Preschool Blog

Welcome to our pre-school blog.
Scroll down to find out in more detail the things we have been learning and see some photos past and present.
Monday 11th May 2020
It's virtual Health Week! 
Here's some reminders of how we keep ourselves healthy and some activity ideas. 
Please keep in touch. We love to hear about the children's home learning and it would be great to see some photos too. You can email us at this address: nursery@shirley.cambs.sch.uk
Have fun :)  
Monday 4th May 2020 
Below is a short message from Mrs Pickering, on behalf of all of the pre-school staff. 
Please keep in touch and let us know how you've been keeping busy. It would be great to see some photos too! You can email us at: 
nursery@shirley.cambs.sch.uk
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Thursday 2nd July 2020
 
Hello everyone.
A little update on activities we have been doing in Pre-school this week. The children had lots of fun going on a scavenger hunt at our school field. They took clipboards with a data collection sheet attached to them, and explored the environment looking for leaves, twigs, flowers, and lots of other natural objects. They then recorded their findings by putting a tick in the box next to the correct picture.  
 
Thursday 25th June 2020
 
Hello everyone. 
What a week we have had in Pre-school! Continuing with our pirates topic, we had a go at making pirate ships from junk modelling, and then put our boats in the water to see if they would float or sink. During our trip to the field we played a game, pretending to be pirates looking for treasure in the sea and also trying to avoid the sharks while we did. We were very successful and luckily none of us got eaten and we managed to bring a good haul of treasure back to the ship!   
Thursday 18th June 2020
 
Hello everyone.
 
The topic we are doing in Pre-school this half term is Pirates! The children have been really busy doing lots of craft activities. They made pirate hats, moustaches and eye patches and pictures of parrots. They also learnt how to speak in pirate language and then received Pirate certificates which they were really proud of. Have a look at the photos to see the results. 
Monday 15th June 2020
 
Our rhyme of the week is
 
'Five Little Pirates' enjoy practising it at home!
Friday 12th June 2020 
 
Hello everyone
 
We hope you are all safe and well.
A big welcome back to some of our Pre-school children who joined us again this week. We have a had a nice time settling back in and seeing our friends. Some of the activities we have been doing, included a trip to the field, where we had fun blowing bubbles and rolling down the hill which had very long grass! We also got messy doing some hand print, virtual hug posters from Royal Mail and reminded ourselves about hand washing, sharing and taking turns.
Monday 8th June 2020
 
Hello Pre-school Families. 
 
We hope you are all safe and well. We have some more activities for you to do from our Home Learning Page. This one from Royal Mail is all about giving virtual hugs! You can choose a poster to make to give to someone that is special to you and there are different ones to choose from.
Here is the link to the website thttps://www.royalmail.com/sending/sendaletter/how-to
  We have put up some photos of the posters for you to see. Have fun making them!
Friday 22nd May 2020
 
Hello everyone
 
Thank you to all the photos of the children you have been sending in. It is great for them to see their friends, and all the activities they have been doing during this time. You really have found some creative ways to keep busy! Please carry on using our Home learning page, there are so many activities to do. Here are some more links.
Try some home growing with this link to growing beans in a bag!
 
Have a go at some guided dances on the Go Noodle website!
 
A lovely message from Father Christmas!
Friday 15th May 2020
 
Hello everyone,
 
I hope you are all safe and well. It has been great to see all the lovely photos you have been sending in, and finding out about activities you are doing together. It is clear to see that you have found lots of things to do during this time we are apart. Please do keep them coming. As you are aware our Pre-school learning page has so many different ideas for you to try. Here are some more links for you.
 
