Early Years

Wagtail Watch, making apple juice from the orchard and dressing up

Wagtail Watch, making apple juice from the orchard and dressing up The summer term is a time for extended outdoor play opportunities but recently the quad has been suspiciously quiet. The discovery of wagtails nesting in the play boat was met with excitement, then concern! At first we thought we could play around the birds but we soon realised we were unintentionally disturbing them. However, this unexpected event had some wonderfully positive results.

The children waited, patiently, for the eggs to hatch. Mr Campbell carefully rigged up a wildlife camera giving the children a delightful insight into the secret life of these little wild birds. The children watched from the window for the birds to return with their beaks full of food, and not once did the children complain about not being able to go in the quad. Instead we ventured to the main playground, the yurt, the fort and the tepee. Toys were stored on the lower field and the children played beautifully - during some play sessions we did not get out any toys at all. Instead we set clear boundaries and just let the children play. They sang, danced, played chase, collected sticks, picked grass, rolled down hills and made up all sorts of games. It was a clear reminder of the importance of unstructured, undirected, child-led play.

I am delighted to say that due to the patience of our children, the wagtail chicks are thriving and are likely to fly from the nest any day. As we say farewell to our chicks we have also been saying goodbye to lots of our children as they move on from the department or move up from Nursery to Pre-School. In the final weeks of term the Nursery and Pre-School children were given the opportunity to recall some of their favourite memories. Many highlights featured hot chocolate and marshmallows but speaking to the children demonstrated how it is the everyday things that they treasure.

As I look back over the year, I think of all of the special events we have shared with you: ballet shows, nativity performances, our Harvest in the Woods and the Mother’s Day assembly. The art exhibition was a wonderful way to celebrate 50 years of Copthill School and our recent sports morning was a huge success. The children, however, recall the time they were line leader or when they made juice using apples picked from the orchard. They remembered caring for the tadpoles and chicks and meeting the piglets.

Their favourite things ranged from the dressing up clothes to playing in the sandpit. It quickly became apparent that every day in the department is special for our children. It may be the main events which stick in our minds, but for our children it is the happy memories of playing with their friends in a safe, secure and stimulating environment which they remember most. For those of you moving on from Early Years, I wish you well.

For those who are continuing with us we can look forward to another exciting year in the department, with the introduction of even more opportunities for our children. We will be trialling weekly foreign language activities as well as developing a gardening area. Finally, I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of the staff for their continued hard work and enthusiasm. I would also like to thank all of our parents for their continued support and all of the children for another wonderful year.

I wish you all a fun-filled summer break.

Mrs Fleming



Some of our tadpoles have turned into froglets and frogs and it was time to release them into the river.  We have been very interested over the past few weeks and have enjoyed watching them as they  have changed. We went along with some of our Pre-school friends today and listened very carefully so that we knew what to do.  We all sang 5 Little Speckled Frogs and said our goodbyes.



We have been very busy during the last two weeks. We welcomed Mr Sondh to the classroom who talked to the children about eyes and how to look after them and what happens if you go for an eye test. the children had a wonderful time playing with some special equipment which Mr Sondh kindly brought in. They also had a lot of fun trying on lots of different glasses. 

In RWI we have been looking at the b sound. We have been bird watching, painting pictures of birds and blowing lots of bubbles! The children loved making bubble pictures which will be displayed at our art exhibition in June.