Nursery News 12th February 2024

NURSERY NEWS

12th February 2024 – Edition 324

Find out About

A. Some new Forest Furniture!

B. Catkins Class Offers for 3+ Nursery in September 2024 for children with dates of birth from 01/04/21 to 31/08/21

C February Half Term Holiday dates

D. What are the children are learning about this week?

 

A: Some new Forest Furniture!

Those of you that were outside on Friday at 9am will probably remember that one of our neighbours was having a very large tree removed by a team of tree surgeons. The children were really fascinated. A big group of pupils gathered at our front fence to watch, as soon as they were allowed to go outside after register time.

It was an amazing learning opportunity. Staff were discussing how the men were able to secure themselves to the tree safely and then use a chain saw to take the tree down piece by piece.

Mrs Brinkley is our Level 3 trained Forest School Practitioner. She said as part of her training she was told ‘If you ever see a big tree being taken down go and ask for some logs’…. so Mrs Brinkley did. The team asked how she wanted the trunk cut up. She explained that she would like the trunk cut in to generous slices, big enough for the children to sit on as seats.

The gentlemen set to work….

They arrived with log seats in their wheel barrows and placed them in the garden in a circle. The children were enthralled. The gentlemen were wearing their safety equipment and the children were very impressed. A number of pupils now wish to become tree surgeons and spent the rest of Friday trying to chop down our conifers with our play tools!

A big group of children sat down and filled every log. Some are wide enough for three small people to sit on together. The group started to chant ‘Campfire, Campfire’. So Mrs Brinkley went to find her camp cooking pot that looks like a cauldron and hangs on a tripod.

It was an amazing ‘in the moment’ opportunity, and we now have a marvellous set of forest seats. Sustainable recycling in action!

Thank you to Mrs Brinkley and Miss Skai for supporting this experience for the children.

 

B. Catkins Class Offers for 3+ Nursery in September 2024

for children with dates of birth from 01/04/21 to 31/08/21

We are now beginning our enrolment process for the 3+ Nursery for Summer born children who attend Catkins Class. Mrs Davies has written an offer letter for the 15 families who attend Catkins Class in this age bracket. Office staff will be handing out these letters to you this week. Please ensure you collect it. You are of course welcome to come in to school to pick up your offer letter.

 

We would ask that all completed Option Choice forms are returned to us by Friday 1st March 2024, at the very latest.  (Please note the school is completely closed during the February Half Term Holiday)

We assume that all of these families would like a place in Big Nursery. Please let us know as soon as possible if you have other plans.

We will offer spaces to our waitlist children with dates of birth from 01/04/21 to 31/08/21 as soon as all the Catkins Parents have made their choice of attendance pattern and returned their Options Form.

 

C.  February Half Term Holiday dates

We are approaching our February Half Term Holiday. The school will be closed from Monday 19th February 2024 to Friday 23rd February 2024.

 

D. What are the children are learning about this week?

The theme this week in Nursery is Chicken Licken

In Catkins, the children will be learning the story of Chicken Licken. They will learn all of the names of the different characters as they listen to this traditional tale. Staff will talk to the children about the animals in the book and they will have the opportunity to play with some small world animals that represent the characters.

In the Link, the children will be offered an invitation to paint. They will have a picture of Chicken Licken along with paint and resources to use. The children will have the choice of fine paint brushes, cotton buds and chicken footprints to stamp with. Staff will talk to the children about how they can make marks using different resources and focus on enhancing their fine motor skills.

Outside, the children will be wearing animal ponchos and moving around the garden in different ways. They will have access to chalks and use them to make marks around the garden. Staff will model how to hold chalks effectively and support those that need it.

In Room 3, the children will have writing tables set up for them. They have enjoyed making marks recently, so staff will provide lots of paper and mark making tools. Staff will support children with holding their pencils effectively and they will be encouraged to write letters and post them through the letterboxes in the role play area.

In Room 2, the children will focus on fine motor skills and will be using cotton buds to paint characters from the story Chicken Licken. Children will be encouraged to think about the colours that they want to use for their painting and shown how to hold their cotton buds for the purpose of making marks intentionally.

In Room 1, staff will be playing games with the children to encourage them to focus on set activities. They will play matching pairs games, to encourage the children how to notice similarities and as they play, staff will verbalise what is happening in the game to ensure that there is a firm understanding of what to do. Children will also play a matching number game, which encourages them to match, find and name all of the numbers on their board. Children will be encouraged to help each other as they play and wait patiently for their turn.

In the garden, the children will be fine tuning their physical skills as they complete obstacle courses. The children will need to move across apparatus in a safe and sensible manner. They can decide how is best to do this, but staff will support them if they are unsure. Children will need to move in a variety of ways to complete their course and can cheer each other on as they work.

 

 

NURSERY NEWS

5th February 2024 – Edition 323

Find out About

A.Parent Consultations. A reminder….

B.Could you help us with some tissues or some fruit? A big Thank You.

C. An Evening Event, For Big Nursery Children: Bedtime Stories Thursday 29th February 2024 at 5pm

D. What are the children are learning about this week?

 

A: Parent Consultations. A reminder….

