Term 2 Newsletter – October 2020
We would like to say a huge welcome back, and thank you for your patience and understanding through the last few challenging months. The children have all been amazing and shown great resilience to life. We should all take a leaf out of their books.
It is now Autumn already!
As most of you will be aware, Rosie had her bouncing baby girl on May 30th 2020. Isobel weighed in at 7.8 pounds and was born at 2.47am. Rosie is getting on great, as is Isobel.
Krista Wilkin from the 3-5 room sadly had her last day on 30th September. Krista has gained a well-deserved promotion to become a Room Leader, just sadly it wasn’t within Summers.
Rebecca (Becca) Bruce has started within the 2- 3 room, alongside Joanne. Becca is qualified and will be working Tuesday – Friday. Becca has come from Bright Horizon’s nursery and has 6 years of childcare experience. I am sure you will all join us in welcoming Becca to our team.
Adele Mortimer has moved back into the pre-school room from our 2-3 room, and will now be doing Krista’s hours.
Melanie and Lauren have both been accepted for their Level 4 Childcare Learning and Development courses. They have made a good start towards this already.
Charity of the Year 2020
For 2020, we have decided to support Charlie House, which is a local children’s charity supporting babies, children and young people with complex disabilities and life limiting conditions in the North East of Scotland. For more information, their website is https://www.charliehouse.org.uk/
The children really enjoyed taking part in our crazy cone fundraiser in the garden, week commencing the 14th September. Each room made their own obstacle courses for the children within their room, and everyone had the opportunity to take part. We are overwhelmed at raising £555. Thank you so much for your generosity.
Please e mail or phone if you have any questions, and we welcome any ideas/suggestions you may have in regards to your child’s room.
We encourage you to check your child’s interactive learning diary (ILD) for updated photos and observations, which will give you an insight into your child’s progress and learning. Parents can also contribute to the ILD, allowing staff to see what they have been doing at home.
We are working towards our new Improvement plans that will run from September 2020 – August 2021. Our new Improvements plans are as follows:-
- Support Children and Staff - Health and Wellbeing.
- Develop the use of more natural resources inside, as well as taking the indoors, outside.
- Develop staff knowledge on frameworks and continue to write quality observations, upping the use of our ILD for home-nursery links.
Room activities and learning
When we returned in July, we started a new topic, ‘Under the sea’. During this topic, the children painted their own jelly fish pictures which we proudly hung up on our display wall. They also designed their own star fish pictures using bubble wrap with paint to make a dotted effect. The children then used forks to spread the paint around to design their puffer fish pictures.
In the sensory tray, the children showed good sharing skills when using the spades and managed to dig for shells - they had sand, shells and stones within the tray. As well as sand, the children did some transient art with the fish, shells and tissue paper. Transient art helps the children use their imaginations to create their own pictures using natural resources.
While out in the garden, we had the water tray out, with the fish, seaweed, sea creatures and pots – the children loved splashing in the water outside. The boys and girls used their gross motor skills, catching the fish using the fishing nets, showing good co-ordination.
Our next topic was ‘Transport’. This was explored due to some of the children shouting “Tractor” every time they saw one passing the window, with everyone expressing great excitement! For this, the children enjoyed painting their own tractor and digger pictures.
Children used fantastic fine motor skills making up sensory bags, and they enjoyed moving paint around to reveal a picture, as well as doing a great job peeling off the stickers and putting them on their pictures. They also made rockets using glue and stick materials, and transport stampers.
The boys and girls enjoyed reading a story about a helicopter and they decorated helicopter pictures using the pens. The children also made their own road using the cars to paint tracks across the paper. This proved to be a big hit, so the girls then decided to made their own road on the floor, and the boys and girls took the small world cars and pushed them around the road, showing great concentration as well as following the lines.
There was a lot of discussion about different modes of transport. One of our ladies has a horse, so she showed the children photos of a saddle which would be used to sit in and allow people to move around on the horse. From this, the children then made their own ‘saddle’ from cardboard boxes and enjoyed sitting on it, using their role play skills.
The parachute was taken out into the garden, and we imagined it was a hot air balloon, with the children getting excited when running and hiding underneath.
