Nursery News 9th July 2024


9th July 2024 – Edition 341

Find out About:

A. End of Term arrangements July 2024

B. Leavers Day –Friday 19th July- 8:50am-11:50am

C. Funding for Working Families- Ensure codes are in place /Renew codes.

D. Review of the year- Results.

E. What are the children learning about this week?


A. End of Term arrangements July 2024

The last day of term in July 2024 for all children will be Thursday 18th July.

This day will run as a normal Thursday. Timings of the day will be the same as all Thursdays.


B. Leavers Day –Friday 19th July- 8:50am-11:50am

On Friday 19th July school will open only for the Big Nursery children that are leaving us. The session will be from 8:50 am to 11:50am. All Big Nursery leavers are invited to attend this session, regardless of your child’s normal attendance days. As children are attending for the morning only, no child will require a packed lunch. Children will require their water bottles. Children should arrive at 8:50 am and wait outside as usual.

We have consulted the children about what activities they would like to plan for their last day and this is what they have come up with:

Children may dress up if they want to. Children may come to school in a dressing up outfit if they wish. There should be no pressure on anyone to buy an outfit. Normal Nursery clothes are absolutely fine too.

We have arranged for children to:

  • Play with dolls, cars, teddies and trains
  • Have songs and music, dancing, party lights, bubbles and balloons
  • Play pass the parcel.


At 10:30 am all children will sit down together for a picnic time in the garden. Staff will provide the snacks the children requested: cake, carrots, apples, cheese, crisps, ice creams and ice pops

The morning will finish with a group time for each colour group, where all children will receive a certificate praising their individual skills and/or qualities.

11:50am Going Home Time- Parents to collect children from the front gate. Children will be dismissed in the regular way, with Blue group first, followed by Orange group then Yellow group.


C. Funding for working families- Ensure funding codes are in place /Renew  codes.

A reminder about the eligibility checker:

Eligibility checker:

Eligibility will be checked via a childcare application developed by HMRC.

Parents are responsible for checking if they are eligible.


Parents need to visit the website This is the online eligibility checker.


Parents will be issued a code to take to the setting (nursery/ childminder etc.). 

There will be a grace period for parents where their circumstances change.  This will give parents the time to regain employment.

Parents must reconfirm their eligibility every three months via the HMRC online eligibility checker or else they will lose their entitlement, subject to the grace period.  Parents are essentially reconfirming that their employment status has not changed and they still meet the criteria. HMRC will send reminder emails to parents to notify them of the need to reconfirm.

For all parents who are entitled to funding for working families your child, please ensure that your code is in place and valid by 31st August 2024, to enable us to receive funding for your child for the Autumn term.

The government will send out reminders to families to renew your code. Please be aware that sometimes the government email may go into your Spam/ Junk email folder. If you code is not valid you will not receive funding


D. Review of the year- Results

I have had one family who replied to my request for feedback from parents.  I always share what parents say, as there may be some points raised which other parents may relate to….

  1. Please comment about what we do well at Willow.

Really happy with our daughter’s development during her time at Willow. She looks forward to spending time at the nursery and we are pleased with any changes during X’s time (potty training and leaving the dummy at home) have been supported and encouraged. The newsletter is a great asset to be able to talk to her about what she has been doing during the day.

It is good to hear feedback that your daughter enjoys her time here. We ultimately want children to be happy during their time here. I am pleased you read the newsletter and find it useful. I usually spend a couple of hours a week planning and writing the newsletter, and I’m never sure how many people read it!                                                                  Mrs Cashmore (one of our teachers) always writes the section ‘What are the children learning about this week?’ We know that two, three and four year olds are not very good at explaining what they have been doing at school!  We share this information so you can talk at home and extend your child’s learning. It is good to show interest from early on, so you can continue to support your child as they get older, and begin to get homework in primary and secondary school.   Leigh Davies


  1. Please tell us one thing you would like to see at Willow that you would consider to be an improvement and/or development.

Would like to have more regular catch up’s with key worker on our daughter’s day to day to know what she has been doing and anything she has enjoyed doing at nursery.

