Signs of spring
It was very foggy on the way to Nursery this morning, but the children still managed to spot some signs of spring in the Nursery garden.
They talked about the flowers that they had seen at the park and at their grandparent’s houses.
“What are those white ones there? My grandma has those,” one child commented.
“Those ones are yellow. They’re daffodils,” another child spotted some small daffodils growing in the grass.
“Don’t break it or the spider will have to make another one,” someone noticed a spider web covered in tiny water droplets.
Welcome back to Nursery
We hope that you had a fun half term break. We’re looking forward to hearing about all of your adventures and finding out about what our children’s new interests are.
Before the holidays, many children were talking about their birthdays and making cakes in the playdough area. To begin this week, we have added some birthday themed activities to our Nursery provision. We will write invitations, make birthday cards, have tea parties in the home corner and count candles on the cakes we create.
Happy Half Term!
We hope that you’ve all had a good rest over half term and have enjoyed some fun family outings. Please remember to send us one or two photographs of your activities or bring a leaflet into Nursery. We’ll be looking at them in the first week back; they are a brilliant way to encourage communication and listening.
We hope that your child has already told you all about their learning this week. They’ve been talking about keeping safe; hopefully they will have shared lots of safety tips with you and told you all about the special visitors that came to Nursery.
At the beginning of the week, children helped to carry out risk assessments for Nursery’s indoor and outdoor area. They spotted things that might cause them to trip or slip and talked about where was/wasn’t safe to play when it’s icy or wet outside.
There’s a great game on the Nationwide’s website where children can explore a virtual home and spot the dangers. (Link to follow shortly.) Children were very good at this! Well done, Nursery.
On Wednesday, we were joined by Lollypop Lady Sue. Lots of children recognised Sue and knew that she helped us to cross the road safely. We looked at Sue’s special high visibility jacket and her Lollypop sign. Some children recognised the ‘STOP’ letters and we sounded them out to read the word. Sue had lots of safety tips for us for how to travel to school safely. She reminded children to always hold their adult’s hand when they are walking on the path and crossing the road. We also talked about travelling in cars and reminding parents and carers to park safely, away from the school’s zig zag lines and driving slowly. We watched a video about road safety which gave us the message to “Stop, look, listen and think” before we cross the road.
Another highlight of the week had to be a visit from the Fire Brigade. Children were really excited and enjoyed hearing the loud siren and feeling how powerful the water hose is! To follow on from their interest in fire fighters, we have created an Emergency services role play area with the children’s ideas. They suggested lots of things that they would need and enjoyed answering 999 calls.
Over the last few weeks, we have introduced children to some letter sounds. So far, we have learnt Ss Aa Tt and we’ll learn Pp this week.
We talk to children about the letter names and the sounds that they make. We always use the pure sound, such as ‘sssssss’ rather than ‘suh’ and ‘mmmmmm’ not ‘muh’. If you’re unsure, watch this link of our F2 teachers producing the pure sounds.
We use the Jolly Phonics songs and actions to help us learn each sound. Here’s a video of the songs for the first set of sounds that we will learn. We continue to focus on the sound of the letters at the start of words and are playing lots of games including eye spy. We use objects that begin with the letters that we have learnt so far, like in this video game. You could play your own game using objects that you find at home.
Frost, ice and snow
The cold weather didn’t stop us from venturing outside to learn last week! With our hats and gloves on, and our coats zipped right to the top, we enjoyed exploring the garden and found lots of frost, ice and sparkling spider webs.
One of the Prime areas of learning in the Early Years Foundation Stage is Physical Development and part of this relates to children’s independence skills and their ability to dress themselves. Please take advantage of wrapping up in the cold weather and encourage your child to put on their own shoes and coat. If they can do this already, can they fasten the zip on their coat or put on their own gloves? These are all great skills to learn – you might just need to get ready 5 minutes earlier to give children some extra time.
Knobbly knees, bird watching and ice
Continuing with the Gruffalo theme provided lots of opportunities to extend learning this week. There were some fantastic Gruffalo creations in the playdough area; children demonstrated great perseverance and used all the details from the story to make Gruffalo cakes with purple prickles, orange eyes and terrible teeth.
It was quite chilly outside and children spotted lots of signs of winter. We talked about the frost each morning and children were very excited to find ice in different places. After painting on the ice, children noticed that when they returned to the activity later, it had gone!
As part of the RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch, children helped to make some birdfeeders to hang in the Nursery garden. We look forward to bird watching next week.
EasyPeasy! We are going live!
You should have received a letter and information booklet introducing you to the new and FREE educational app called ‘EasyPeasy’.
‘EasyPeasy’ is going live this Saturday 26th January. If you have not opted out you will receive a text message inviting you to access the many educational game ideas that you can do at home.
Each week, you will receive a text message with a new game that you can play in any location with everyday items that you’ll already have at home. EasyPeasy is designed to support learning through play!
This week the activity will be ‘lunch time’. Let us know how you get on by commenting on the game. Look out for our comment with suggestions of how to adapt the game!
There’s no such thing as a Gruffal…
Oh, what fun we’ve had reading the Gruffalo this week! Children obviously love this story; it has provided a great stimulus for conversation and is helping children to develop their early reading skills. In the large construction area, one child decided to build a ‘Gruffalo floor’ and we used this to create a puppet theatre. Children enjoyed working together to use puppets to create a show for their friends.
If you want to sing a long to a Gruffalo song that we enjoyed listening to in Nursery, here’s a link to a video you can watch at home. Julia Donaldson’s website is also full of lots of ideas and games to play too. If you have a go at making Gruffalo crumble, send us a picture and let us know what it tasted like!
The reading area has also been popular this week; we’ve added a collection of other stories written by Julia Donaldson. We’ve noticed lots of excellent early reading skills being developed.
In the Early Years Foundation Stage, when working in the 30-50 months developmental band for reading, children should begin to:
- Join in with stories and guess what might happen next.
- Listen to longer stories and talk about the main events and characters.
- Know that stories have beginnings and endings.
- Look at books independently (holding them the correct way up and turning the pages carefully).
- Talk about the illustrations and begin to understand that print is read from left to right and conveys meaning.
We also enjoyed consolidating our learning about basic 2D shapes (circle, square, rectangle and triangle) by going on a shape hunt around school. We found lots of shapes including a triangle on a sign for the swimming pool and a circle on the giant playground clock.
We played a game on the interactive whiteboard to feed the correct shape to each monster.
Toys, ice and shapes.
Children were keen to return to Nursery after the Christmas holidays; some were so excited they came running through the door! We loved hearing about your adventures and seeing lots of the photos that you kindly sent in.
This week, we read ‘Kipper’s Toy Box’ and talked about the different toys that we got for Christmas. The new Toy Shop role play area was popular and children especially enjoyed navigating the remote controlled cars around a track. It was quite tricky to use the controls to make the cars turn and go straight through the tunnel but the children helped each other and kept trying until they got the cars to the finish line.
Outside, on one of the chillier mornings, we found some ice. Children were really excited and keen to touch it and find out how it got there.
In group times, we learnt about simple 2D shapes. Some children continued their learning outside independently; they spotted some shapes in our outdoor area. Towards the end of the week, we began to make our own shapes, a bit like the ones that we watched on the Mr Maker shape song (CBeebies). We’ll continue learning about shapes next week. Please complete the Home Link shape activity and return it to Nursery.