Big Nursery Consultations will be taking place during this week, week beginning 5th February 2024. These consultations will be on the telephone, will last 5 minutes and be at the following times:

Mrs Patterson Monday 5th February between 3:15pm and 4:30pm

Miss Skai  Tuesday 6th February between 3:15pm and 4:20pm

Miss Howe Thursday 8th February between 3:15pm and 4:20pm

Mrs Cashmore Friday 9th February between 3:15pm and 4:30pm

 

B. Could you help us with some tissues or some fruit?

Thank you to all the parents that have responded. We are very grateful.

 

C. An Evening Event, For Big Nursery Children: Bedtime Stories Thursday 29th February 2024 at 5pm

All Big Nursery children are invited to bring a parent along for a bedtime story at Willow Nursery School. Children and parents will join your child’s keyworker for a bedtime story. Children can come in their pyjamas and bring a teddy bear or favourite cuddly toy with them. Older and younger brothers and sisters are welcome, but please remember the stories will be aimed at 3 and 4 year olds. Parents will be asked to monitor the behaviour of brothers and sisters, and will be expected to take noisy or wriggly children out of the story circle so as not to upset the quiet atmosphere created. We expect stories to last approximately 30 minutes (perhaps less for the youngest children) and we will then have warm ‘Hot Chocolate’ and cookies together.

 

D. What are the children are learning about this week?

The theme this week is The Three Little Pigs

In Catkins Class, the children will be learning about how the pigs built a strong house. The children will have access to some oversized soft building bricks, which they will use to build houses, walls and enclosures. The staff will talk with the children about all of the houses that the Three Pigs made and try to blow down their houses made from bricks like ‘The Big Bad Wolf’ did in the story.

In the Link, the children will focus on developing play around the Three Little Pigs story. They will use props such as shredded paper, lollipop sticks and Lego, along with characters from the story and house templates to expand their play. Children will be familiar with the story of The Three Little Pigs and will use their knowledge of the story to retell the tale.

Outside, the children will look for characters from the story. They will try to remember all of the characters and their names in the book. Staff will hide laminated pictures around the garden and encourage children to show where they were hidden using language and gestures.

In Room 3, staff will discuss the materials used by the three little pigs to build their houses. They will provide materials for the children to create their own collages to represent houses of straw, sticks and bricks. Children will talk about using glue to attach their materials to paper and relate what they are making back to the characters from the book.

In Room 2, there will be an invitation to play at the playdough table. The children will be able to explore the resources available and take their play in different directions. Staff will follow the children’s lead and support those that need it. New ideas will flow naturally as the children play.

In Room 1, the children will focus on building. They have really enjoyed using the Lego to create different designs and this will be encouraged with an even bigger range of building resources. The children will also work on number recognition and amounts as they play. There will be some laminates available that have quantities of objects for the children to count and match. As the children count or subitise* the objects, they will be encouraged to add the matching number of blocks to their card. *Subitise means: the ability to look at a small number of objects and instantly recognise how many objects there are without needing to count.

Outside, the children will be role playing as the Three Little Pigs. They will be making and playing in the houses built in the story. Children can choose to be a pig or a wolf and act out their roles accordingly. They will be prompted to say the repeated refrains that their chosen character uses during the story. Children can explore all characters and will be encouraged to swap roles often.

 

 

 

NURSERY NEWS

29th January 2024 – Edition 322

Find out About

A.Parent Consultations.

B.Could you help us with some tissues or some fruit?

C. Funding for 2 year olds- Working Families -15 hour offer.

D. What are the children are learning about this week?

 

A: Parent Consultations.

We aim to hold Parent Consultations every term. Big Nursery Consultations will be taking place during the week beginning 5th February 2024. Parent Consultations are not compulsory, but if you would like an appointment please arrange this with your child’s keyworker when they are outside before sessions begin. These consultations will be on the telephone, will last 5 minutes and be at the following times:

Mrs Patterson Monday 5th February between 3:15pm and 4:30pm

Miss Skai  Tuesday 6th February between 3:15pm and 4:20pm

Miss Howe Thursday 8th February between 3:15pm and 4:20pm

Mrs Cashmore Friday 9th February between 3:15pm and 4:30pm

 

A reminder of the dates and times of Little Nursery Consultations this week:

Mrs Cashmore Monday 29th January between 3:15pm and 3:55pm

Miss Gaffney Tuesday 30th January between 3:15pm and 3:55pm

Mrs Brinkley Tuesday 30th January between 4:10pm and 4:35pm

Mrs McGrath Wednesday 31st January between 9:30am and 10:25am*

Mrs Watson Thursday 1st February between 9:30am and 10:25am*

*Please note that on Wednesday and Thursday morning the phone line will be busy with Parent consultations. If you cannot get through on the telephone, and you need to get a message to us urgently, please email the school office: office@willownursery.co.uk We will check the inbox regularly for any emails.

 

B.Could you help us with some tissues or some fruit?

We are asking if parents would consider donating a box of tissues for the children to use, as we only have two boxes left in the school! We are firmly back into runny nose season!

