Sep 24, 2021

Apricot Pre School September News: Families, Emotions and Shapes

Nursery child playing with baby doll

A warm welcome to all of our new parents and children who have joined us in September. It has been a lovely month getting to know all of the children, families, and new faces at the Preschool site. We look forward to building on our parent partnerships even more and hopefully a more normal school year ahead of us!

We have also welcomed some new members of staff into Preschool this month. Some of whom are continuing their careers and some whom are just starting their careers. A very warm welcome to everyone! Our rooms have the following staff within them:

Preschool 1 : Alex, Christine, Ellie and Leah

Preschool 2: Lauren, Jo, Chloe, Tora, Bethany, and Erin

September news

This month, the children in Preschool 1 have been busy getting to know each other and their new environment.

The children have been learning about each other and their families. They have been thinking about who lives at home with them and how they are related to them. The team challenged the children to think about how many rooms they have in their house, what things are in their home and if they have any pets. The children have been representing their families in portraits by drawing pictures of them, thinking about the different shapes and mark making.

This month at circle time, the team have been talking to the children about what they have enjoyed playing and doing at Preschool. The team have introduced voting, allowing the children to make as many choices as possible about their learning.

The children have also been learning about the Preschool rules, looking at their actions and how they affect others. The children have been playing group games, such as ‘What’s the time Mr. Wolf?’, ‘Hide and Seek’ and ‘The floor is lava’. These games help to develop the children’s turn taking, social interactions and counting skills.

Also this month, the team have been developing the children’s independence by creating challenges to wash and dress dollies, help apply their sun cream, putting their belongings on their pegs and getting ready for home time. The children have enjoyed this; it’s lovely to see their confidence growing as well as pride, as they complete the task in hand. Through this activity, the practitioners have been talking about how we take care of ourselves and how we ensure that the room is tidy and our belongings are safe.

In September, the children have been learning about and exploring shapes. The practitioners identified different shapes in the  environment and the children were able to tell the practitioners their knowledge about these shapes as well as the different shapes around them.  The children created their own collage of shapes using different resources, such as 3D shapes, wooden blocks and plastic puzzle shapes. The practitioners encouraged the children to paint and draw their shapes.

This month, the children have also been learning about the season changing into Autumn. They have been collecting leaves, making representations of leaves, looking at their shapes and conker rolling. The team will be extending this by learning about Harvest Festival in October.

The children have shown a keen interest in water play and the sea animals. One of the children saw a jelly fish at the beach so the team extended this, so that all of children were able to learn about jelly fish within the setting. The children then created sea animals using paints, tissue paper and paper plates.

In Preschool 2 this month, the children have enjoyed welcoming all of their new friends into the room. The children have adapted to their new environment so well and have started to create friendships with their peers.

The children have been getting to know the Preschool 2 room routine and thinking about the rules that we have in place. The children have been thinking about the different ways in which they can be kind to each other to ensure that everyone is happy, kind and considerate to each other. The team have extended this by talking about the rules by learning and how to regulate our emotions. We have been doing this through yoga, talking about how we feel and creating the faces of different emotions to each other in mirrors. The children have been watching the adults how to do different breathing techniques if they get angry. They have also been reading stories which explore different emotions.

In September, the children have also been making the most of the summer sunshine with lots of garden play and picnics. They have been thinking about how they stay safe in the sun; supporting each other in having their hats on and learning new language to describe when they are thirsty e.g. hydrating, hydrated, dehydrated etc…

The children have been enjoying playing and exploring the construction area. They have been working with their friends to dig, build and create different structures. By using a wide variety of ingredients and resources to create cement, the children worked together to mix the ingredients to support their play. Using experiences within their play, the children spoke about the things they need to keep them safe while working on a building site. The children sourced hard hats, hi-vis and different types of spoons to scoop, mix and dig with.

The children have also been speaking about what they do at home. We have had lots of children who have been baking with the special people in their life. To support this and to create a mathematical learning experience, the children have been busy creating different types of items such as cookies, cheese straws, cupcakes, pizza, and bread. The best bit of it all was eating what they had made!

The children looked at different numbers and counted together how many spoons they were putting in the mixing bowls. Following a recipe teaches children to follow a sequence, follow directions, builds confidence, think about cause and effect, and builds fine motor skills as well as eye-hand coordination.

This month, the children have shown a further interest in learning all about dinosaurs. To promote and develop this interest, the children have been looking at different fact books with the practitioners. They have been exploring the facts that they already know as well as finding out new information; which they have been able to relay back to the practitioners throughout different activities.

To support the children’s learning through play, the team created different challenges for the children. This included breaking dinosaurs free from the ‘Ice age’, capturing a certain number of dinosaurs (before they ate the practitioners – apparently dinosaurs love childcare practitioners!), creating moulds of their feet and bodies in playdough and clay.

What’s coming up next month

Next month, the children will be exploring and learning about what happens in Autumn and the changing of the seasons.

As the children have been enjoying singing songs about animals, creating stories using their small world animals, reading books about animals and talking about their favourite animal; as a nursery, we will be celebrating World Animal Day on the 4th of October so that we can expand on this interest even more.

Of course, October brings us one of our favourite events, Halloween. We will be having a Halloween week the week commencing the 25th October. We invite children to dress up on Friday 29th October. If your child is on half term or not in on this day, then they are welcome to wear a Halloween costume when they are in either before or after this day. We look forward to seeing all of their costumes!

Other important information

Half term will be for 1 week starting the week commencing the 25th October 2021. We have some availability if any extra sessions are needed.

Thank you all for your continued support and a great start to the term!

Home activity

If you are looking for something to do at home this weekend or over the coming weeks, why not give our activity at home a go!

This month, the children have been exploring their feelings. Why not try making different faces to each other or by looking in the mirror. Talk to your child about what makes you feel like that and ask what makes them feel like it.

At Preschool, we talk about 2 emotions, for example “We are happy because we are excited to be at Preschool”. By using language to express how you feel and by explaining why, you are role modelling to your child that it’s okay to feel different emotions and this broadens their understanding of different feelings and words.

To extend on this activity, why not practise drawing these faces. Colour the faces the colours that your child associates with the feeling for example, Yellow = happy, Blue = sad etc…

This activity supports your child’s:

  • Emotional development
  • Understanding of feelings
  • Communication with others
  • Motor skills
  • Colour recognition
  • Mark making skills

Louise Wright, Nursery Manager

Staff helping child play with building blocks
Nursery child playing with blocks
Nursery child reading
Nursery child baking
Nursery child playing with baby doll

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