There are currently 50 children in the Early Years Unit, 30 in Reception and 23 in Nursery.
We have a morning Nursery and an afternoon Nursery and full time places are available.
There are two teachers, Miss Snowden and Mrs Ramzan, one Nursery Nurse, Mrs Ahmed, an Early Years practitioner, Miss Hall and three teaching assistants, Mrs Kousar, Miss Samina and Mrs Amjad. We all work closely together to ensure the children have an exciting and stimulating start to their education.
Throughout the week we have literacy, numeracy and phonics inputs and we like to make it as interactive as possible. Sometimes we go on hunts for letters or numbers, we bake every week and have a weekly parent library. We often change what has been planned to go with the children’s interest’s whether it be to build a den, go on a bear hunt, splash in the puddles or build an igloo in the snow.
We learn about the world around us, our physical development and how to develop as young people socially and emotionally.
Every adult that works within the unit strives to get the best for your child and we encourage parents to chat to us and get involved with their children’s learning.
Nursery Newsletter Learning Log Recommended Reading Bertie Bear Help@Home
We went to watch My Neighbour Totoro, a tale of two girls in the countryside that meet a giant, cuddly cat named Totoro. The film is a message of hope and optimism explored through fantasy in times of hardship. This acclaimed animated tale by director Hayao Miyazaki follows schoolgirl Satsuke and her younger sister, Mei, as they settle into an old country house with their father and wait for their mother to recover from an illness in an area hospital. As the sisters explore their new home, they encounter and befriend playful spirits in their house and the nearby forest, most notably the massive cuddly creature known as Totoro.
06/11/2017 – Bonfire Day
The children worked together to build a huge bonfire, then started to make a Guy to put on top.
We used yellow and orange cellophane to represent the fire.
Our fire is ready; we are waiting for the delicious food to warm us up.
The warm baked potato with mushy peas is delicious.
We hope everyone had a fun and safe bonfire night!
A Great, British Tradition
On the 5th of November, people across the UK celebrate Bonfire Night with fireworks, bonfires, sparklers and toffee apples. It’s the night of the year we all look forward to, when it’s worth it braving the cold night air to see some amazing fireworks and to enjoy and share food such as: baked potatoes, mushy peas, pies, soup, and many more local traditional foods.
The reason we do it is because it’s the anniversary of an attempt to blow up the Houses of Parliament.
This was called the Gunpowder Plot.
When we light bonfires to remember this event, traditionally there will be a dummy man on the top of the fire. He is called the ‘Guy’ and is a kind of doll that represents a man who was part of the plot, called Guy Fawkes.
Guy (Guido) Fawkes was part of the Gunpowder plot in 1605. He wanted to blow up King James I and his government.
So, Fawkes and his group put 36 barrels of gunpowder in cellars underneath the Houses of Parliament in London, ready to set off a massive explosion.
However, one member of Fawkes’ group sent a letter to his friend who worked in Parliament, warning him to stay away on the 5th of November. The King’s supporters got hold of the letter and the plot was rumbled!
Guards broke into the cellars where the gunpowder plotters were waiting. They were arrested and executed.
Have a look at our updated areas of provision within Early Years. We have added lots of natural resources and everyday objects that the children can find within their own homes or when out and about. We are promoting the childrens creative development skills and how to use resources in a range of ways.
The children have been embracing the provision within the Early Years unit over the past couple of weeks and within the loose parts and maths area they have been using the objects to make pictures and patterns. One child made different shapes within their picture frame and talked about all the other things he knew were the same shape within the environment.
The children have been making rockets and dens by using tape, tubes and canes. They then found some material to cover it and enclose the space.
We have started learning the story of Whatever Next and the children have been using the props to re tell the story. Talk to your child about how baby bear got to the moon, what would you pack in your suitcase if you were going?
09/10/2017 – The Tiger Who Came to Tea
This morning, when we arrived there was a surprise waiting for us. We were all very excited because a tiger had come to visit. He had a letter and a present for us.
