Early Years

Rambling, wrapping, playing and exploring

During the last few weeks of term, the classrooms were filled with lots of festive cheer as the magic of Christmas filled the air for our youngest children. Requests were drawn for Father Christmas and the children mixed wishes into reindeer food ready to sprinkle onto their lawns on Christmas Eve. Elves of varying sizes were hidden around the rooms for the children to spot and count and the role play area was transformed into a Christmas Post Office. The children loved writing cards, wrapping parcels and spotting patterns on the paper. However, I am not quite sure whether the children are quite ready to help with the wrapping of real presents at home as we had some very sticky sellotape moments and the finished parcels were often rather unique! The post box was filled with numbered envelopes to sequence and sort and the play trays were filled with pretend trees to decorate. Some very special decorations were made at Forest School and every child was given a special gift of a little Christmas tree. We hope these will be planted in gardens at home, continuing to grow as our children grow. Looking back over the term, the children have created some wonderful memories with lots of outdoor learning from blackberry picking to bow sawing. At Forest School the children have pressed apples to make juice and explored the trenches as we learnt about Remembrance Day. The Early Years’ garden saw a super harvest of pumpkins and squash which we were able to open up and explore in the classroom. The children took great care to collect the seeds, counting them and creating shapes with them, as well as saving some to plant next year. Spring bulbs have also been planted and we look forward to spotting them as they appear next year adding a splash of spring colour to our garden area. As part of our ‘Home Sweet Home’ topic, we searched the Copthill grounds for different types of buildings, trying to find a house made of straw, sticks and bricks to link to the story of ‘The Three Little Pigs’. The children were very excited as we started our searches and we were fortunate enough to find everything we were looking for, along with lots of real pigs, goats, alpacas, donkeys and sheep! We were all quite relieved not to find a real wolf and learnt how to play ‘What’s the Time Mr Wolf?’ instead. Being able to bring these stories to life in the Copthill grounds is such a wonderful experience for the children, and also rather good fun for us adults too! Another ‘Home Sweet Home’ activity enjoyed by the children this term was cardboard box building. The children showed so much enthusiasm as they created houses, rockets and anything they could think of to sit in and crawl through! The endless ideas and creativity showed how it is not the expensive pre-designed toys which ignite the imagination the most but an empty box and the invitation to create anything. The big build week also allowed for the children to learn shape names and features through play, as well as develop team building and turn-taking skills. The topic also allowed the children to talk about their home and families and we used this opportunity to promote healthy choices. All of the children were reminded of the importance of cleaning their teeth and everyone was given some toothpaste and a new toothbrush to take home. The Children in Need rambles were also a huge success and undertaken throughout the week in Early Years to ensure all children were involved. The children made some very special spotty Pudsey headbands and explored the woods, track and fields whilst spotting seasonal changes and raising money for this wonderful cause. More recently, we were delighted to be able to welcome parents back into the setting for our consultation evenings and to watch our festive celebrations. The children entertained us all with their lively action songs as well as their simple recreation of the Nativity. Thank-you to everyone who came along and joined in and apologies if you find yourself humming ‘Oh What a Special Night’ for weeks to come! As the term comes to an end, we have lots to look forward to. Pre-School will be starting their Read Write Inc. sessions in January and we will be welcoming some new families to the setting. We will be continuing with our extended Forest School mornings as the children have all enjoyed having their lunches as part of their session. We are hoping to be able to invite some visitors into the setting as we explore the topic ‘Helping Hands’ by thinking about how we can help others and how people help us. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of our families for their support during this term as well as the Early Years team who have continued to work with enthusiasm during challenging times, providing the children with a safe and stimulating learning environment. I hope you all have a very happy and healthy Christmas break and I look forward to seeing you all again in the new year.

Mrs Fleming

Early Years Nativity


Our Christmas Celebration!

Although the wet weather meant we had to perform inside rather than outside in the fort as planned the children still had a wonderful time performing their festive songs.


Wooden Decorations

The Nursery and Pre School children have been very busy creating lovely wooden Christmas decorations.