The babies have now moved onto looking at ‘Seasons’.
When we returned to nursery, we learnt all about Minibeasts. The children enjoyed a bug hunt in the garden, managing to find a spider, ladybird and worm. We discussed where we found them, where they live, and how big they were. When inside, we made our own spiders from our handprints, as well as googly eyes and paper plate lady birds, counting the spots each one had.
In the messy tray, there was hair gel with creepy crawlies hidden inside for the children to find. The children hand/finger painted various mini beast pictures. They also made their own caterpillars by sticking different circles onto paper, with lollipop sticks as the legs We also made a spider’s web tough tray with string and creepy crawlies.
We moved onto a short topic of ‘We are going on a Bear hunt’, as the 2-3’s really enjoy the story and ask for it every day. Over the next few days, we explored a different part of the story each day. In the sensory tray we had frozen ice, mud, water and AstroTurf. This allowed the children to explore the different textures and use their senses when playing. We turned the house corner into a ‘cave’ and we made bear masks which the boys and girls loved wearing, hiding in the cave, giving out the odd roar when anyone went passed!
We have now moved onto looking at Autumn with all its glorious changes, asking children to look out for the changing colours of the leaves.
We have settled in so well since our return, getting stuck into having fun, socialising, and of course, learning. We have taken part in virtual Show and Tell, which has been a great success, and a great way of strengthening the link between nursery and home during these strange times.
We have been extremely busy and have covered three topics since August. Transport, All around the World and Space – Space by far has been the firm favourite with the children and the ladies.
During our Transport topic, we explored everything from engines, land vehicles with wheels, ships, and large creatures of the sky! The children particularly enjoyed designing the big vehicles for the topic wall, as well as racing the different cars. We also painted with wheels, made a role play fire station and airport, and the children participated in lots of different arts and crafts. We spent a lot of time discussing road safety – how to cross roads, holding hands with an adult, and how traffic lights and zebra crossings work.
We moved onto ‘Around the world’ next, which was great for the children, with them learning new cultures, festivals, flags and the traditional foods. We made a wall display with the different flags for each country. For each topic, the children make mind maps of what they would like to learn and what they did learn, which we also display.
When learning about France, we made our own Eiffel tower – children demonstrated great team work when using the various materials. When learning about Scotland, the children created their own thistles and highland cows, and made their own fans when learning about China.
When learning about ‘Around the world’, the children were interested in planets, learning that we live on planet Earth. After investigating the different planets, everyone gained lots of new facts. The children were very able to absorb and repeat new information. A firm favourite was learning the space song, which taught us the names and order of the planets.
For our wall display, we made our own mini planets, with aliens, astronauts and rockets to go around them. We explored the texture of our own homemade slime, using soap, and we also made some moon dough. The children really enjoyed doing a science experiment with a bottle of cola and a mint mento which created a volcano affect. Space definitely proved to be an interesting, factual and favourite project, for sure!
We have recently moved onto ‘Autumn’. If you have any ideas then please pass these on to the girls, we would love to hear them. You can either e mail or use the ILD.
Alongside our topics, we still do activities which are not topic related. Recently, everyone made their own height charts, after a discussion between children about how tall they were. We have also been incorporating more natural resources inside – creating a forest themed sensory area, an outdoor family wall and a natural tree birthday chart. The children have also been interested in name writing and numbers, so we created individual packs for them to practice their names, letters, numbers and shapes.
During this term we have also been busy outdoors – creating dens, making ‘campfires’ as well as getting creative with loose parts. We also had a fantastic time taking part in our crazy cone week, with everyone showing great enthusiasm.
Important Dates for you Diary
- Halloween Party – Will be held on Friday 30th October for the children in that day, and children are more than welcome to dress up in their costumes throughout week commencing the 26th on the days they attend.
- Christmas Party Week– This year we are thinking of hosting a Christmas themed week, where we will do party games and various activities which will include all the children who are in nursery on different days. More information will be issued nearer the time
- Christmas Closure – We close at 6pm on Friday 18th December and re open at 7.30 am on Monday 4th January 2021