Mrs Ramzan, read the letter to us. We found out that someone had told the tiger that we were a very kind class, so he wants us to look after him. He also needs our help because he thinks he has upset his friend Sophie and wants to know how to make her happy again.
Next we opened the present; it was a book about the tiger. We listened to the story and found out why Sophie might be upset with him.
The story is about a girl called Sophie, her mother, and a tiger who interrupts their afternoon tea. He is very hungry and eats all their food!
To start helping the tiger, we started with trying to teach the tiger how much and what type of food he should be eating.
This afternoon we have been busy sorting our planting area. There was lots of weeding to be done. We have started preparing our garden for spring.
As winter is looming, we will also be thinking about plants that will survive the cold weather.
After removing the weeds, we planted daffodil bulbs. We can’t wait to see them in spring!
The children have been very busy this week exploring media and materials. They have been manipulating strips of paper to make a 3D pattern.
We have been developing our fine motor skills by using the tweezers to collect beads. We added a sand timer and turned it into a competition to see how many beads the children could collect before the time ran out.
As we continue to learn through the story of Elmer some of the children have painted fantastic pictures. They have thought about the shape of his body as well as the different colours on his body. How was Elmer different to the other elephants? What did he do to look the same?
This week we have been continuing to learn through the story of The Three Little Pigs. The children have been learning different actions during literacy to help them remember the story.
In the craft area the children have been exploring different materials and making their own houses.
Reception have introduced a ‘tinkering’ area and the children have been using tools to explore a range of equipment. We have talked about how to use the tools safely and what we can use each tool for.
We have started to learn the story of Elmer and talk about how Elmer is different to the other elephants but that it is ok to be different and we are all unique. What makes you unique?
The year has started well in the Early Years Unit and all the children have settled in well. Friendships are being formed and the children are responding well to new rules and routines.
Our topic this half term is ‘We are all different’ so we are learning through the story of The Three Three Little Pigs and Elmer. We have been talking about who lives in our houses and the different members of our families.
We have been using mirrors to look carefully at our faces and using different materials we have made faces. We have then compared faces with other people and discussed the differences. Do we all look the same? What makes you different?
We will be moving on to learn about birthdays and how different people celebrate them. When is your birthday and how do you celebrate it?
We also spent some time with the road safety team and practiced how to cross the road safely, holding an adults hand. We took this learning outside and set up a road with a lollypop lady and road signs and the children took it in turns to safely cross the road.
This week in Reception it has been raining, But instead of being upset we decided investigate and measure how much rain has fallen on the ground!
The children placed rain catchers outside in the playground we left them out all night and measured them this morning.
Lets hope the weather gets better for sports day on Friday.
We were very busy last week getting ready for Fathers Day! Reception made a card and decorated a frame for their Dads and were very proud! Even the Nursery children got involved and made their own cards.
Wow! What an exciting half term we have had, Reception and Nursery have been looking at different types of minibeasts.
In Maths Reception have used minibeasts to help add and subtract single digit numbers, some of us can even write the number sentences. In Nursery we have been counting the legs of different minibeasts, did you know a caterpillar has 14 legs?
In Literacy we have been writing labels and sentences about caterpillars, butterflies and ladybirds, we can also match upper and lowercase letters.
This half term we have been looking after some caterpillars, we have been learning all about their life cycle. When we came to school after the weekend we had 2 butterflies!
This week in Nursery and Reception we have been learning about Chinese New Year! We have a Chinese takeaway and lots of traditional clothing. We made lanterns and painted Chinese good luck symbols.
We have also continued looking at dinosaurs, by comparing the size of different dinosaurs, going on dinosaur hunts and creating our own stories using dinosaur masks.
We are still trying to write our names independently if you could help us practice this at home it would be a great help.
We have been busy over the last few weeks! Here are a few of the things we have been doing.