This one is a story to help children understand about the virus:  https://www.earlyyearsstorybox.com/corona/ 
 
 
Finally from Oak National Academy an activity called 'All about me': https://www.thenational.academy/reception/foundation/all-about-me-reception-wk1-2#slide-2 
Thursday 7th May 2020
 
Hello everyone!
It has been great to see all the photos of the different activities that you have been doing at home together. We always enjoy seeing them and hearing about all your achievements! Please keep them coming. Here are some links to things you can do from our home learning page, which include a lovely poem about spring cleaning the world, by Louise Gribbons , some Go Noodle dances to practice, and Top Marks literacy games. Let us know how you get on. (https://www.topmarks.co.uk/Interactive.aspx?cat=38\)
Friday 1st May 2020
 
Hello everyone,
 
Spring is well and truly underway now, and although the weather has changed there are still lots of lovely things to look at outside, just like the flowers in the photo here. Even though we are all at home at the moment, our home learning page is full of fun activities that you can do together. Here are two more links for you to look at and try out, including Joe wicks P.E and ABC Learning.
 
Have fun and let us know what you have been up to.
 
 
 
 
Friday 24th April 2020
 
A big hello to all our Pre-school families. 
 
Even though we can't see you all at the moment we are still here thinking about you, and working behind the scenes eagerly awaiting the time when we can all be back together at Pre-school. I hope that you are all well and enjoying time together. As you know there are lots of activities that you can access on our home learning page of the Shirley School Website, here is a link to one of the activities on the new Oak National Academy that has been set up for children's home learning. This one is about construction. (https://www.thenational.academy/reception/foundation/construction-reception-wk1-4/#)   
Wednesday 18th March 2020
 
Wow what a busy week we are having! Postman Nigel came to visit us in Pre-school and talked to us about his job and what he does, the children asked him questions and then we went outside to look at his van and all the equipment he uses. We also got to have a turn in the front of the van and took turns to wheel the trolley up and down. We learnt lots of interesting facts about a postmen and women's job. Also this week we have been making some special cards for our mums and posted them in the post box!! Finally we did some post office role play, matching the numbers on the letters to the corresponding slot in the frame. 
Friday 13th March 2020
 
This week we have been talking about more people who help us like doctors and dentists. We talked about how doctors help us to look after our bodies and care for us when we are sick. The children then did some role playing, dressing up in doctors outfits and played a sorting game matching the right equipment to the right people.
Thursday 5th March 2020
 
Today has been world book day and the children dressed up as characters from their favourite fairy tales. We shared lots of books together including 'Jack and the Beanstalk' 'The Gingerbread Man' and watched the stories 'Cinderella' and 'The Gruffalo' on the whiteboard. We even did our P.E session wearing our costumes. 
Thursday 27th February 2020
 
Welcome back everyone we hope you had a lovely half term. 
Our new topic is called 'People Who Help Us' and this week we have been talking about family and friends that may help us. The children did an activity where they talked about the people in their family, or friends that help them, e.g to do up their zip, help them get dressed, make their breakfast, comfort them when they have fallen over, and lots of other ways of helping. Then, inside their safety circle they drew pictures of the people who had helped them.
Friday 14th February 2020
 
It has been safety week this week in school and Pre-school children have been learning about the ways they can stay safe. First we looked at how we can stay safe when using the internet e.g telling an adult if something pops up that we don't recognise. Then we looked at some common dangers in different rooms in the home. The children did some activities where they tried to spot the dangers and circle them, and we also looked at a poster that told us who we can ask for help when we are outside and we don't feel safe e.g policeman or woman, teacher etc. and safe buildings like a school, or doctor's surgery.
Friday 7th February 2020
 
Before they can learn how to write and spell children need to be able to say the sounds in words and recognise the written letters. In Pre-school the children have been learning the beginning sounds of their names and then finding their names on the table. They also had a go at practising the beginning sounds of the name of an animal like 'd' for duck and 'p' for pig.
Friday 31st January 2020
 
The theme this week has been kings, queens and knights and the children have been making crowns. They chose to be either a knight, queen, king, prince or princess and then decorated them with sequins, glitter, shiny shapes, and gems. During our last week of this half term we will be having a banquet where the children will be able to wear the crowns they have made. Watch out for more information coming soon!!
Thursday 23rd January 2020
 