I asked parents on the 27th November for donations of fruit to use at snacktime. Parents were overwhelmingly generous. We had so many apples, we had to refrigerate them over the Christmas break! The fruit has kept us going for so many weeks! Our store of fruit has now finally run out. So, could I please ask all families to consider donating a small bag of apples, bananas or satsumas for all the children to share.

 

C.  Funding for 2 year olds- Working Families -15 hour offer.

On Friday 12th January we sent out an information email to all parents in the two year old ‘Catkins Class’. Children in this class are the ones who may be eligible for up to 15 hours of free funded education from April 2024.

We asked  all parents in the two year old class to help us by finding out if their child is eligible for this funding or not.

We asked that parents return a completed paper copy of a form by today-Monday 29th January.

Most parents have returned their forms. The office staff will be in touch by email or telephone in the coming few days if you have not yet returned your form to enquire about your family’ status:

  • Eligible for this funding
  • Not eligible for this funding.
  • Choosing not to check for eligibility.

 

 

We are aware that some parents who are already registered for Tax Free Childcare have been having difficulty accessing a code that will entitle them to the new Funding for  2 year olds- working families- 15 hours offer. We have recently had additional information from the Department for Education Entitlements Team:

If you already have a Tax-Free Childcare account for your 2-year-old you will be given your free childcare code when you next reconfirm eligibility for that scheme.

The eligibility criteria for Tax-Free Childcare and the new free hours are the same.

 

D. What are the children are learning about this week?

The focus this week is The Three Billy Goats Gruff.

In Catkins, the children will focus on maths and sorting items by size. Staff will use different resources to show the children the difference between big, medium and small sizes. There will be a range of size puzzles for the children to complete, which will reinforce their learning.

In the Link, the children will be learning about the weather, they will learn about different weather they might see in Winter. Their work will be displayed on the walls and will be used as a discussion point for the children. The children will also use pva glue and paper to create troll pictures, relating to the story The Three Billy Goats Gruff.

Outside, the children will be acting out the story of The Three Billy Goats Gruff. There will be a scene set up with grass, water and a wooden bridge for the children to trip trap across the just like the goats in the story. There will also be some figures and bricks for the children to set up their own small scale version of the story scenes.

In Room 3, the staff will follow the children’s interests with role play. They will have an area set up for a flower shop and a hospital. The children will be provided with supporting resources to encourage their play and staff will follow their lead. Adults will model lots of language for the children, extending their play with open ended questions.

In Room 2, the children will be making trolls using playdough and monster body parts. They will be encouraged to think about what a troll looks like and then to recreate one using their playdough. Children will be encouraged to act out parts of the story as they play.

They will also be focusing on their fine motor skills as they paint characters from The Three Billy Goats Gruff. The children will be supported in writing their own names and holding the pencil and paintbrushes effectively.

In Room 1, the children will be listening to and retelling the story of The Three Billy Goats Gruff. They will use finger puppets to act out the story as they play. The children will be encouraged to share the puppets and remember to be patient. Children will be urged to retell the story using other resources too, such as Lego and wooden blocks.

Outside, the staff will show the children that they can act out the story they have learnt, using the climbing frame and the slide. They will play the parts of the goats moving over the bridge and of the troll, trying to stop the goats. Children will be encouraged to use repeated refrains that they heard in the story, as they play.

 

 

NURSERY NEWS
22nd January 2024 – Edition 321
Find out About
A. Parent Consultations.
B. What are the children are learning about this week?
C Willow Lending Library.

A: Parent Consultations.
We aim to hold Parent Consultations every term. Little Nursery Consultations will be taking place during the week beginning 29th January 2024. Parent Consultations are not compulsory, but if you would like an appointment please arrange this with your child’s keyworker when they are outside before sessions begin. These consultations will be on the telephone, will last 5 minutes and be at the following times:

Mrs Cashmore Monday 29th January between 3:15pm and 3:55pm
Miss Gaffney Tuesday 30th January between 3:15pm and 3:55pm
Mrs Brinkley Tuesday 30th January between 4:10pm and 4:35pm
Mrs McGrath Wednesday 31st January between 9:30am and 10:25am
Mrs Watson Thursday 1st February between 9:30am and 10:25am

Details of Big Nursery Consultations will be in next weeks’ newsletter.

B. What are the children are learning about this week?
The focus this week is nursery rhymes.
In Catkins, the children will be focusing on literacy. They will explore lots of books with the adults and practice turning the pages and looking at the pictures in the books. Staff will show the children how to use the books gently and encourage them to put their books back on the shelf when they are finished reading.
Outside, the children will be building on their physical skills by completing an obstacle course. They will climb, jump, balance and run while taking part and adults will support as necessary. There will also be some magnetic fish in the sand pit for the children to find. Each fish will have a number of spots on them and children will be supported with counting the spots.
In the Link, the children will learn the nursery rhymes Five Little Speckled Frogs and Five Little Ducks Went Swimming One Day. They will have access to props for these songs in the water tray and staff will sing along and act out the songs with the children.
In Room 3, the children will use the magnetic boards to choose their favourite nursery rhymes. They will have a range of pictures with lyrics to choose from and will be encouraged to take it in turns to choose and sing.
In Room 2, the children will be building up their scissor skills as they use them to cut playdough. There will be a variety of tools such as rolling pins, scissors and playdough cutters for the children to use. This will strengthen the children’s muscles in their fingers and provide some much needed scissor practice.
In Room 1, the children will have the opportunity to explore construction as they use Lego blocks and plates to build. The children can really be creative as they build, there are no limits to what they can design and staff will encourage the children to be patient and look after each other’s work.
Outside, the children will explore the nursery rhymes Humpty Dumpty and Five Little Monkeys Jumping On The Bed. They can learn these songs and practice singing them using playground equipment as props. Hidden around the garden will also be some nursery rhymes for the children to find. Each time they find a new song they can show staff and they can sing together.