In Reception and Nursery we have been looking at dinosaurs! Reception even had a Tyrannosaurs Rex visit them and it left an egg behind, the children looked after the egg really well and last week it hatched and the baby dinosaur is taller than all the children! We have also been making tracks with the dinosaurs using brown paint, and making dinosaur models using the play dough. Reception have been counting dinosaurs and match the amount to the correct numeral, some of us can even add two groups of dinosaurs together.
We have been looking at lots of different stories to help us with our own writing, even Nursery have started to do a ‘Big Write’ on a Friday where they draw their own version of the story. All the children are enjoying the topic and are excited to find out about all of the different dinosaurs.
Last week the children did us proud during the Early Years assembly. They were clear and confident and everyone commented on how well behaved they all were when it was not their turn to speak or sing. Well done to all of them!
The children have been busy making Christmas cards and calendars to bring home at the end of the week and learning more Christmas songs with Mrs Florence this week.
On Friday the children came to school dressed in their party clothes and we celebrated Christmas by eating, dancing and playing games, the children had a great time, especially when a special visitor wearing red turned up to see them. We also said goodbye top Miss Lodge, our Nursery student teacher on Friday, we wish her luck for the future.
On Monday the children took part in the school fundraiser and made melted snowmen biscuits, friendship bracelets and buns to sell on their stall, they were a big hit and today the children have come to school wearing all sorts of Christmas outfits.
Will you be celebrating Christmas in your house? Do you know someone who will? What other celebrations do you take part in throughout the year? Talk to your child about different festivals and celebrations that different people celebrate each year.
After the holidays we will be learning about the Chinese New Year and Shrove Tuesday. Why not try and find some information about these occasions that your child can share with the class?
Have a lovely holiday and we look forward to seeing everyone in January.
It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas in the Early Years unit. The children helped to decorate the classroom by putting up the Christmas trees and decorations and the home corner has been transformed into Santas grotto. Buddy the Elf arrived in Reception and is causing mayhem, however he is a great example of how not to behave and the children are using the experience to learn about what Buddy should do and how he should behave rather than focusing on making wrong decisions. He has managed to ‘trash’ the classroom on a number of occasions and the children have not only helped to clear up his mess but also write letters to Santa informing him of Buddys bad behaviour.
The Christmas assembly is well under way and the children all have a part to play from the shining star to a member of the choir. Please come and support your child by watching it on Wednesday 14th December in the school hall.
Don’t forget homework is due in next week and the homework party will take place for those that have completed enough tasks.
This week the animal lady came to visit us and brought along some of her pets. There were spiders, tortoises, snakes, rats and insects. The children got to touch the different creatures and some were brave enough to let them sit on their shoulders.
We took this learning back to the classroom and drew pictures of our favourites. The reading area was transformed into a wild animals area and the children practiced their fine motor skills by cutting out spiral snakes and we hung them from the roof. The children then made hedgehog bread with Miss Lodge. Next week we will start to transform the unit into a Christmas wonderland.
This week we have been learning about bullying, what it means, what we can do to prevent it and who to ask for help if we need to. On Monday the children’s assembly was focused around anti bullying and a company came in to talk to the children about it. Each child was given a pack with lots of anti bullying goodies in. The children have the completed a range of activities within their classrooms from making friendship bracelets to role play and making anti bullying posters in their French lessons. On Thursday we all wrote our initials on a balloon and a pledge to stop bullying and on Friday the children’s parents were invited to join us for a balloon release. The children were asked to wear red as a symbol to stop bullying and we all released our balloons to spread our message. We hope to hear back from people who find them to see how far our message has been spread.
We have had lots of celebrations to learn about this week in the Early Years Unit.
We continued with our light and dark topic and how the children had celebrated Halloween. There were four large pumpkins in the classroom and the children had to use the hammers to hit the tees into the pumpkin, we were focussing on improving our fine motor skills.
We started on Monday by looking at Diwali. We talked about who celebrates it and how they do so. We made Mehndi hands and Diva lamps as well as Diwali cards to give to our families. We also made Rangoli patterns in the tough tray and patterns on the playground.
