Elland C of E Junior, Infant & Nursery School (VA)

May God give us the courage to try, the will to succeed and hope without limits

Westgate, Elland, West Yorkshire, HX5 0BB







What we've been doing...

Our topic this term focuses on animals in particular, pets. 
Today we learnt about Crufts and how one section of this competition is dog agility. 
The children watched some clips of dog agility and learnt that dogs need simple key word instructions that often link to preposition such as up, down, on, off and sit. 
The children helped to create a simple agility course like cruft's in our outdoor area. They then used their pet dogs to take around the course. This activity was created to support children in a variety of aspects such as, physical development, communication, and language and teamwork. 

It's A Mystery

The children noticed a small door and little letter box in our writing area. We did lots of investigating to find out who the door belonged to! The children enjoyed posting messages to our new visitor and awaited a response!
The next day Nursery received a mystery package from the school kitchen. We noticed the box had the same symbol as the letter box 'MM'. When we opened the packaging, we found lots of cheese! The children were very confused as we did not order any cheese for snack! However, in the package we found a very tiny note telling the children they could try some of their cheese as a thank you for letting their new visitor stay in their classroom. The children think our new visitor may be a mouse, as "mice like to eat cheese" and mouse starts with a M. 
Can We Get a Dog Yet? 
Nursery have already shown lots of interest in our new topic 'Can We Get a Dog Yet?'
Returning from our holiday, we found some new dogs in our classroom. 
The children debated names for our new dogs and discussed how we can look after them. Some children reflected on their own experiences of looking after their dogs. The children decided to walk the dogs outside and groom them to ensure they were clean.
We then decided to make some beds and a kennel for our dogs to ensure they were comfortable and had some where to sleep. The children used resources from our expressive design area to create luxury beds! 
We are Phonics Superstars!!
Nursery have recently started learning and looking at letter sounds through our phonics scheme read, write inc. The children have loved learning rhymes such as 'ssssss snake' and 'a,a,a apple' 
It has been great to see the children grow in confidence when trying to pronounce letter sounds! 
This activity has also allowed children to focus on alliterations through initial sounds.
Peer Massage 
In Nursery we have been trying to find new techniques and skills that will help us calm down when we feel emotional. Nursery are now beginning to understand their emotions and have built up a bank of resources to support their emotional development. 
The children have loved taking part in Peer Massage. This short activity builds strong relationships and teaches the importance of turn taking and considering their peers feelings and wishes. 
Reading Snug 
The rain was beaming down outside, and the children wanted to stay inside. We talked about the weather and what we like to do when we can't go outside and play. The children said they liked to get blankets and read a book or watch a film. We decided to use our parachute as a blanket so the children could get cosy and enjoy a story. The children loved the activity so much that they chose to continue reading their own books. Adults suggested that they shared a book with a partner and ensured they chose a book that represented both of their interests. This activity not only promoted a love of reading and essential reading skills however we also worked on friendships and turn taking. 
Eid Mubarak 
Nursery have loved learning all about Ramadan and Eid. In celebration we created a crescent moon to mark the end of Ramadan using lollypop sticks and glitter. It was a great opportunity for the children to explore similarities and differences in our faiths.
We have enjoyed exploring different cultures and helping our friends to celebrate Eid! 
An Unusual Visitor
This week the foundation stage found an unusual visitor in their playground. The children were so quiet and considerate of our guest. This opportunity was a great example of learning in the moment. We talked about the features of the Hedgehog and how it might be lost and need our help. We decided to place the Hedgehog somewhere quiet and warm so that it felt safe. Mrs Hoyle contacted a Hedgehog sanctuary in Halifax to come and rescue our new friend.
We are looking forward to hearing an update about Lucky the Hedgehog.
Outdoor Learning
Early Years have recently been updating their outdoor area. This is an ongoing project however, 
We have followed children's interests and created a sand pit and pebble small world for the children to explore dinosaurs. We observed lots of great communication and sharing skills! 
Nursery have been explorers this week!
They were investigating our small world area. 
We found some honey, flowers, and a hive.
Some children suggested it could be a lady bird, bee, or spiders house. 
We decided to go outside to find any mini beats who might live in a hive. On our adventure we found woodlice, worms, spiders, ants, and a bumble bee! 
The children also selected books from our reading area to see if they could find any information there!