This is a very valid point. I do take this on board. This comment often appears here in our yearly review. We are quite a big setting. We dismiss up to 87 children at the end of the session. Our priority is to release children safely to their parents. If every parent had just 1 minute with their keyworker on handover it would take 87 minutes to speak briefly to everyone….. So this is not really possible. 

We have tried to help matters by sending keyworkers out early in the morning to speak to parents before school. I know some keyworkers are better than others at this, but I will try to encourage them all to be available outside 5 minutes before school begins in the morning, in September.

I am aware that Keyworkers are not always available at the end of the morning session, or at the beginning of the afternoon session. This is because we still have a school full of children to care for, and we have to squeeze in a 30 minute lunch break for all the staff. Arrivals and departure time at lunchtime requires every member of staff on duty to be involved with children somewhere in the school.

The new funding for Working Families initiative will bring change to the school. Individual children will  be staying for more sessions. Going forward we are likely to have less coming and going and children’s patterns of attendance will be more regular for the youngest children. Two year old children from working families are currently entitled to 15 hours of funded education. In September 2025 this will rise to an entitlement of 30 hours for two year olds from working families. Less children will do more hours and fill our school.

We induct children termly. Each termly cohort has their own Keyworker. We are tidying this up from September and making this information more explicit to parents. In September, ten children will be starting in little Nursery who became two years old between April and August. They will be known as Little Nursery Yellow Group, and if they attend Nursery at the beginning of the week, their Keyworker will be Mrs Cashmore, and if they attend at the end of the week, their Keyworker will be Mrs McGrath. My plan is, going forward, that parents in 2+Little Nursery will be able to speak with their keyworkers in the mornings. There will be 5 children in this colour group at each end of the week for the year 2024-2025. So we hope a brief daily catch up will be possible.                                                                                                       Currently the 2023-24 Little Nursery Yellow Group comprises of 16 children, choosing to attend random patterns of attendance, with three different keyworkers assigned.

I hope that in the Autumn term space will allow us to have some dates in our diary as  stay and play sessions, so, if parents wish, they can come into school with their child and join them in play, and of course, get to know staff.

I feel the school will feel more consistent and settled if younger children do begin to stay for more sessions. It is new to us…. We shall see. Leigh Davies

Willow Nursery School- Children’s Evaluation. July 2024

We ask all Big Nursery children 5 questions. Here are all their answers. I think they will make you smile!

1.   What do you like to do at Nursery?

Wear Princess Dresses

Playing with my friends.

Playing with ‘o’- Ninja  kids games, making things (junk modelling)

Playing football, Play with A.

Animals, train, going on a bear hunt.

Playing outside, Playing Avengers

Playing games-Ladybug with my friends

I like finding bugs, making things.

Playing outside with mu friend B, with the cars.


I play with my friend


Having fun with G, Playing on the slide

Playing with water and playdough

Playing with my friends,finding snails, I like playing with Miss H

Playing with my friends, Painting my mummy

Pencils- drawing

Play with Miss E

Learn numbers (counted 1-20)

I like to run and reading and drawing

The keys and locks, Making things in room 2

Play outside

I like to do running, I like walking, I like sliding down the slide.

I like to run and play on the screen with ‘wobble’

I like to have lots of fun and play.

I like to go outside. I Like making alphabets.

Be a cat

I like playing inside and outside, I like playing in the sandpit. I like the inside and outside cooker. I like playing playdough.

Dress up

I like to play ninja turtles. I love having my lunch when Mrs D reads a book

Sticking things, Playing with the water.

Playing outside, play on the slide, reading books..

I like to play outside, ride along on the bike, when we sing songs.

Playing with dinosaurs.

Happy at Nursery, Cars, Playing Outside –games

Playing Ariel

Play all around

Playing in room 5

Climbing Frames, Slide,

Playing Inside, riding the horse,

Basketball, football. I like going down the slide.

Play with toys, I play with the sellotape and the boxes.

Play with my friend A. I like to have lunch.

Playing snowball fights with Aston.

Drawing pictures of a rainbow in the garden

She shows me her happy face

Doing the register with Miss S

Play in all the rooms

Reading, I like going outside

Painting, eating lunch, reading books and learning.