We then moved on to look at Bonfire Night. We talked about how people celebrate it and how to keep safe. We made chocolate apples and covered them in sprinkles for our celebrations on Friday. We went outside and toasted marshmallows and made splat pictures to resemble fireworks. The children were very excited when they threw the magic sand onto the fire and it changed colour.
Next week we will be moving on to look at different people who help us, both at home and within the community. Talk to your child about the different people that help them and what they do. We will be reading the story of The Jolly Postman and the role play area has been transformed into a post office for the children to write letters, send parcels, weigh different objects and take it in turns to play the shop keeper. Why don’t you encourage your child to write a letter or draw a picture, put it in an envelope, take a trip to the post office, buy a stamp and post the letter then wait for the post person to deliver it.
This week the classrooms have been transformed to link to the childrens interests in what they had been seeing at the shops so we have changed our topic to focus on light and dark, looking at the books Winnie the Witch and Meg and Mog. The children have loved the fancy dress costumes and have gotten into character to create imaginative stories using the props available.
There has been witches broth made in the water tray, spiders stew in the builders tray and a whole host of orange and black activities splattered around the room. Feel free to come in and have a look.
Reception have been using the ipads and the Interactive white board to practice their letter formation on the program ‘letter join’.
As we continue to learn about the season of Autumn we have been for a walk around school to collect leaves that have fallen off the trees. We looked at the different colours, shapes and sizes and we are going to make some hedgehogs using the ones we collected.
The children have made some chocolate witch hats and decorated them as well as painting skeletons and making spiders in the play dough. We have also started to explore pumpkins and had some in the water tray for the children to explore.
This week we have been reading the story of Elmer the Elephant, we all painted a square and which we then stuck on to a giant Elmer. The children made Elmer collages and masks and acted out the story.
On Thursday we found out about how to stay safe on the road, we got to dress up as cars and lollipop ladies.
We also learnt a new song with actions to help us be safe on the road
(To the tune of ten green bottles)
Stop Look Listen before you cross the street,
Stop Look Listen before you cross the street,
Use your eyes use your ears before you move your feet,
Stop Look Listen before you cross the street.
Can you remember the rules you need to cross the road safely?
Back in the classroom we have been driving our own cars around number tracks with small cars, practicing how to form our digits.
Don’t forget we have a parent meeting on Thursday 6th October in the Reception classroom to discuss homework, reading, and class dojos.
This week we used the extra bananas from snack to make banana and chocolate chip cake. We also made some pizza breads for snack using the tomatoes.
Reception took a trip to the secret garden and went on a hunt for fairies. They found some fairy trails but struggled to see any fairies. Miss Bano told the children that the fairies only come out in the garden when it is really quiet and peaceful. She told them she had met a fairy once who had invited her for tea. They had sparkly jam sandwiches and blue sparkly juice that tasted like bubblegum. The children are keen to try them.
We ventured on to the KS1 playground to explore the new climbing area and the children flew down the slide, taking turns and waiting patiently.
The children enjoyed the rain when it came and began jumping in the puddles. It was so much fun.
Next week we will introduce the story of Elmer and begin to talk about how we are all different and unique.
This week in the Early Years unit we have been settling in and getting to know our new teachers and setting as well as making lots of new friends with our peers.
We baked some buns for snack time and the children helped to decorate them, they were very colourful!
On Wednesday the children helped Ms Bano to dig up some of the vegetables from the garden, we found, carrots, potatoes, onions and tomatoes and used them to make vegetable pasta. The children loved it and even asked for seconds.
The children have been getting used to the rules and routines in the setting and we have made class charters to ensure each child understands their responsibility to make the right choices whilst at school.
We enjoyed the sunshine and even had an ice pop outside on Thursday to cool down. The children thoroughly enjoyed splashing in the paddling pool and builders trays. Reception settled in so well that they attended two assemblies, singing on Wednesday and celebration on Friday. They were so well behaved they won class of the week. Well done Reception!
