Nursery News 14th November 2022


14th November 2022 – Edition 278

Find out About

A. Little Nursery Options Forms for 3+ Nursery.

B. School Photographer

C Walk in the Dark.

D. Local Visits

E. Children in Need.

F. Please remember to call the office if your child is absent.

G  What are the children learning about this week?


A.Little Nursery Options Forms.

On the 17th October we sent out offer letters to all families in Little Nursery (with a date of birth between 01/09/2019 and 31/08/2020 inviting you to choose an attendance pattern for your child when they become entitled to 15/30 hours of funded education. I am pleased to say we have received paperwork back or spoken to all parents now. I have put all the Little Nursery names onto a big timetable for their 3+ time.

I can confirm that all parents in Little Nursery can have their first choice of attendance pattern as selected by them on their options form.

I now move to the waiting list, to fill all the empty spaces available, for children to join 3+ nursery in January, April and September 2023. The January 2023 intake is now full. I will shortly begin working on the April 2023 intake.

B. School Photographer.

As promised, the school photographer returned the photo proofs on Thursday 10th November. Since then we have been handing them out to parents, when your children have been in. Victoria has asked that all orders should be returned to Nursery by Thursday 17th November

C. Walk in the Dark

Miss Howe is organising a ‘Walk in the dark’, an activity for children and their parents to attend together, after school, on Thursday 17th November at 5:00pm. If you plan to come, please send an email to Mrs Selth entitled ‘Walk in the dark’ detailing your child’s name and how many adults and children will be coming. We have 86 families who attend Willow Nursery School. So far only 25 have signed up.

It’s been a few years since we have had a Walk in the Dark. We turn off as many lights in school as possible. School is lit just by a few lanterns. The children’s faces are a picture when they come in and find their school in darkness. It looks completely different!.

So what happens?. Families come in at the front entrance of the school. Parents sign in. Children then collect a clipboard with a look and find sheet attached, with photographs of a number of soft toy animals that are hidden in the dark garden. Families then go off to find the hidden toys. If you have a torch, do bring it. The children love exploring with a torch!. Then, when you have found all the hidden characters it is time to stop for some refreshments….. Having something to eat in the garden, in the dark, is quite different. I’ve heard rumours that we may be having hotdogs ( or cheese rolls for vegetarians) cookies and squash.

This event is free.

The refreshments are free, too. We would like everyone to have to opportunity to come.


D. Local Visits.

A reminder, that this week, all children in Big Nursery will exploring the Local area near to the school in small groups, supported by staff. We are aware that heavy rain is forecast for parts of this week. Staff risk assess these local visits. We would not choose to take the children out in heavy rain, as we would be unable to achieve our learning intentions. Decisions will be made on the day, as to whether the small trips go ahead.


E. Children in Need.

Friday the 18th November is BBC Children in Need day. We are very happy to make a collection on behalf of the ‘Children in Need’ charity. A donation bucket will be available on the gate at drop off and collection times should anyone wish to donate.


F. Please remember to call the office if your child is absent.

We ask all parents to telephone the school and report your child’s absence, preferable before the registers are completed. Staff complete registers for their groups of children. I, Mrs Davies, then collate the information from the registers, noting down who is absent. I then double check with the school office to see if we have had a phone call from the parents of absent children. If we have not heard from a family, we will call you to find out why your child is absent.

Please help us by phoning in to the school office and telling us about all absences. We do have an answer phone, which we do check regularly during the school day, so please do feel able to leave a message about your child’s absence.

Some parents are really good at calling in, thank you, it helps us greatly.


Nursery attendance is not compulsory. School becomes compulsory for all children the term after they turn 5. However we are required to encourage good attendance and good timekeeping to get families ready for formal schooling.

When you update us about a child’s absence we can put the correct absence code in the register. For example, this morning when I did the register we had 17 children absent.out of a possible 62 children. That is an absence rate of 27%, which is quite high.

We can monitor if we have any childhood illnesses spreading, (such as chickenpox). We can monitor the incidence of tummy upsets. It is expected that children will get colds etc when children begin at nursery or school for the first time, because they are suddenly exposed to more viruses.


Please help us to keep our school as healthy as possible. Please do not send in children who are unwell. Children with temperatures should not be sent to Nursery. Children with an upset stomach, or vomiting should not be sent to Nursery. At Nursery we have strict adult to child ratio’s which must be adhered to. If staff pick up illness from the children and are absent it leaves us with a staff shortage.  Any staff absence impacts upon the children’s learning opportunities.


G. What are the children learning about this week?

The theme in little nursery is colour and light

In room three, Mrs. Brinkley will be using magnets to tell the story of Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? The children will place the magnets on the board to help Mrs. Brinkley tell the story. This will improve the children’s colour recognition skills and boost their confidence with taking part in group activities.

In the link, Miss Gaffney will set up the dark tent and provide torches and other resources for the children to explore light and colour. The children will be encouraged to take turns in the dark tent to ensure safety. Encouraging turn taking will show the children how important it is to share our resources.

In Catkins, Mrs. Field will be making binoculars with coloured lenses. The children will choose which colour lenses they would like their binoculars to have and Mrs. Field will discuss what effect these lenses have when they look through them.

Outside, Mrs. Watson will be joining the children on a colour hunt. They will look around the garden to see how many different coloured items Mrs. Watson has hidden. As the children discover the hidden colours, Mrs. Watson will talk with them about their favourite colours.


The theme in big nursery is our local area

In room one, Mrs. Patterson will set up a supermarket for the children to role play in. they will use their first hand experience of shopping in the local area to act out scenarios in the shop. The children will be given shopping lists and asked to find the items on the lists, they will be asked to count out their items to ensure they have collected the correct amount.

In room two, Miss Skai will be investigating different ways to make marks on paper and symmetry. Miss Skai will demonstrate how to dip string in paint and place it on paper to leave colourful stripey patterns on the paper, she will then show how to fold the paper in half and create a symmetrical pattern as the paint imprints on both sides.

Outside, Miss Howe will be joining the children on an autumn hunt. Everyone will look around the garden for listed items and stick them onto a sheet. Miss Howe will talk to the children about the seasons changing and when and where these items can usually be found.

Mrs. Cashmore will provide Duplo bricks with pictures of the local area stuck to them for the children to examine. The children will be encouraged to build their own town using the images of the local landmarks that they may recognise from their travels.