Down the slide




2.   Is there anything you don’t like at Nursery?


She pretends to cry.

When Mummy and daddy are at home.

I don’t like everyone to push me.

When my friend cried outside because he was hurt.

When my friend trod on my hand and it made me cry.

I don’t like it when people push me, when people don’t share

Nothing makes me sad. I am sad today because there are no bikes.


When X jumps on me

Throwing mud because it goes in my beautiful hair.



When someone pushes me.

When X tries to hurt me.

I don’t like fighting, I don’t like being angry.

When it rains my hair gets wet.

I don’t like playing outside

X hitting me. They pulled my elbow

I like everything

When the bikes are not out

When people shout at me.

I like Nursery, No.

I don’t know.

I don’t know




I like lots of things here, there isn’t anything I don’t like

Spiky shells in room 5


When I don’t play with my friends.

When people get too loud.


Hitting me, pushing me.

No spitting

I don’t like finding worms and snails. They are disgusting!

Hitting x2

I don’t like anybody pushing me

I don’t like goggles.

I don’t like staying when mummy goes home.

I don’t like people shouting, shouting is for outside.

When I’m feeling sad.



3.   Tell me something you are good at now since coming to Nursery?


A,B,C,D’s Really good at football now

I have learned about books.

I am good at reading books.

Making things, making shapes.

Good at running fast. Ilike to play doctors.

Reading books

I know how to do balancing

Number 8 (child just watched numbertime programme, number 8)

Good at running fast. At first I didn’t know how to then my friend X showed me

Playing football.

Keys and numbers.

Playing hide and seek outside.

When I was little I was in Catkins. Now I am in big nursery and I am looking at the flowers

On the screen.

Being a baby

I’m good at riding the bikes. I can do the easy bike with one foot.

New Games, Being a good girl and friend

Good listening, writing my name, washing my hands.

Drawing with my friend.


Playing with my friends

Running fast, like Sonic!

Building animal cages.

New letters, building things,

Wolf game…. Dinner time!

Drawing pictures

Playing football, my name (spells name out)


Good at catching things.

My name

I do loads of letter ‘s’ snake.

I’m good at drawing and writing my name.

Doing Cartwheels, climbing and drawing, I love to write numbers.

I’m good at doing number 5 and number 2

I love catching balls outside and I can kick high into the school

I am good at drawing

I’m good at sticking stuff and making stuff.

Running, because I’m like dash!


I’m good at writing my name.

Balancing, climbing on the green things (ropes) outside

I’m good at playing with A. When I’m feeling sad, I’m good at finding something to play.

Writing my name

Being a cat


4.Tell me what you have learnt in Phonics:

‘a’ ‘g’ ‘p’

‘p’ I think ‘c’

It was a long time ago, I can’t remember.

Letters, numbers, ‘s’ ‘a’ ‘I’ ‘e’ ‘t’


I’ve learnt new letters like ‘o’ ‘on’ ‘off’ ‘on’

‘o’ is our new sound.

‘s’ ‘a’ ‘t’ ‘p’

‘a’ ‘s’ ‘e’

The car mat.

I don’t know, Wait! Actually I do! We did two words!

‘c’ ‘k’ ‘a’ ‘s’ ‘I’ ‘m’ ‘n’

‘s’ ‘a’ ‘t’ ‘I’ ‘p’ ‘n’ ‘m’


I learnt ‘c’ ‘c’ cat

‘p’ ‘p’ ‘p’ ‘f’ for fish, ‘f’ ‘r’ ‘o’ ‘g’ frog. We did lots of phonics.

‘t’ ‘n’ ‘a’ ‘m’ ‘c’

‘m’ ‘n’ ‘s’ they help us to read and write


I,p,m, snake

‘t’ ‘s’ ‘c’ ‘k’ ‘o’ ‘a’ ‘i’


Snake, ‘m’ ‘p pig’ ants on my arm.

‘n’ ‘m’ ‘a’ ‘s’ ‘I’

‘a’ rain rain go away. Taking a picture.