C. Willow Lending Library.
We have had a number of new families joining us this term, so we just wanted to remind parents that we operate a lending library of children’s books.

Willow Lending Library
Welcome to Willow outdoor lending library. We are open every day from 8.15-8.45am and from 3.00pm-3.30pm.
Please choose 1-2 books with your child and write the names of the books under your child’s name in their colour group folder before taking them home to read together.
You can change the books as frequently as you wish.
Please look after our books.

*Please ensure that you have left the library area at 8.45am prompt before children start to enter the school gates in the morning.

THANKYOU

Top Tips for Reading with your child

  • Let your child choose what they would like to read.
  • Make sure there are no distractions.
  • Sit close together. Encourage your child to hold the book and turn the pages too.
  • Look at the pictures. Talk about what can be seen on the page.
  •  Ask questions and talk about the book. Give your child time to talk.
  •  Have fun – there is no right or wrong way to share a story.
  • Free tips and advice in more than 20 languages on ‘sharing books with young children’ can be found at:
    https://www.booktrust.org.uk/books-and-reading/tips-and-advice/reading-with-your-child3-4years/#!?q=&sortOption=AtoZ&pageNo=1
NURSERY NEWS 15th January 2024 – Edition 320
Find out About
A. Funding for 2 year olds- Working Families -15 hour offer.
B. Request for Box Modelling Materials.
C What the children are learning about this week?
A. Funding for 2 year olds- Working Families -15 hour offer.
On Friday 12th January we sent out an information email to all parents in the two year old ‘Catkins Class’. Children in this class are the ones who may be eligible for up to 15 hours of free funded education from April 2024. For our forward planning we need to know which children will be eligible for this funding. We are asking that all parents in the two year old class help us by finding out if their child is eligible for this funding or not. We will hand all parents of two year olds a letter detailing how to apply for their code. We will also include a paper copy of a form to be completed and returned to school by Monday 29th January.
Please return the form even if you are not eligible.
B: Request for Box Modelling Materials.
We are running very short of recycled materials for our box modelling area. We would be very grateful for recycled materials that the children can use to create models. Children love boxes, but not too big please. The biggest boxes we can store are cereal boxes. Tiny boxes are useful, or unusual shapes. Plastic bottle tops make good buttons and wheels. Yogurt pots, butter tubs and other plastic containers are interesting to glue together, but please ensure they are clean. Toilet roll tubes become superhero cuffs, covered in foil. Egg boxes are great places to glue coloured tissue.
C. What the children are learning about this week?
In Catkins and Room 3, the children will have a simple role play area set up representing Goldilocks and the Three Bears. We have been learning about Goldilocks during group time and the children can act out some of the character’s antics. Lots of language from the story will be modelled for the children to copy and learn.
The children will be making and tasting porridge in the link. They will be encouraged to use some of the language they have heard during their story such as ‘too hot’ and ‘just right’. Children will be encouraged to stir the milk and porridge together before it is cooked and may even need to wait for it to cool, just like the three bears.
Outside, the children will be working on ball skills such as kicking and rolling big and little balls. The staff will play with the children, showing them how to aim and kick a football. Lots of praise will be given as children try their best and join in with others.
In Room 1, the children will be sequencing the story of Goldilocks and the Three Bears. They will cut out and stick pictures in order to retell the story as they have learnt it. There will be lots of pattern work for the children to explore, they will be encouraged to look around the area and point out different patterns that they notice.
In Room 2, the children will be painting and making collages of the characters from the Goldilocks story. They will look at the details of the character that they are recreating and the colours that they must use to represent them accurately. While they work, children can talk to the staff about why they chose the character they are recreating.
Outside, the children will have a larger scale role play set up. There will be a table with three bowls and spoons, three chairs and three beds. All children will be encouraged to retell the story in their own way and to consider the different sizes of the props that they have been provided with. Children will be encouraged to reset the area when they have finished playing, so that other children can play after.

NURSERY NEWS

8th January 2024 – Edition 319- First Newsletter of 2024

Find out About

A. Welcome back after the Christmas Break.

B. Final reminder-Big Nursery-Applying for Primary School.

C. School Term Dates

D. Labelling belongings

E. What the children are learning about this week?

 

A. Welcome back after the Christmas Break.

We hope everyone enjoyed their Christmas Break. We are welcoming 5 new children from our wait list to join Green Group in Little Nursery. Our pupil numbers grow each term as the academic year progresses, so please try to arrive on time, so we can take everyone safely inside in an organised way as swiftly as possible.