During our sessions outside we have been learning how to play ring games. We practised holding hands in a circle and then played a game called 'The Farmer's In His Den.' A child was chosen to be the farmer and stand in the middle of the circle, and then the other children would walk around the child singing the song while each time a new child was chosen to be the 'wife,' 'child,' 'dog,' then 'bone.' The games really help the children to interact with each other, and to learn social skills.
Wednesday 15th January 2020
 
For our topic on Castles and Dragons we have been looking at some photos of the features of a castle, like a moat, a draw bridge, and turrets. Then we talked about who might have lived in them including Kings, Queens, and Knights. We also looked at some photos of what they used for writing and the paper they used which was very different to today. They learned that the people who lived in castles used a quill dipped in ink to write with and wrote on a piece of paper called a scroll, then they did an activity where they had a turn at mark making with a feather dipped in black paint and on paper that looked like a scroll!
Wednesday 8th January 2020
 
A warm welcome to all the new families who have joined us this term, and welcome back to all our existing families too. 
      Our new topic is going to be Castles and Dragons so look out for more information coming next week.
Wednesday 18th December 2019
 
During our last week of term the children have been busy with Christmas preparations. They made a Dear Santa letter, expressing what presents they would like then signed their name and decorated the front of it. The children will also be taking home a lovely bauble with a picture of them in the snow to hang on the tree. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all our families and have a lovely holiday!!
Wednesday 11th December 2019
 
Wow! what fun we have had this week. Lots of our parents came to join their children for a special christmas craft making session. They thoroughly enjoyed making different types of decorations with sequins, glitter, ribbons,and gems galore. I am sure all the children will love decorating their homes with the lovely crafts they have made. Thank you to everyone for coming and have a look at our wonderful photos!
Thursday 5th December 2019
 
Christmas will soon be here and the Pre-school children have been busy practising their fine motor skills to decorate Reindeer and Santa pictures. They used colour pencils and stuck on sequins, and then using their name cards to help, had a try at writing their names onto their pictures.
Thursday 28th November 2019
 
Carrying on with our topic of colour, the children did some pattern matching. They looked at the socks in the water and at the patterns on the socks, and then tried to match them up, pegging them up onto the washing line to make lots of different pairs.
Wednesday 20th November 2019
 
Have a look at our water tray, the children have been practising their counting using the frogs. We sang the song 'five little speckled frogs' using our fingers and counted how many frogs were left each time one jumped into the water, then used the number line to help us find the matching numerals.
Thursday 14th November 2019
 
 
This week the children have been learning about how to be kind to each other. We shared a story on the interactive whiteboard called "Starry Eyed Stan," which was about a starfish called Stan whose friends helped him to make a nasty crab called Lancelot go away. We also practised sharing and turn taking using a sand timer. 
Thursday 7th November 2019
 
This week we have been learning about the colours in a rainbow and how they are made. We discovered that a rainbow is caused by sunlight reflecting on water and that's why you see them when its sunny and raining at the same time. We really enjoyed practising how to draw a rainbow using the interactive whiteboard, have a look at our pictures to see what we did. 
Thursday 31st October 2019
 
Our new topic this half term is colour, and we have been looking at the different colours that we see in our environment during the season of autumn. The children looked at conkers, fir cones, leaves, acorns and other natural objects, exploring their different colours shapes and sizes. They also had fun discovering what the inside of a pumpkin looked like and scooping out the seeds from inside it.
Thursday 17th October 2019
 
The children have had fun using their sense of smell and mark making for a purpose. They smelt inside little pots which contained different foods and then made a mark on a happy or sad face to indicate whether they liked or disliked it. Have a look at the photos to see them recording their preferences.
Friday 11th October 2019
 
The Pre-school children have been practising using their gross motor skills. They used various types of outdoor equipment to help them, like the stilts which helped them to balance and rolling the hoops across the ground. They also had fun negotiating the climbing frame, working out how to pull themselves up and jumping from one hilltop to another.
Friday 4th October 2019
 
This week we have been doing some great outdoor learning. Using dinosaur figures and putting them on white paper the children were able to create shadows while the sun was shining,they then drew around the shadow shapes. They also found out that they could put their hands in water and then make hand prints on the fence.
Friday 27th September 2019
 
As part of our topic we have been talking about how we feel. We have been using books to help us to understand our different emotions,and then talking about the characters and what made them feel sad, happy, cross etc. Have a look at the pictures to see some of the children retelling the stories using puppets.
 