‘k’ ‘k’ sounds like ‘a’ (does action)

‘a’ ‘p’ ‘g’

I know sound like ‘p’ ‘I’ ‘a’ ‘m’

‘a’ ‘n’ ‘s’ ‘p’ ‘m’ (showed the actions too)

Jumping around


‘o’ my name.

Learning new letters like ‘g’

‘c,c, cow’ ‘c,c, cat’ ‘d,d,d, dog’ ‘h,h,h,hippo’ ‘pig’

‘a’ ‘I’ ‘d’ ‘s’ ‘o’ ‘p’  it’s good to keep doing it. We learn new things.

‘s’ ‘a’ ‘c’ ‘o’ ‘g’ ‘d’ (showed me actions)

Numbers, ‘s’ I know my name

‘a’ Ants on my arm.

Ants on my arm


5.How can we make Willow better for the new children?

Not sure

I don’t know.

Dinosaur and train track

Build another one.

Teddy bears with a carrot

We could do more dressing up.

Add flags and glitter everywhere

I don’t know.

The school is old, maybe buy a new school.

If my daddy came to school with his tools.

We could paint colourful pink, blue and white.

New bags, shoes, dress,

More races and a pool party. I think we should get a big trampoline

I think we should buy a soft play and lots of dancing.

Make the biggest tower, grow more flowers.

Dinosaur track

More books

A TV, quad bike.

McQueen toys

More children

More princesses at nursery.


Fire Truck

Make it tidy-all the children make it messy.

Play outside

Have all the toys and bikes out.

Everyone plays everywhere.

I don’t know.

Some other bricks. New Bricks, Yellow Brown or orange bricks.

A pool party.

There are lots of things here already.

Fix the door. Yesterday it broke.

Race cars.

A big teddy and a pillow.

Learning and playing

10 sizes- balance bar.

Spider Man and his team bikes.

Share and be kind

Play outside

I don’t know

Be quiet, you can’t be loud.

Everyone playing will make everyone happy

Decorations- superheroes and lovehearts for girls and boys.

Paint the windows, paint the cupboards yellow


E. What are the children learning about this week?


The theme this week is ‘Children’s Choice’.

The children have been asked what they would like to do around nursery this week. They have been encouraged to think of their favourite toys and activities and we have planned around them.

In Catkins, the children have chosen to have lots of dressing up clothes. They will be using their imagination as they play and staff will expand the children’s ideas by creating props to support their role play. Staff will model lots of language to extend the children’s ideas, they will ask questions, sing songs and comment on games being played. There will also be some sensory items to experience through the week, that the staff will introduce in different play scenarios.

In Catkins garden, the children have asked for bikes and cars. They will enjoy moving around the garden, using their feet and legs to push the vehicles around. Staff will encourage the children to wait for their turn and share the toys.  They will be praised for being patient and kind.

In the Link, the children have asked for painting and messy play. To provide these opportunities, the staff will set up an easel for free painting and a tray of cooked and dyed pasta for the children to investigate. The pasta will be dyed different colours and staff will talk to the children about this and the colours they have used in their painting. The children will have access to water play and exploration at the beginning of the week.

In Room 3, the children have asked for the train track to be set up and for dinosaurs. They have also stated that they would like lots of pink items! Staff will set up a small world scenario where the children can play with a variety of dinosaurs in an exciting setting. They will set up a simple train set for the children to see initially, then encourage the children to expand the track. They can make it bigger and more exciting, adding bridges, tunnels and lots of scenery. The children can help look for as many pink items as they can find.

In Room 2, the children are excited for summer and have asked for ice creams. Staff have been talking about the weather and different ways to cool down, including having ice pops at school for a treat. The children will be shown how to create pictures of ice creams, using paint and stamps.

They can also try their hand at bubble painting. This is an activity that the children have previously been introduced to, where they blow into paint using a straw and press their paper onto the bubbles to create a unique bubble effect picture.

Outside, the children have been helping staff to retrieve lost balls, hoops and beanbags. They have been discussing taking care of their toys and have asked if they can use these toys next week. Staff will encourage the children to use these toys in a sensible way so that they don’t get lost or stuck in the trees again. They have also chosen to have the bikes next week. Children will be able to practise riding the two wheeled bikes and will be supported with turn taking and being kind.