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This week in Nursery
Nursery’s Chinese New Year Celebrations



The children thoroughly enjoyed our Chinese New Year topic, and were very excited for our recent Chinese New Year celebration event!
We have spent lots of time talking about the traditions of Chinese people in preparation for the New Year, and they have transferred this knowledge to their play, including in the Chinese home corner, where they have cleaned in preparation for the Kitchen God’s visit and enjoyed delicious Chinese meals. The children can now talk independently about multiple Chinese New Year traditions.




The children prepared for the Chinese New Year by making Chinese lanterns and adding Chinese writing to their lucky red envelopes, which the children received on our celebration day. The children also decorated table cloths for their Chinese banquet, and made their very own dragon, complete with a ferocious face and 15 pairs of feet!

On the day the children enjoyed a delicious Chinese banquet where they tried different Chinese foods including sweet and sour stir-fry and spring rolls, and they all also tried to eat using chop sticks – which they found to be much trickier than expected!

Afterwards, the children treated their families to a wonderful performance of dragon dancing, scarf dancing and a lions and dragons mask game. To close the celebrations, the children performed two songs they had learnt especially for the occasion, one of which they sang in Chinese. The children thoroughly enjoyed the celebrations and should be very proud of their fantastic performance.


Ball Rolling

The children have spent lots of time independently building obstacle courses with the plastic guttering and stands, finding out how and where the ball would travel. One child suggested they add water to the course, to see whether the ball or water would travel fastest, which led to all of the children making predictions about would would happen.

This has been a great opportunity for the children to develop and test their own ideas, to plan how to achieve their goal and to amend their approach when it did not work as they had hoped it would. As well as finding out, the children have participated in lots of team work and cooperative play.

Nursery’s Delaunay geometric pictures

We introduced the children to the work of the artists Mrs Sonia Delaunay and Mr Robert Delaunay, as a way for the children to explore shape, size and colour. During focused activity time the children produced these wonderful, eye catching geometric pictures. They really enjoyed the process and lots of interesting discussions about size and shape came about! The children then continued to explore shape, size and colour independently, with a group of children collaborating to create their own collage of shapes.

  

More so, the children have gone on to paint excellent Delaunay inspired circles, in which they have demonstrated great brush control and understanding. This also extended to independent mark making, where the children have used the pens and pencils to create their own geometric pictures, telling us “Look at my Delaunay picture!”

 
It has been a busy start to the Spring term!

We have had new children join us, and with the help of the older children they are settling into Nursery really nicely. Here are some of the things the children have been busy doing:

The Nursery Nativity

We were so proud of the children for their performance of The Nativity Story! We don’t start rehearsing for the Nativity until the middle of November, so the children have many songs, actions and lines to learn in just a short amount of time. On top of this there is the general upheaval, distraction and excitement of Christmas, and a very busy and long half term for the children to contend with, so we were completely blown away by their level of enthusiasm.

The children really got into character and often improvised their lines, bringing such a personal touch to the performance. They had lots of fun learning the actions to the songs and loved getting into their costumes for the dress rehearsal and performance.

We hope you enjoyed the performance as much as we and the children did!
After a busy morning, the children then walked down to St Mary’s church to take park in our whole school church service. Again, the children showed great enthusiasm and excellent listening skills, following instructions and directions very well. The children commented that they really enjoyed performing their songs in the church, and it’s a wonderful opportunity for them to take park in a whole school and community wide event.

Thank you to all of the parents for your support; from providing tights and learning songs and lines, to supporting us on the day by getting the children ready and attending the performances.

Yoga

This week, some of the children tried baby yoga, and they absolutely loved it! The children watched the instructor on the screen, listened carefully to instructions, and followed the actions carefully. They showed great skill in being able to balance, and they really pushed themselves to move into the different positions, and hold them steady. The children worked at yoga for 20 minutes and were very excited about trying it again!
There are many benefits to children participating in a yoga session:
• It helps to develop body awareness
• Children learn how to use and listen to their bodies
• It is an engaging way for children to listen and follow instructions – important skills for communicating!
• It can have a very calming effect
• It helps to build concentration
• It can increase children’s confidence
• And helps them to feel part of a healthy, non-competitive group

Shape detectives!

The children have expressed a great interest in shape this half term, and they have been learning all about basic shapes including circles, squares, triangles and rectangles. With help from an adult, the children have played shape snap, found shapes in our Nursery environment and talked about shape using mathematical vocabulary. Independently the children have organised, sorted and categorised shapes, created images and models using different resources and turned themselves into human shapes. They also invented their own game – ‘Hide the Shape’ and for weeks they have taken it in turns hiding the 2D shapes around the Nursery, then working as a team to find and identify them. Well done Nursery children!

Diwali.

The children thoroughly enjoyed our Nursery Diwali celebration event at the end of last half term. After learning about Diwali, the children helped to prepare a vegetarian curry, coconut barfi and we made our own banana lassi to drink, which was delicious! The children enjoyed learning about the Diwali festival and had many animated discussions about how the festival is celebrated. In the afternoon the children joined in with traditional dances, made beautiful mehndi patterns and large pretty Rangoli designs with chalk. As part of the preparations for Diwali, the children each made their own Dival lamp using red salt dough and glitter to decorate. We lit some of the Diva lamps and placed them around the classroom as we sat down to enjoy an Indian banquet together, to celebrate the Festival of Lights.

It has been a brilliant half term and the children have really made the most of their time in Nursery. The children have made new friends, told us lots about their life and families, explored Autumn, created incredible constructions, shared stories, made beautiful pictures, supported each other, climbed and chased, built dinosaur houses, developed their maths skills with teddy’s and pumpkins and worked together, to name but a few!
The children enjoyed exploring autumn and we talked lots about the changes we were seeing in our environment. On autumn walks they collected beautiful leaves, twigs and seeds, and we watched a squirrel collect and bury its acorns in the school grounds. They children brought everything we had collected back to the classroom and organised everything into different baskets ready for our autumn workshop where they made beautiful seasonal collages.
The children we so excited to share everything they have learnt about harvest at our harvest tea, including singing their harvest songs. In preparation for the event the children harvested the Nursery garden and gathered apples from the orchard, they chopped the vegetables up and made soup and cake, and they made beautiful table cloths from leaf and apple printing. Thank you to all of the families who were able to join us for our Harvest Tea!

Conkers!

We have been bonkers for conkers in Nursery this week. We have explored and discussed the appearance and texture of a conker, we have looked at capacity – exploring how many conkers we can fit into a container, we have counted conkers and created beautiful marks and colours through conker rolling with paint.

Autumn

The children had started to notice seasonal changes in the environment and have been bringing in the autumn discoveries they have made on their way to Nursery.

We then went for our own autumn walk to see what we could find in the school environment. The children made excellent discoveries and were excited to collected leaves, acorns, lime seeds and crab apples! After collecting lots of lovely things, the children spent time organising and sorting the items into different baskets, ready for our autumn workshop!

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