New Year, New Beginnings...

With an aptly named topic “New Beginnings”, the children have all settled back into the preschool routines beautifully after Christmas and New Year celebrations. We have welcomed five new children into the setting, and we have a new staff member, Kerry.

We reflected on what was a wonderful end to the year, thinking back to our Christmas party, which ended with a delicious Christmas Roast dinner and Father Christmas himself coming to visit us! Our Christmas Owls performance was so special, with all the children doing an absolutely amazing job!

New Beginnings allows us to explore many different concepts with the children, following their fascinations and discovering how we can extend their learning in creative ways utilising all the space available. This week we have been thinking about the year ahead, and the children all helped to create a collaborative calendar. Using the hall in a range of ways has been exciting for the children, and they have shown their wonderful risk benefit play through obstacle courses and team games. The children are articulating their thoughts, and displaying their confidence in their own abilities, trying out new activities with a real ‘can do’ attitude. Throughout this term we will be looking at animals, the world around us, and how things work. The children will have the opportunity to be chefs and story makers as well. Alongside this, we are focusing on a book “The Magic Porridge Pot” to allow the children to extend their understanding of stories and concepts explored. They will learn Makaton signs for the words, as well as turn their hand to creating their own books. We are all excited to see how the children shape this lovely way of learning through a story.

Forest school is truly magical this term, with the adventures taking us up to Mr. Owl’s tree. The children are encouraged to write letters to ‘Mr. Owl’, developing their fine motor skills whilst also thinking about questions they could ask about the natural world.

We had a lovely yoga parent workshop last year, and this year we are continuing to encourage families to share their child’s learning journey by putting together a phonics and fine motor skills workshop this month. We will be showcasing how everyday activities promote and develop children’s reading and writing skills. This will support children, and their families further on through their education adventures.

Countdown to Christmas!

With the countdown to Christmas well underway the pre-schoolers have been enjoying getting into character to practice our Christmas show, which this year is called “The Christmas Owls”. The owls are lost, and are trying to find Mary, Joseph and baby Jesus. Luckily, with a little help from their friends, they find their way! This lovely twist of a much loved story as well as incorporating the Nativity theme proves to be highly effective in engaging all the children and sparking their imaginations. We are looking forward to families and friends enjoying this performance.

Our outing to the Victoria Art Gallery was a huge success, with all the children having such a great time and being fantastic ambassadors for preschool. They took part in an “All about me” workshop, allowing them to create self portraits which they proudly showed all their friends after. There was also an opportunity to dress up as some people displayed around the gallery – including a lieutenant and Henry the 8th!

With a leaking roof in the preschool room, the children have shown their super resilience and adaptability, and are having a lovely time in the hall, exploring the space in so many different ways. They have enjoyed yoga, Zumba, obstacle courses, and the large construction blocks allowing for open ended play creating pathways, houses and dens! Outside, the children have created a construction area, which provides them a safe space to dig, whilst dressing up for the job – in hard hats, hi vis, using headphones and other resources to support their play.

Before the end of term, we are very excited to be joined by Music for Miniatures, who will perform “The Snowman” on the last week of term. We are also going to be treated to watching the dress rehearsal of Freshford School’s performance, before venturing out on our last outing of the year to St. Peter’s church, to experience bell ringing and discuss the gift of giving. What a fun filled few weeks for the children to enjoy before Christmas. On our return, we will be welcoming some new children to our preschool family, as well as following the children’s interests to explore, create and discover many new learning opportunities in fun ways the children can extend and adapt freely.