 
 
Friday 20th September 2019
As part of pre-school's topic, Ourselves, the children helped us record their hair colour.
They looked in a mirror to check what colour their hair is and matched it to the heading on the graph. Then, they counted the total number of children in each column and we compared totals to see which groups have more or fewer, most and least. Have a look at the photos to see the children in action! 
Apply now for a Reception school place for September 2020
 
If your child will be aged 4 by 31st August 2020
 
You need to apply NOW for a school place
 
Friday 13th September 2019
The children have had fun playing a game to help them learn each other's names. They sat in a circle (this was a little tricky to achieve!) and rolled a sparkly ball across the circle saying their name as they rolled it. 
Next week we will start the topic, Ourselves, and begin to create self portraits. Keep an eye on our blog and twitter account for progress. 
Friday 6th September 2019
Welcome to the Autumn term in pre-school :) 
Everyone is busy playing, getting to know each other and settling in. The children really are doing brilliantly!  
Our topic this term is Ourselves and the children will be thinking about their feelings, their senses, what they like and their family. Keep an eye on on the website and pre-schools twitter account for news about our plans and activities. 
Friday 6th September 2019
Welcome to the Autumn term in pre-school :) 
Everyone is busy playing, getting to know each other and settling in. The children really are doing brilliantly!  
Our topic this term is Ourselves and the children will be thinking about their feelings, their senses, what they like and their family. Keep an eye on on the website and pre-schools twitter account for news about our plans and activities. 
Friday 19th July 2019
 
Pre-school closes to the children today for the summer break.
 
We have had a wonderful year with our pre-school children and their families, thank you. 
 
Some of our children are moving on to new reception classes in September - we wish them all the best for big school and will miss them very much! 
 
Our younger children will return to pre-school in the autumn term for lots more fun and learning through exciting topics and activities. Pre-school opens again on Wednesday 4th September. 
 
We wish you all a lovely summer holiday. Here's hoping your break is everything you want it to be. 
 
Best wishes from the whole pre-school team :) 
Friday 19th July 2019
 
Pre-school closes to the children today for the summer break.
 
We have had a wonderful year with our pre-school children and their families, thank you. 
 
Some of our children are moving on to new reception classes in September - we wish them all the best for big school and will miss them very much! 
 
Our younger children will return to pre-school in the autumn term for lots more fun and learning through exciting topics and activities. Pre-school opens again on Wednesday 4th September. 
 
We wish you all a lovely summer holiday. Here's hoping your break is everything you want it to be. 
 
Best wishes from the whole pre-school team :) 
Friday 12th July 2019
Pre-school children who are moving up to reception classes in September will receive their Pre-School Report today so do look out for their envelope when you collect your child. Please share the report with them and then use the comment slip on the enclosed letter to provide us with feedback. Thank you :) 
 
In the photos below you'll see some of the ladybirds and grasshoppers the children have been making. They have loved their minibeast topic over the last few weeks and the activities they have taken part in. Next week is the last week of the topic - and term! We'll be investigating worms and snails, looking at different lengths and making spiral patterns.  
 
Tracy is visiting us on Tuesday in her ice cream van. Make sure you have brought £1 to school by then if you would like your child to buy themselves an ice cream. 
 
If your child is moving on to a Shirley Reception class in September don't forget to take them for their visit on Thursday morning. 
 
Just a reminder - Pre-school closes next Friday (19th July) for the summer break. We are open again from Wednesday 4th September. 
Friday 12th July 2019
Pre-school children who are moving up to reception classes in September will receive their Pre-School Report today so do look out for their envelope when you collect your child. Please share the report with them and then use the comment slip on the enclosed letter to provide us with feedback. Thank you :) 
 
In the photos below you'll see some of the ladybirds and grasshoppers the children have been making. They have loved their minibeast topic over the last few weeks and the activities they have taken part in. Next week is the last week of the topic - and term! We'll be investigating worms and snails, looking at different lengths and making spiral patterns.  
 