Over the past few weeks we have been learning a range of stories: Jack and the Beanstalk, The Hungry Caterpillar and the Little Red Hen as well as Oliver’s Vegetables.
We have been thinking about all the different vegetables that can be grown in the garden and have planted potatoes, carrots, salad, cress, tomatoes, beans, peas and courgettes in ours. The children are checking them daily to see whether they have changed and are looking after them by watering them when they look a bit dry. We planted them on a really sunny day but the week after there was a frost so we will keep checking and see if they have survived the cold. Can you think of some meals we could make using all the different ingredients?
We bought some potatoes, peeled them and chopped them up before frying them to make chips. We also talked about what else we could make using poatatoes. The children were surprised to learn where crisps come from.
The caterpillar eggs arrived and hatched shortly after. They have been eating their way through a huge pile of food before turning themselves into cocoons and attaching themselves to the top of the butterfly house. We will keep our eyes peeled to see when they turn into butterflies.
We are still waiting for the tadpoles to grow their legs and turn into frogs.
The children helped Miss Snowden to paint the mud kitchen and they have been thinking about what we can use it for. The staff have been encouraging the children to use their imaginations and how to use objects to represent something different. We went out into the school grounds and collected a range of ‘ingredients’ for the kitchen and the children have had fun making different dishes. We had dandelion juice, daisy cake, grass korma and mud daal.
With the beautiful weather we explored how to freeze an ice pop and then what happened when we took it out of the freeezer and left it in the warm sunshine.
This week we have made bread with the children to link to The Little Red Hen story. Can you write instructions about how to make it? What ingredients and equipment do we need?
We discussed the moral behind the story, about how nobody helped the little red hen to make her bread so she didn’t let them eat it when it was ready. Do you think she made the right choice? Why?
Homework is due in this week and we have had some amazing beanstalks produced by the children. How tall can you make yours? What materials do you need? Can you write instructions so others can make one too?
Well done to all the children who completed their book reviews. There is lots of excitement about the ‘movie night’ and the children will be voting for the film they would like to watch.
Preparing for Easter
As we get ready for the Easter holidays the children have been learning about Easter and what it means. They have been talking about the similarities and differences between different festivals and celebrations and talking about their own personal experiences.
The children have made Easter cards and chocolate nest buns as well as having a visit from the Easter bunny who left them lots of chocolate eggs hidden around the outdoor area. The children decided they would find as many eggs as they could but then they should share them out equally which I was very impressed with.
They have been reading number sentences and solving them with Easter eggs as well as ordering numbers and making words before deciding whether it was a real word or a made up one.
The children wrote instructions about how to make a crispy bun and took photographs of their friends preparing them.
Ask your child why people give Easter eggs, what do they symbolise? Why don’t people give Easter cubes or pyramids?
We have had some fantastic homework in this half term and the children have been really excited to share it with their peers. Well done to all the children that achieved enough points to attend the party which was based around cupcakes. The children decided they wanted to make and decorate cupcakes so that is what they did.
The children have been making chicks this week using play-dough and various media to add details to them.
As Easter is approaching we have created an Easter shop with the children and there are a range of Easter treats available to buy throughout the day. The children have been taking it in turns to be the shopkeeper and the customer and using their mathematical skills to help them add up the totals and use the vocabulary related to money.
As the weather gradually improves and we move into Spring we have added a maths problem solving area linked to Spring. This week the children have been making number sentences, using the chicks to help them solve the problems and writing their number sentences on the drywipe boards.
British Values Day
We were very busy during British Values Day as there seemed to be so many things to do and learn about and not enough time, however the children surprised us with their huge bank of knowledge about being British, what it means and the things that represent it.
We started our day by learning about British values, being equal and respecting each other which the children knew lots about. We moved on to look at famous British landmarks and found that Ms Ahmed had been to most of the places. The children had seen some of the landmarks such as Big Ben and the Tower of London. They recognised Blackpool Tower and worked together to make a large Tower Bridge. Spend some time with your child talking about the different places in Britain and the landmarks you could see if you visited them . The children were very excited to learn about the Loch Ness monster and created some fantastic art work of their ideas about what they thought it might look like.