 

So, as a reminder, Little Nursery Should arrive for 8:45 and Big Nursery should arrive for 8:50. If you arrive late, please be patient, we will admit all those children who arrive on time first, and then come back to admit latecomers. We do understand that parents cannot be in two places at once if you have to drop off older brothers and sisters at other schools.

 

B. Final reminder-Big Nursery-Applying for Primary School.

Who needs to apply?

Children born between 1 September 2019 and 31 August 2020 are due to start school in September 2024.

You need to apply before 15 January 2024.

How to apply

  • if Central Bedfordshire is your council, you need to apply through them.
  • if Central Bedfordshire is not your council, you’ll need to apply through your home Local Authority.

You will need to look on your Local Authority Council’s website for further information on how to apply.

 

 

C: School Term Dates

The Local Authority, Central Bedfordshire, publishes details of term dates and school holidays on their website: Centralbedfordshire.gov.uk

Type: ‘School term and holiday dates in Central Bedfordshire’ into your search engine to find the correct page.

Be aware that sometimes the Local Authority adjusts school holiday dates. I would recommend you check the holiday dates on their website before booking a holiday.

For this term:

Half term is from Monday 19th February 2024 to Friday 23rd  February 2024, when Willow Nursery School will be closed.

The last day of the Spring term will be Thursday 28th March 2024. School will reopen after the Spring Break on Monday 15th April 2024.

 

D: Labelling belongings

Label all lunchboxes clearly with your child’s name, on the top, so staff can see the name when the box is on the trolley. Label all drinks bottles and containers.

Label all coats and shoes, and any other items that children can take off-cardigans/jumpers/ fleeces. It is much easier to return items to owners when things are labelled.

 

E. What the children are learning about this week?

For this term we will begin to look at ‘Traditional Stories and Rhymes’ as our loose topic. We call it our loose topic, because it gives all the staff a focus together, so the work in different classrooms in the school compliments each other. We also have to ensure that we follow the children’s interests, so staff allow time in their day to support children to pursue their current interests, using individual learning opportunities to extend the children’s skills and knowledge in a sensitive way. Children learn best when they are involved in their learning.  Children are very motivated when they have chosen or developed their own activity. We have to achieve a balance of adult led and child initiated activities.

This week we will be learning about the story of the Gingerbread Man across the whole school.

There are some pretend gingerbread men on a baking tray in the home corner in Little Nursery, so the children can see a visual of what a Gingerbread man is, and know that it is a kind of biscuit that is baked in the oven. Even the youngest children will know that biscuits do not usually jump up out of the oven and run away!

Miss Skai has developed a story telling table in Room 2 with the characters from the story, and the children are enjoying retelling the story.

There is gingerbread coloured playdough in Room two with some gingerbread man shaped mats for the children to try and create their own ‘Gingerbread Men’.

Try retelling the story with your child at home. If you do not have the story, try looking online. There are lots of animated stories online, and people reading the story which you can find by typing ‘The Gingerbread Man’ into your search engine. We would always recommend that you watch each clip yourself first to ensure it has safe content for your child to watch. Or, you could try to learn the story yourself and have a go at retelling it to your child. If you explore using different voices for different characters your children will love it. Make it different and your children will remember!

The story is fairly simple, but it has a wonderful repeated refrain throughout the story:

‘Run, run, run as fast as you can, you can’t catch me I’m the Gingerbread Man!’

We will read the story to the children and retell the story as the children play, in the hope that they will begin to explore the words in the story and perhaps begin to repeat parts of the story. This play around the words in stories enable children to become aware of story structure and will contribute to their ability to learn to read in the future.

At this stage we want children to enjoy stories, to have fun with them, and hopefully see them as a treat.

NURSERY NEWS

18th December 2023 – Edition 318.   Last Newsletter of 2023       

(Next Newsletter Monday 8th January 2024)

Find out About

A. Reminder – Big Nursery – Apply for a Primary School Place by 15th January 2024

B. Christmas Parties

C. The Elf on the Shelf……

D. What the children are learning about this week?

E.Notes for the end of term /dates for beginning of Spring Term

 

A. Reminder- Big Nursery-Applying for Primary School.                                                      

Central Bedfordshire Council has contacted us to say that 16 of our pupils have not yet applied for a place at Primary School.

Who needs to apply?

Children born between 1 September 2019 and 31 August 2020 are due to start school in September 2024.

You need to apply before 15 January 2024.

How to apply

  • if Central Bedfordshire is your council, you need to apply through them.
  • if Central Bedfordshire is not your council, you’ll need to apply through your home Local Authority.

You will need to look on your Local Authority Council’s website for further information on how to apply.

 

B. Christmas Parties

Are Finally Here!

These parties are for all our children regardless of the days you attend.

Unfortunately parents will be unable to stay during the parties as we do not have enough room! Staffing ratio’s will be maintained.

Little Nursery Party.

Wednesday 20th December

9:00am to 10:00am

The Plan:

9:00 Doors Open

Children work in small groups to make ‘Christmas Crowns’

9:20 Party Snacks.

9:30 Surprise visit from Father Christmas

Songs for Father Christmas

Father Christmas leaves gifts for all children.

9:35 Back to groups to make a decoration.

9:50 Pass the Parcel Game.