Tracy is visiting us on Tuesday in her ice cream van. Make sure you have brought £1 to school by then if you would like your child to buy themselves an ice cream. 
 
If your child is moving on to a Shirley Reception class in September don't forget to take them for their visit on Thursday morning. 
 
Just a reminder - Pre-school closes next Friday (19th July) for the summer break. We are open again from Wednesday 4th September. 
Friday 5th July 2019
The children have been busy making their own minibeasts. As you can see from their craft work on this display board, they have used various techniques and materials to create different effects.  
 
Friday 5th July 2019
The children have been busy making their own minibeasts. As you can see from their craft work on this display board, they have used various techniques and materials to create different effects.  
 
Friday 28th June 2019
 
We have had such an exciting week!
 
On Monday some farm animals came to visit us. They were all very well behaved and seemed to enjoy meeting the children just as much as the children enjoyed meeting them! You can have a look at some photos of the visit below. First the children had a look at the animals, then they talked about how they thought the animals' fur or feathers would feel and what their feet were like. Then they were able to go into the pen and pet them to find out for sure and have a closer look. Everyone had a really lovely time :) 
 
Also, we have seen our caterpillars eat and grow, and eat and grow - getting bigger and bigger. By wednesday they were making themselves their cocoon to stay in while they transform. You can see these photos above, in our twitter feed. 
 
The summer may finally have arrived! Please make sure your children have sun cream on before they come to school and that have a (named) sun hat with them to wear when we play outside. Thanks. 
Friday 28th June 2019
 
We have had such an exciting week!
 
On Monday some farm animals came to visit us. They were all very well behaved and seemed to enjoy meeting the children just as much as the children enjoyed meeting them! You can have a look at some photos of the visit below. First the children had a look at the animals, then they talked about how they thought the animals' fur or feathers would feel and what their feet were like. Then they were able to go into the pen and pet them to find out for sure and have a closer look. Everyone had a really lovely time :) 
 
Also, we have seen our caterpillars eat and grow, and eat and grow - getting bigger and bigger. By wednesday they were making themselves their cocoon to stay in while they transform. You can see these photos above, in our twitter feed. 
 
The summer may finally have arrived! Please make sure your children have sun cream on before they come to school and that have a (named) sun hat with them to wear when we play outside. Thanks. 
Friday 21st June 2019 
We found out some interesting facts about spiders this week.
 
Did you know....?
 
Not all spiders catch their food in webs; some of them catch insects by chasing them. 
 
They can have up to 8 eyes, depending on what type of spider they are.
 
Fascinating (but creepy) aren't they?! 
 
We have made some of our own spider webs. Using paper plates, paint, hole punches and wool we put spiders behind their webs ready to catch a fly. Then, for the giant web we used a ball of wool and a circle of friends. Everyone had a turn to hold and roll the wool. You can see our webs in the photos. 
 
We are enjoying watching our caterpillars grow, and they are growing very fast. We hope that in the next week or so they will cocoon themselves and begin their transformation. Keep an eye on our twitter page for updates. 
 
Friday 21st June 2019 
We found out some interesting facts about spiders this week.
 
Did you know....?
 
Not all spiders catch their food in webs; some of them catch insects by chasing them. 
 
They can have up to 8 eyes, depending on what type of spider they are.
 
Fascinating (but creepy) aren't they?! 
 
We have made some of our own spider webs. Using paper plates, paint, hole punches and wool we put spiders behind their webs ready to catch a fly. Then, for the giant web we used a ball of wool and a circle of friends. Everyone had a turn to hold and roll the wool. You can see our webs in the photos. 
 
We are enjoying watching our caterpillars grow, and they are growing very fast. We hope that in the next week or so they will cocoon themselves and begin their transformation. Keep an eye on our twitter page for updates.