We made British flag paper chains and hung them up in the classroom before making sandwiches and scones for our afternoon tea party. Can you remember what ingredients we need to make a scone? What other traditional foods do people like to eat in Britain?
Why not play a quiz game with your child and ask them lots of questions about Britain, for every question they get right they get a point. Can they score more points than anyone else in the house? Here are a few to get you started: How many countries are in Great Britain? Where does the Queen live? What is the Queens name? What does being fair mean? Where would you find the Loch Ness Monster? How do big boats get past Tower Bridge? What colours are in the British flag?
This week we have followed the children’s interests by making a fairy garden in the playground. The children helped to put it together, adding various bits, using resources from around the classroom and outdoors. We have also enhanced the children’s learning with their camping interests by adding sleeping bags and a mini campfire with some fish to fry.
We continued with our superhero theme by talking about what a super power is, what it looks like and what powers we would choose if we could. The children liked the idea of flying and they shared their ideas with staff who have made a display. We talked about our own everyday powers, things we are good at and things we would like to get better at because learning never stops, just because we know something doesn’t mean we know everything.
The superhero challenge wall is popular with the children who have a daily challenge to complete. Every time they finish a challenge their superhero gets to jump to the next building until they reach the end. When they get to the end they will get a superhero token which they must keep safe. They then start from the beginning and repeat 3 times until they have 3 superhero coins which they can then swap for a prize of their choice.
Reception went on a trip to Tesco to learn about where food comes from. They were shown around the store and got to taste some freshly made bread and fresh fruit as well as being given a little goodie bag each to take home. It is really important that the children understand where food comes from and we only buy it from Tesco and other shops and that is not where it is grown.
Homework is due in next week so make sure it is completed and handed in by Thursday 17th. The children decided they would like a cupcake party to celebrate so we will be baking and decorating on Wednesday 23rd March.
The chicks have grown and are starting to develop their feathers. They will return to farm life over the weekend and continue to grow, hopefully producing some more eggs for us next year.
World Book Day 2016
We had great fun during World Book Day with the children dressing up as various characters and we started our day with parents coming in to have breakfast and read a book with us. The children thoroughly enjoyed it.
We read the story of Journey but not before the children had to guess what the book would be about from clues. They were given the book, wrapped up with two peep holes and they were asked to think about what they could see and give their story suggestions.
We made a class book of all the things the children would draw if they had a magic red crayon, it is in the reading area for the children to look at and share with their friends. We also thought about where we would like to go if we drew a magic door. There were a range of places from alphabet zoo and relatives houses to the North Pole and Pakistan.
We also made some magic carpets to link with the story by cutting paper and weaving strips through it. The children really persevered and they look fantastic.
We talked about our favourite story books and a couple of children used their imaginations to make up their own stories in front of the whole class.
Why not spend some time at home making up a story. Think of some characters and a setting and talk to your child about the sequence of a story. Fold a few pieces of paper in half to make a mini book and encourage your child to draw illustrations, key words or sentences from the new story. Don’t forget to think of a title.
We have been busy as usual this week in the Early Years and we dropped everything when the snow arrived. We wrapped up and ran outside to explore it. Dennis noticed that when he moved the large numbers they left a print on the wall.
The Life Caravan was in school this week and Reception spent some time in there with Lucy and her per Harold talking about how to keep healthy and safe.
We have been using the bee bots this week and the children worked with a partner to give instructions and programme the bee bot to get to its destination.
We have been talking about real superheroes, including our mums who help us everyday and the children made cards to say thank you.
As we have been learning about subtracting the children have helped to set up a mini maths station with a Spring theme. They decided that we needed some chicks and flowers and Miss Snowden added some pebbles and a whiteboard.
On Friday we will celebrate World Book Day, come along and take part in our ‘Breakfast with a book’ session.
