like pumpkins or Christmas decorations). If you are able to help contribute or have an item at home, please remove the post it note from the wish list and bring in the item as soon as you can. We really appreciate all donations, however big or small!
If you wish to contribute, but would prefer to donate loose change instead, we have a money box next to the signing in sheet. These donations really help us out when it’s time to buy little extras to enable us to follow children’s interests each week. Last week, we bought some little owls and new owl books to go with the children’s current interest in owls.
Home Link – Is there Room on the Broom?
After the Halloween Disco on Friday, we’re sure that children will be talking about witches, wizards and pumpkins next week! We have created a new small world area in the Rainbow Room based on one of our favourite stories, ‘Room on the Broom’. For this week’s Home Link activity, please enjoy reading the story at home together. If you don’t have a copy, you could visit the library or watch a video clip of the story online.
Talk about the story together. What’s your favourite part?
Children were keen to learn about our feathery friends this week. We listened to many stories about owls and enjoyed re-telling ‘Owl Babies’ in our small world area. Some children were beginning to join in with the repeated refrains in the story, especially the phrase “I want my mummy!” We used this story to talk about missing our own family whilst learning at Nursery. Being able to separate from a carer and talking about family is part of the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum. It is included in the prime area Personal, Social, Emotional Development and is part of Understanding the World.
We’ve been creative with loose parts this week too; children have enjoyed creating owl faces both inside and outside. In the creative area, children really concentrated for extended periods of time carefully whilst carefully selecting the dried peas, lentils and pasta to create owls with eyes and beaks. This was a very fiddly activity and was a great way to help children practise using a pincer grip.
Outside, we collected autumn leaves and twigs and used the contents of our autumn bags to create larger pictures on the floor. Some children helped to make an owl with large sticks for wings and leaves for feathers and another child created Santa. If you look carefully, you will be able to see his eyes and a beard of leaves and conkers!
Following other interests this week, we moved some wild animals to our sensory area where they are now happily stomping in ‘mud’ (cornflour gloop). Children were intrigued by the texture and feel of the mud. It was cold and wet but could also be runny. It took some children a while to explore, dipping in a finger at first and then their whole hands!
- Friday (25.10.19) is a training day so school, including Nursery, will be closed.
- Please sign up for a Parent’s consultation appointment if you haven’t already.