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Term 3 Newsletter

Term 3 Newsletter - February 2018


Dear Parents/Carers


Welcome to all our new families who have recently joined us at the nursery. We have had lots of babies join us for the start of 2018 and they are all settling in well.


No doubt 2018 will be another busy year with lots of topics, trips and events to look forward to.


We would like to thank parents for their generosity over December. Staff were given many gifts from parents, all of which were greatly appreciated!


Staffing

We have continued to enjoy the company of Rachel who is studying for her National Certificate in Childcare at Gallowgate College. Rachel has been learning about planning and observing. 


We also have a few relief staff, most are students with an interest in education and/or care. We have a selection of student teachers, nurses and social science students.


Staff Training

Staff have taken part in some core training since coming back from the Christmas break, including First Aid, Infection Control and Food Hygiene.

 

Training is selected for staff in accordance with:


  • Staff need for core training
  • Staff identified developments
  • Staff particular interests   


Kirsty Watson and Hazel McPherson (Nee Stein) have both embarked on a BA in Childhood Practices at Aberdeen University this semester, so very well done to them!. Karina Stebanovska will also be starting her SCQF Level 7 in Social Services, Children and Young People this month. We wish all the girls good luck throughout their studies.


Staff are required to attend a maximum of 50 hours training over a 5 year period to remain registered with The Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC), and they record this through their detailed Continuous Professional Development (CPD) files.


Unexpected Absence

In the event of your child being absent unexpectedly from nursery, please ensure that you contact the nursery prior to the session, or at the latest by 10.00am for morning sessions or 2.00pm for an afternoon session. This saves staff having to call you each day to see if your child is attending. It allows for the preparation of food, staffing and outings.


Information evening

We will be holding a Curriculum for Excellence evening on Thursday 22nd February at 6:15pm for all parents of ante-preschool children, and we are extending the invitation to any parents of children who will be three years old by 28th February 2019. Our Curriculum evening provides information about children's learning experiences, as well as information regarding funding.


Birthday Cakes

Please note that a birthday cake can be provided to the nursery but must be sealed in its shop box with the ingredients printed on it. We are encouraging healthy eating so we would be happy to make cakes with your child and celebrate their birthday in the nursery as an alternative.


Charity

Victoria Street raised a whopping £1759.70 for Barnardo's this year, adding to the grand total of £8064.74 donated to Barnardo's by Summers Nurseries throughout 2017. This is our most successful year for charity so far, and the highest amount we have ever raised for one charity, so long may this continue as we go on to support 'Befriend a Child' throughout 2018.


'Befriend a Child' is a local charity, who's motto is 'turn a frown upside down'. They support school-aged children from 4 years – 16 years old who have come from troubled and disadvantaged backgrounds in Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire. Children have had less attention and/or opportunity in their lives so far for a variety of reasons including addiction, the death of a parent, a disabled peer and much more. The charity develops opportunities for children who are affected by any of those circumstances to have escapism and build improved childhood memories.  www.befriendachild.org.uk   


We have several ideas up their sleeves for raising funds throughout the year, but as always this will include our annual sports day at Westburn Park, as well as another Saturday family event.


Policies of the term

Our policies of the term this term are;

  • Policy 3 – Open Access to information
  • Policy 11 – Unexpected Absences and
  • Policy 27- Conduct Policy for Visiting Professionals

These policies are displayed at the front door for parents to view.


Weather

Please make sure your child has weather appropriate clothing at all times. All children should have indoor and outdoor shoes. Clothing should be clearly named to ensure items are always returned to their rightful owners.


Facebook

Keep an eye on our Facebook page for all up to date information, including menus, daily activities, 'show and tell' dates and much more.  You can find us at Summers Victoria Street.





Development Plans


Plan 1

We are really pleased that (with after a second push of re-issuing letters), all parents have now signed up to use the Interactive Learning Diary (ILD). We have been adding the some daily activities, which we will continue to develop. We will continue to identify children's next steps on the ILD, giving parents the opportunity to work on these at home, too, if they wish to.  


Plan two

We have been encouraging more and more heuristic play. Kirsty bought some lovely natural materials for the Baby room sand tray. These materials were natural, realistic kitchen utensils and have proven very popular. Children in the other rooms have continued to use natural materials that develop open ended, imaginative play.


Tax Free Childcare

Summers Nurseries are now signed up to receive Tax Free Childcare Vouchers, so when looking, please select Summers Nursery at Victoria Street as provider, as we share an account.

www.childcarechoices.gov.uk  www.childcarevouchers.co.uk/Documents/CCV_whatshappening_2017.pdf


Change of Personal Details

Please remember to keep your child's details up to date, including change of address, phone numbers, medical details etc. forms are available in the office if you need to make a change. We will continue to update details biannually.