Chick Update – 02/03/2016
We arrived at school this morning to find one of the eggs had not only cracked but the chick was out of its shell and moving about.
Throughout the day we have had another 3 chicks hatch and are doing well. We are still watching the other 5 eggs carefully. Keep your eye on the chick cam.
The eggs have arrived! – 01/03/2016
On Monday the annual delivery of eggs arrived in school and were set up in the unit. Claire from Hatch It talked to us about the process of what will happen. There are 9 eggs, all different colours, brown, beige, blue and even green. The eggs are 20 days old and are ready to rest in the warm incubator. In a couple of days the chicks should begin to break out of the egg by using a sharp tooth on the end of their beak to crack it. It is really important that we do not touch the incubator.
Once the chicks have cracked the egg shell it can take between 2 and 24 hours for them to be completely free. Then they must stay in the incubator for a couple of hours to get them nice and warm.
Once they are out they will go in the chick box which has a bed of saw dust and a heat lamp. They will have water to drink and some special food to eat and then we will be able to touch them and see how they feel. Within a few days of hatching the chicks fur will begin to turn to feathers and within 21 weeks the chick will be an adult hen!
The children will be keeping daily diaries of the eggs and recording the changes they see. Can you guess which egg will hatch first?
Since the holidays we have been immersing ourselves in the Superhero world. The classroom is being transformed with the help of the children and so far they have made ‘Superhero Street’, a bat cave and a jail. The children have been learning the story of Super Daisy and next week they will begin to change the characters and settings within it.
Superhero costumes are proving to be very popular and so we made some extra capes with the children using different materials. They all have a different phase 3 sound on the back of them. The children have started making superhero masks and designing their own costumes. Outside the children have been making large superheroes using boxes, tape and paint as well as superhero vehicles.
In the maths area there is a save the superhero challenge where the children have to get as many superheroes as they can out of the box in one minute, however they can only use the tongs. We have been ordering and measuring superheroes by height and talking about our own superhero powers – what are you really good at?
Chinese New Year
On Monday we celebrated Chinese New Year and talked about different festivals and celebrations. We talked about how celebrating the Chinese New Year is different to how we celebrate occasions such as Christmas and Eid. The unit was transformed into China Town, starting with the children decorating the home corner. We had noodles to play with and glittery playdough to try and shape into Chinese numbers. The children made marks in the red gravel and some children tried to write Chinese numbers. The water tray turned red and was filled with glitter. The children made Chinese dragon masks and used them to dance to some Chinese music. They tasted prawn crackers and baked some spring rolls which we ate at snack time. Some children made monkey mobiles as this year is the year of the monkey according to Chinese traditions. They are now hanging in the feelings tree.
We have been learning about capacity in the unit over the past couple of weeks and the children have been exploring the concepts of full, half full and empty. We have been using different sized bottles with coloured water to see how much we can fit in each one. We then discussed that you can measure capacity with all sort of objects, not just water so we started by modelling it using cubes. The children chose various containers and filled them up before counting how many cubes were in each. they then ordered the containers and recorded it using pens, paper and clipboards.
Reception went on a trip this week to St Georges Hall to watch ‘We’re Going on a Bear Hunt’. Once again the childrens behaviour was fantastic, they listened to the adults on the journey in the mini bus, lined up beautifully, participated in the show and were fantastic ambassadors for the school. They had great fun getting involved and have been re telling the story within the classroom.
The igloo is almost complete and due to the weight of so many bottles we have decided that it will not have a roof, for now and it has become a great book area. The children have loved going in and choosing a book to share with their friends.
In literacy we have been looking at fiction and non fiction books and the children had a go at making their own. there were some great examples, one of which was a mixture of Whatever Next and Elmer.
Homework came in this week and a huge number of children have tried really hard with the tasks. It is great to hear about the whole family getting involved in different tasks and the children were excited to come in to school, share their work and model to others how to do it. The Homework party will take place next Friday.