10:00 Parents arrive to collect all children.

Big Nursery Party

Wednesday 20th December

11:15am to 1:00pm

The Plan:

11:15 Doors Open

11:25am Party Food

11:45am Surprise visit from Father Christmas.

Songs for Father Christmas.

12:00 Christmas Magic Show

1:00pm Parents arrive to collect all children.

 

C. Elf on the Shelf…..

That cheeky Elf has been busy in Nursery again! Miss England has been taking photographs of him, so that I can share with you all the things he has been up to!

  • He went for a ride in his hot air balloon in the garden.
  • He spent a day dressed as Mario, wearing a very furry moustache.
  • He then dressed as Elsa, from Frozen, and scattered snowflakes over Room 2
  • He went for a swim under the sea, with a big pink and purple octopuss.

 

D. What the children are learning about this week?

In Catkins, the children will be playing lots of games that focus on colour recognition. As the children play, they will be taught the names of different colours and will learn the importance of taking turns. We will also share some Christmas stories with each other and complete some Christmas puzzles together.

In the Link, the children will continue to work with colour as they use stamps and paint to create pictures. They will have a range of stamps and colours to choose from to make their marks on paper and adults will talk to the children about the paintings they are making.

In Room 3, the children will be focusing on maths. They will be making Christmas pictures. They will add presents onto their pictures and count how many presents that are underneath their tree. Adults will encourage the children to count independently but will support them as needed.

Outside, the children will focus on physical movement as they dance to music. Adults will encourage the children to move in a range of ways, strengthening their gross motor skills. There will be lots of action dances as well as some Christmas music for the children to move to.

In Room 1, children will be making Christmas pictures using shapes. Staff will provide some triangle shapes for the children to arrange into tree shapes, which they can attach to the paper with glue.

In Room 2, there will be hand painting activities for the children to explore colour and colour mixing. They will be encouraged to get different colour paint on each hand and to mix them together to see what happens.

In the garden, children will be singing and dancing to Christmas music. Children will be encouraged to show off their dance moves and the adults will join in by copying the moves shown to them.

 

E. Notes for the end of term /dates for beginning of Spring Term

On Wednesday 20th December the school will be open for the parties only. The school office will be closed on Wednesday 20th December

The staff would like to say Happy Christmas!

to all our families that celebrate Christmas.

We wish all our families a safe and happy break during the school holidays and look forward to seeing you in the New Year.

 

Spring Term begins on Thursday 4th January 2024

 

NURSERY NEWS

11th December 2023 – Edition 317

Find out About

A. Funding for 2 Year olds –Working Families- 15 hour Offer

B. Ensure siblings names are on the waitlist

C. Ensure all payments are up to date by Thursday 14th December.

D. School Office closed on Wednesday 20th December.

E. The Elf on the Shelf……

F. What the children are learning about this week?

G. Christmas Parties- A reminder.

 

A.Funding for 2 Year olds –Working Families- 15 hour Offer

You may have heard that the government is rolling out a new program of free funded education. The program will begin in April 2024 when eligible parents will be able to apply for a code, that will entitle them to free funded education for 15 hours.

We have received no official information as yet, apart from this email that was sent to us this week from the Department for Education.

So, I am sharing it with you. This offer is relevant to all working parents in Catkins Class of Little Nursery, if you meet the eligibility criteria.

From 2 January 2024, eligible working parents can apply for 15 hours of childcare for their two-year-old. Parents have until 31 March 2024 to apply for a code, with mid-January to the end of February being the optimum time to apply in case they need to provide further information to support their application.

To apply for a childcare code each parent needs to be working and earning the equivalent of 16 hours a week at national minimum/living wage and under £100,000 adjusted net income per year. This means that each parent needs to earn from just over £8,600 per year to be eligible for 15 hours a week of childcare during term time.

There is more information on the childcare support available to parents on the Childcare Choices website, where they can explore the early education entitlements and other government help with childcare costs.

 

We will send out reminders in the New Year through these newsletters to guide parents.

 

B. Ensure all siblings names are on the waitlist.

Please ensure you have put any younger brothers or sisters names on our waitlist. We know this new childcare funding offer will impact upon parental choices regarding attendance patterns for their children. We offer spaces to those families who have been on the waitlist the longest, within each termly cohort. So please ensure you have your children’s names down. We take children’s names onto the waitlist from birth.

 

C. Ensure all payments are up to date by Thursday 14th December.

Please ensure that all payments are made by 9:30am on Thursday 14th December for the remainder of this term and for the first week back.

 

D. School Office closed on Wednesday 20th December.

The 20th December is the school party day. The school is only open for the School parties. The office staff join in with the parties too. Staff will not be doing any administration tasks that day.

 

E. The Elf on the Shelf……

Miss England has invited a cheeky Christmas Elf to visit Big Nursery. The children have been really taken with him. When the children arrive each day, they find the Elf in a different place.

The cheeky Elf arrived by balloon on the first morning. Day 2 saw the Cheeky Elf Zooming off in to space inside his 3D rocket. Day  3 saw the Elf helping with Christmas decorations putting up the paperchains. Talk to your children about the Elf, they will be excited to tell you about what he has been doing.