Illness

Information will be displayed on the front door advising parents of actual confirmed/suspected infectious illness if present in the nursery, so please read details. Please inform us of any illness your child has, and follow the required exclusion period. We still have children absent with chicken pox at the present time!


Trips/ Visits

Angela from Abricabeats continues to attend every week. She currently comes on a Wednesday morning. Angela encourages creativity through dance and drama. By choosing a Star of the Week, this gives children have a sense of achievement and also inclusion. Some children can be shy to start with, but most are keen to work hard to be chosen to become Angela's Star of the Week..


Our own Wee Green Space is still a weekly event, and increasingly popular! Children love the freedom of exploring the area, as well as doing activities with natural materials. The hot chocolate is also popular of course. Outdoor play is imperative for children, and we have been encouraged to develop a variety of outdoor play activities, which includes numeracy and literacy, and as stated in the Nursery World mangazine, the Scottish Government are recognising the importance of outdoor play, stating - " It is imperative that the outdoor environment remains a place of relative freedom – to explore, contemplate, cogitate, express and engage if/when desired – and that the learning which emerges from these experiences has parity of value and status with more formal activities."

Nursery World, April 2017.




Learning Experiences

We have been enjoying lots of winter play this term, learning about the changes in our environment. We have also celebrated Robert Burns by trying some Haggis, Neaps and Tatties.


0-2 room

The 0-2 room have continued to learn about winter. They had lots of different shaped ice cubes, including square blocks and even hand shapes. The children were able to explore the smooth, cold textures and watch the ice as it melted.


As always, the babies have enjoyed using the small wooden blocks. Children were encouraged to develop their hand-eye coordination by balancing the blocks on top of each other. Building towers shows good fine motor skills and control.


The babies have enjoyed imaginative play with the cars and garage, the pirate ships and the baby dolls. Children have proven to be caring and considerate towards the dolls, knowing how to feed them and clean them. Role play encourages imagination and allows children to act out what they have already seen from significant adults in their lives.


The babies really enjoyed playing with the shredded paper. Babies just love throwing it up into the air and watch it landing on the heads of their peers, which causes great hilarity.


There have been arts and crafts activities, with the use of different materials. Several pieces of art work are scattered around the room for you all to have a look at, always ensuring the room is vibrant and stimulating. Children have a sense of achievement, seeing their work being displayed for all to see.


The babies focused on 'love' this month, doing lots of activities to suit Valentine's Day.


2-3 room

The two's room have enjoyed a variety of messy activities, including gloop, shaving foam and paints.

Children are able to explore the textures and develop a good variety of descriptive language as they describe their experiences.

We have enjoyed making some hand print thistles for Robert Burns day, as well as doing some fantastic Scottish country dancing. The dances developed listening skills, as children followed instructions throughout. This also encourages children to work cooperatively as they dance in pairs, not to mention the benefits to gross motor skills.


The two's room are currently learning about families, including pets. Children love to be able to talk about their own families at nursery and it's really nice to build a connection between home and nursery.


3-5 room

We enjoyed some learning about Scotland for Robert Burns day. Children enjoyed the haggis, neaps and tatties for lunch and also looked at some poetry. They were asked to take in something Scottish for 'show and tell'. 'Show and Tell' is priceless, giving children the chance to talk about their object, as well getting the chance to ask others questions. The activity is a huge confidence builder, particularly for the children who have recently joined the room.


The pre-school room enjoyed a role play 'wedding' this term. Children were aware of weddings as Hazel was getting married this month. We therefore had our very own 'wedding' in the pre-school room. It was very authentic with all the major roles being filled, including a bridesmaid, flower girl, photographer, best man and of course a bride and groom. The children had a ball, not just being part of the 'wedding', but planning it. Vows were written and the register signed, which encouraged the understanding that literacy has a meaning. It also proved to be a day of very established role play, where children were able to share their own experiences and adopt those of others.


We have continued to discuss our own experiences, learning about babies. Some of the children have an outstanding knowledge of what children want and/or need. The staff played the sound of a baby crying on the iPad and children spent time working out what the baby needed, including changing, feeding or a sleep. The children learnt a lot about basic needs, but also about caring for others. Children are able to be considerate and empathetic towards others by understanding what each person needs. We have lots of children who have just become big brothers or sisters, or are just about to. Learning about the needs of babies will help fully prepare them for this.





Kind regards


Claire Drennan


Nursery Manager

01224 209966


stswithinstreet@summersnurseries.com


www.summersnurseries.com