Banana bread was made by Mrs Ahmed and the children and they enjoyed it over two days for their snack.
Nursery have a new class animal that will be sent home weekly so watch out for it arriving home with your child. We can’t wait to read about all the adventures you get up to whilst he is staying at your house.
RE Day: Judaism – 22/01/2016
On Friday the whole school took part in an RE day. The focus for Early Years was Judaism so we started our day looking at what Judaism is and the symbols associated with it. For the rest of the day the children completed a range of tasks linked to Judaism.
Some children started by looking at the differences between Judaism and some religions they already knew about. They sorted the places of worship and talked about being different and then cut and stuck the pictures into the correct columns. We looked at the festival of Rosh Hashana which is a celebration of the new year that happens in September. During this time there are lots of traditions that take place including eating lots of delicious foods. We baked some Challah bread, which is a circle shape as well as an apple cake and we tasted apples and honey. The children made two different kinds of Menorah candles using hand prints and paintbrushes. We made stars from card and decorated them with glitter to represent the star of David. The children also made Rosh Hashana cards.
At the end of the day the children shared what they had been doing in assembly with the whole school. Everybody was involved and some children were confident enough to speak independently to the other children. It was a fantastic day and we learnt a lot.
Try and spend some time with your child discussing what they learnt, why not use the internet or go to the library and do some research about Judaism.
We have been so busy over the past couple of weeks. Here are a few of the things we have been doing.
In Reception we have been adding using all sorts of winter objects from animals and snowflakes to hats and gloves. The children are really getting involved with the topic and this week we have been looking at how water turns into ice. The children used a range of containers from biscuit packaging and bowls to gloves and balloons and filled them with water. They then placed them in the freezer to see what would happen. We placed a couple of containers in the fridge to see what would happen to them too. After just a few hours we checked on them and to our surprise the water in the freezer had already frozen! The children also observed that the water in the fridge was still water, it was just cold. We filled the water tray in the outside area with coloured water and left it for a couple of days. With such cold weather it soon froze over and the children have enjoyed using it as an Arctic setting for the animals. We then decided to freeze some more water but this time we decided to add colours and animals. The next problem will be to try and get the animals out. Do you have any ideas how we might do it?
We have been looking at the story of The Snowman and to help us to try and remember it we made a story map and sequenced the pictures. Can you remember what happened at the beginning of the story? How did the story end?
We were very lucky this week as some of the Year 4 children gave up their lunchtime to come and practise reading with the children. they spent time looking at the childrens reading books and questioning about them. The children in the unit really enjoyed working with the older children, what great role models.
Thank you to all the parents that attended the parent workshop this week. The focus was maths and therefore we had lots of number and shape activities being carried out in the classroom. Parents were asked to take photographs, using the ipods, of their children completing the tasks, I had great fun looking through them and there will be a display going up in the classroom so please come and look at it.
During the session parents were asked to complete WOW cards for their children. For the parents that could not attend, they have been sent home with your child. It is an opportunity to write down something that your children is really good at and then they can share it with the class. Write as many as you like and if you need any more see Miss Snowden or Miss Shaw.
This week was our first week as a new unit and the children were unbelievably calm and relaxed with it all. The children have been free flowing between both the classrooms and the outdoor spaces. They have loved playing with the bikes and scooters on the road track and are wearing the helmets when ‘driving’. It felt pretty cold after playing outside so we made some hot chocolate with the children to warm them up and put our gloves on the radiators, they were lovely and warm when it came to putting them back on.
The igloo in the Arctic role play area is beginning to take shape but we still need more bottles so please continue to send them in.
We have started researching the Arctic and the children have been learning about the weather and the different animals that live there.
All the children attended singing assembly this week and the nursery children were particularly well behaved and thoroughly enjoyed singing with Miss Fisher.
In celebration assembly Reception even got the Class of the week certificate for their mature and sensible attitudes to all the changes.
We have a parent workshop next week, Wednesday 13th January and it will be taking place in the new unit so why not come along and see what we get up to.