 

F. What are the children are learning about this week?

In Catkins, the children are going to be decorating their party bags ready for their Christmas party on the 20th. They will use different resources to personalise their bags and staff will talk to the children about what will be happening on the day.

In the Link area, the children will be exploring paint, water and playdough. They will also have the opportunity to decorate a lovely wooden tree ornament with paint and glitter. Children will choose how they want to decorate their work and staff will show them how to hang them on the Christmas tree.

In Room 3, children will take part in a shared read of Dear Santa, written by Rod Campbell. They will turn the pages at the same time as the adult and look at the pictures underneath the flaps. Children will then discuss their favourite part of the story and what they might like for Christmas.

In Room 1, children will be making bookmarks with their names on. They will write each letter of their name onto tiles and stick them onto card. They will also be making their own calendars for the year 2024 to bring home. The children will dress up in silly outfits to make their calendar funny and personalised.

In Room 2, the stable will be set up for the children to learn about and role play a simple Christmas story. The children have heard the story of Christmas last week and can revisit their prior learning. Children will take it in turns to retell the story of Jesus being born and people coming from afar to visit the new baby.

Outside, staff will be supporting children in making festive bird feeders. They will learn that in winter, it is harder for the animals to find food, so they will be shown how to thread Cheerios onto pipe cleaners, and take them home to hang on nearby trees.

 

G. Christmas Parties

These parties are for all our children regardless of the days you attend.

Unfortunately parents will be unable to stay during the parties as we do not have enough room! Staffing ratio’s will be maintained.

Little Nursery Party.

Wednesday 20th December 

9:00am to 10:00am

The Plan:

9:00 Doors Open

Children work in small groups to make ‘Christmas Crowns’

9:20 Party Snacks.

9:30 Surprise visit from Father Christmas

Songs for Father Christmas

Father Christmas leaves gifts for all children.

9:35 Back to groups to make a decoration.

9:50 Pass the Parcel Game.

10:00 Parents arrive to collect all children.

 

Big Nursery Party

Wednesday 20th December

11:15am to 1:00pm

The Plan:

11:15 Doors Open

11:25am Party Food

11:45am Surprise visit from Father Christmas.

Songs for Father Christmas.

12:00 Christmas Magic Show

1:00pm Parents arrive to collect all children.

 

NURSERY NEWS

4th December 2023 – Edition 316

Find out About

A. Information regarding the beginning of the New Term in January 2024.

B. Big Nursery Parents joining us for Music Time.

C Parking with Consideration.

D. Labelling hats, scarves, gloves, coats.

E. Lost Property

F. What the children are learning about this week?

G. Christmas Parties

 

A. Information regarding the beginning of the Spring Term in January 2024.

School reopens on Thursday 4th January 2023

 

During the Autumn term, all children in Little Nursery have been classed as ‘Two Year Olds’. Little Nursery Children who have had their 3rd birthday between the 1st September 2023 and 31st December 2023 are now entitled to universal 15 hours funding, or for some families, 30 hours funding. These children will be based in Little Nursery, and their keyworker will be Miss Gaffney. They will now be known as ‘Green Group’. In January, five more children will join ‘Green Group’ from our waiting list.

 

B. Big Nursery Parents joining us for Music Time.

We sent out invitations to all Big Nursery parents (by email on 21st November) to join us for ‘Music’ time. The invitation detailed the date and time of the Music session that your child takes part in. If you would like to join your child to participate in our Music Activity ‘Pigs on Holiday’ then please just turn up at the date and time specified and you will be made very welcome. There is no need to book. Sessions last 25 minutes.

 

C Parking with Consideration.

On Friday, one of our neighbours came to speak to Mrs Barber as his driveway had been blocked by one of our parents.

We do ask all our parents to park with care and consideration for pedestrians, our neighbours and other road users. There are hundreds of children arriving in this little corner of Dunstable every morning as there are three schools very close to each other. I do tell neighbours that we always mention parking with consideration in our new parent packs, so every parent receives this message from the beginning, before their children even start with us. The family wrote to me on Friday afternoon, detailing the problems they experienced that morning as a consequence of not being able to get their cars off of their driveway. Please see the following:

 

I decided to include their comments so everyone can see how they were inconvenienced that morning. All parents of young children have pressured lives, juggling parenting, childcare and work responsibilities, but I would hope, as a school community we would still have time to think of others’ needs.

 

D. Labelling hats, scarves, gloves, coats.

The weather has now become very cold. Children are wearing more items of clothing to school. At the end of each day we end up with a huge pile of gloves, hats and scarves on the floor. We try very hard to match them to the correct child. Please ensure that all removable items are labelled. It does not have to be anything fancy, just your child’s initials written on the manufacturers label in biro would be very helpful. Unlabelled items will be placed in our Lost Property boxes, if staff do not know who the items belong to.

 

E. Lost Property

We have accumulated a number of items of clothing in our Lost Property box. These items are outside in the Library area. There are three drawers in the top of a cabinet labelled ‘Lost Property’. If your child has lost an item of clothing in the Autumn term: Please check to see if anything belongs to your child, and take it home. We will dispose of any unclaimed items at the end of term.

