Latest News

Nursery News 12th February 2024

Monday, February 12, 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

Monday, February 5, 2024

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

Monday, January 29, 2024

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

Monday, January 22, 2024

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

Monday, January 15, 2024
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.