Festive news

We have been creating various Christmas goodies for our lovely families. We hope you enjoy what your clever children have decorated and made for you. Here are a few pictures of the children putting their artistic talents to use.

Butterflies and Ladybirds performed their nativities ‘We’re going on a Star hunt’. Recalling and repeating a Christmas journey. Bumblebees celebrated together with their Christmas parties on Tuesday 14th and Wednesday 15th December.

We all enjoyed a lovely Christmas lunch on Wednesday 22nd December. A full roast dinner with vegan chocolate cake and squirty cream. We had homemade Carrot soup, rolls with mince pie swirls

 

Ladybird & Butterflies Room news

In the moment Planning

 

We have changed the way we observe and plan for the children. We do not plan for the children. We allow the children to explore their surroundings and decide what they would like to get out, play with and explore. We support them by pondering what if… what do you think….? What do you need…? We  extend their learning and activities with different suggestions, areas and resources. Through our extensions and conversations, the children should in theory reach what would have been their next step. It needs to be achievable, but through trial and error, revisiting the activity and extensions they accomplish what they didn’t / couldn’t do when they first started the activity or game. We have a certain number of resources in the tray (i.e. 8 cars) if the children have used these in their game and need more, we ‘restock’ them and add more. As the children are getting out what they would like they need to put it away before getting something else out or going to a different area. We are transitioning more towards natural resources, everyday objects, using our imagination more to create, build and invent. Don’t have a farmhouse when you can build one. Have the animals to go on the farm.

If you can build it yourself then do so.

This encompasses culture capital, life skills, a can-do attitude. The children clean their own mats after mealtimes, put their bottles away and wipe the tables, we clean the floor and support them with what they are doing. Dressing up, we are changing this to everyday clothes and items, the skills and knowledge which come from these. A walking stick, buttons on a shirt, why wear flippers? Where is your imagination going to lead on from these? From imagination to sharing experiences. Have a look at our list of ideas and items.

Focus groups and Tapestry

To enable us to spend more time with the children, we are doing focus groups. We have groups of focus children each week. This is 10% of the group size. For instance, we have about 38 children in Butterflies and Ladybirds together, so we will look at 4 children each week. This group will change every week, and at the end of 10 weeks it will start again. We will carry out focus observations on those children’s interests and abilities. All other children will have WOW observations during those weeks. These WOW moments are times when a child tells us, shows us or we ourselves see them doing something that is WOW, an achievement, something that we/they are proud of. This allows us time to spend with the children, extending their activities and learning within the child led environment. We follow their lead and interests and add ideas and suggestions. No questions. Simply – I wonder…., what if we …., do you need… You will be able to see these observations on Tapestry and add information to your child’s all about me section. We are looking at using the Care diary in the New Year on Tapestry once we have set it up, we will keep you updated on this. Please comment on observations or WOW moments, add ‘home observations’ on Tapestry, activities your child may do, achievements, outings they may go on with the photographs. Please activate your Tapestry accounts. If your child is starting with us in the new year, we will add their picture to the account then.

Colours

We have redecorated the rooms in a neutral colour, with hessian boards. This allows the furniture and resources to pop out, the surroundings aren’t so busy and children can concentrate more on what they are doing or what they want to do. This also provides a calmer environment for the children. They have started playing differently, the noise the children make is different, they are busier, more involved, there’s more communication, sharing ideas, exploring theories. So far, we have decorated Butterflies and Ladybird

 

Creativity

We are creating a dough station, recipes as guidelines for children to access ingredients, resources and measure them out themselves, alongside their peers and staff can support if / when needed. It is all accessible when they would like to do it. Sand and water will be accessible at all times, along with mark making and creative activities. Children can look through the art units and decide what paper, materials, paint, glue, add-ons etc they would like to use at that time. The activities aren’t chosen for them. Accessible cornflour, sawdust, hay, flour etc

Surroundings

We are changing our environments to everyday objects, sideboards, typewriters, old style telephones, scales, natural shelving (such as crates or tyres), pallets for specific areas such as a stage, construction areas. We are looking at removing chairs and later on tables so the children can access an area and play and explore on the floor. Tables and chairs can be put out for mealtimes. Rolling snack, we let the children know snack is ready and children can choose if they want snack at that time or in a little bit. They may be in the middle of a game. As time goes on, we remind them about snack and they can go back to what they are doing after. Children use lot of self-help skills, finding their placemats, drinking bottle, a place, got to the toilet / wash their hands, choose and serve their snack.

Garden

We are planning for a permanent solid cover over the climbing frame section of the downstairs part of the garden so it will always be dry. This will enable this area to be a constant open room which extends from inside the nursery. We are hoping to extend our garden to the second drainage gully in the car park. We haven’t got a set design, but we have a few ideas up our sleeve.

 

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to everyone