 

E. What are the children are learning about this week?

In Catkins the children will be exploring instruments and how to play them. The staff will help the children learn the names of different instruments and show them that the instruments don’t always have to be played in the same way. The staff will be playing Christmas music for the children to play along to.

In the Link, the children will have white playdough set out to represent snow and ice. Staff will talk to the children about the season of winter and explain that it sometimes snows in winter. They will discuss how cold it gets when it snows and there will be a large igloo for everyone to enjoy decorating and playing inside.

In the Catkins garden, the children will look for pictures of presents hidden by Santa. All of the presents will look the same and the children will be encouraged to think about what gifts might be inside the boxes. There will be ten pictures hidden and staff will re hide them in different places once they have been found.

In Room 3, there will be a Santa’s workshop set up for the children to play in. They will have the opportunity to work on their scissor skills and holding their pencils effectively as they cut and draw on Christmas themed paper. Adults will support the children with holding the scissors and making snips in paper.

In Room 1, the children will focus on literacy and writing letters to Santa. They will talk to staff about what they might like for Christmas and staff will encourage the children to write out a list. They will focus on holding their pencils effectively and making marks on paper.

In Room 2, the children will be using forks to create paintings of Christmas trees. They will use their fork to spread paint into the shape of a tree, adding decorations to make it look like the trees we have in school. The children will also work on their scissor skills as they cut out different shapes to make an elf hat. Adults will encourage the children to talk about the shapes that they need to cut out and the colours that they would like to use to decorate them. Outside, the children will be using natural and man-made resources to make a small scale version of a Christmas tree. The children will use clay as a base for the tree and will drizzle glue and glitter over the top to decorate it. Children will also work with staff to make reindeer food while some Christmas music is playing in the background.

 

F. Christmas Parties

These parties are for all our children regardless of the days you attend.

Unfortunately parents will be unable to stay during the parties as we do not have enough room! Staffing ratio’s will be maintained.

 

Little Nursery Party.

Wednesday 20th December

9:00am to 10:00am

The Plan:

9:00 Doors Open

Children work in small groups to make ‘Christmas Crowns’

9:20 Party Snacks.

9:30 Surprise visit from Father Christmas

Songs for Father Christmas

Father Christmas leaves gifts for all children.

9:35 Back to groups to make a decoration.

9:50 Pass the Parcel Game.

10:00 Parents arrive to collect all children.

 

Big Nursery Party

Wednesday 20th December

11:15am to 1:00pm

The Plan:

11:15 Doors Open

11:25am Party Food

11:45am Surprise visit from Father Christmas.

Songs for Father Christmas.

12:00 Christmas Magic Show

1:00pm Parents arrive to collect all children.

NURSERY NEWS

27th November 2023 – Edition 315

Find out About:

A School Photographer.

B. Christmas Cards

C. Fruit for snacktime.

D. Wipes and Nappy Sacks

E. Big Nursery 30 hours.

F. What are the children learning about this week?

 

A School Photographer.

The School Photographer has just delivered the school photographs this afternoon. They will be ready for collection  from tomorrow. The office staff will hand them to families, to ensure everyone has the correct pack.

Some parents ordered digital downloads. If you ordered digital images, they have already been emailed to you by the photographer. If you have not received your digital images, check your spam folder in the first instance, and then if you still do not have them, call the photographer directly:

Victoria Mitchell 07845 676258

 

B. Christmas Cards

We as a staff, would like to ask parents to consider sending just one Christmas card in to school, written ‘To all my friends at Willow’. These cards will then be displayed for all to see in the library corridor.

 

C. Fruit for snacktime.

We are finding that we do not have quite enough fruit to provide a fruit snack, on a daily basis, to all the children. So, would parents please consider donating a bag of apples, bananas or satsumas over the next few weeks so that we have enough fruit everyday for everyone.

 

D. Wipes and Nappy Sacks

Please remember to put a pack of wet wipes and nappy sacks in your child’s change of clothes bag.

 

E. Big Nursery 30 hours.

Are there any parents in Big Nursery that would like to increase their child’s attendance pattern from 15 hours to 30 hours per week in January?

If so, please speak to Mrs Davies/ Mrs Evans. We are suggesting this now because if you wish to use the ‘30 hours Funding for Working Families’ offer you must ensure a valid 30 hour code is in place by the 31st December 2023.

 

F. What are the children learning about this week?

In Catkins and Little Nursery, the children will be learning about Maisy Mouse. They will listen to lots of Maisy stories throughout the week and get to know the characters. The older children can discuss the stories with staff and decide which book they liked the best. Younger children will be using sponges and paint to make Maisy paintings. Staff will talk to the children about the shapes that they are using for their work. This week they will be focusing on using circles and triangles.

In the Link, the children will be using their fine motor skills to cut out and stick shapes together to create a Maisy picture of their own. Staff will offer support to individual children with cutting skills, but they will be encouraged to try and use scissors by themselves.

Outside in the Catkins garden, the children will be searching for Maisy characters. When they find them, they can sit in the teepee tent and talk about where they were hidden. There will also be some guttering set up for the children to roll balls and cars down. The staff can talk to the children about pushing the toys down the ramps and catching them in boxes.