Learning About Easter

This week nursery have enjoyed learning about the Easter Story. We have celebrated Easter and looked closely at how Christians celebrate during this time of year. Nursery wanted to help create an Easter garden in memory of Jesus and all that he has done for us. They made crosses using lolly pop sticks or twigs that they collected from outside. Each child then collected rocks to place around the tomb. 
The children then had hot cross buns for snack. We enjoyed tasting something different. We learnt that hot cross buns have a cross on them also to represent the sacrifice Jesus made. The children sat together to share their snack which allowed for them to communicate their own interests and celebrations around Easter time. 

Easter Egg Ornaments

The children enjoyed decorating their own Easter egg ornament. We sat outside in the sunshine whilst exploring various textures we can create when painting. The children enjoyed using both small and large painting brushes as well as toothbrushes to cause an effect. Some children explored mixing colours which created new interests in provision. 

Water Fun

The children loved creating a water area outdoors using tunnels. This activity helped our children explore concepts and use their initiative when problems occurred. The children where faced with a problem when their bowl at the start of the course became empty. They decided to fill up their cups from the bowl at the end of the course to ensure they had a water supply at either ends of the course. We explored concepts such as full and empty as well as fast when lots of water gushed through the course. This activity also focused on making relationships and respecting the wishes and feelings of others. Nursery are starting to realise that our equipment must be shared so that everyone can have a turn. 

Well-being Wednesday

This week we have focused on how to be a 'good friend.'
We took part in the friendship chain challenge.The children had to consider the feelings and wishes of their partner whilst taking part in a range of activities.
Let it Snow
The children were completing a busy job when the weather outside suddenly changed!! We wanted to explore the snow so decided to put on our coats and have a look outside. The children were so excited to play in the snow!
It's Beginning to Look A Lot Like Christmas 
In Nursery Father Christmas brought us a Gingerbread House to decorate in our key worker groups. Father Christmas knows that in Nursery we make lots of good choices. The children worked in teams and shared all our resources. We have learnt that sharing is caring!  We had ten minutes to decorate our houses with sweets, icing sugar and lots of glitter!
We had lots of fun!
Christmas Grotto
The children have loved taking on the role as Father Christmas's Elves. Our home area has been transformed into a Christmas grotto so that the children can wrap their own gifts and write Christmas cards. We have also enjoyed exploring our Christmas Eve box and talking about our family traditions. The children wanted to leave out carrots for their reindeers and doughnuts for Father Christmas. 


Nursery have loved their P.E lessons with Mr Greenwood. 

This week the children have completed their first circuit! They had to listen carefully to instructions and follow them.The children were also developing their self-confidence by trying new pieces of equipment. We are looking forward to seeing the children's progress throughout next term.
Abstract Christmas Tree! 
We have slowly introduced some simple shapes such as triangles and squares. The teachers decided to create an abstract Christmas tree using tape on our carpet area. The tree was made with a large triangle and a small square.
The children had to take turns and help decorate our Christmas tree as a team. We originally spoke about ensuring we filled all gaps so that the children spaced out their resources. 
We loved decorating in a new fun way!
Let's make a pattern!
In maths nursery are learning to make a 2-colour pattern. Recently we gave some children the challenge of making a pattern using 3 colours. 
We encourage the children to chant their pattern first. 
Outdoor learning 
Welcome to our Christmas house 
The children wanted to decorate our house outside. 
We like to leave this area open ended so that the children can use their imaginations. The children were provided with tinsel, baubles, an adult and blue tac. They had to give adults instructions to achieve their desired goal. 
Painting with sticks 
We chalked a triangle on the floor to represent a Christmas tree. The children then had to go and collect a large stick to use for painting. We wanted the children to use natural resources. 
Tis The Season 
In Nursery we have had a visit from our Christmas elf Ernie. 
He decorated our classroom with lots of magical lights and tinsel. We had the opportunity to decorate our own Christmas tree! This provided children with the opportunity to talk about their celebrations at home, as well as, share resources and taking turns. 
We collected some wonderful observations and the children had lots of fun!
Physical Education 
This week we have learnt how to put on our P.E kits for the first time with some adult support. 
The children loved having their own P.E kit and couldn't wait to try them on. 
Adults focused on creating independence for the children as they got dressed for P.E. for the first time.
Let's Make a Pattern 
In nursery we are learning how to make and continue a two-colour pattern. 
After we learnt how to chant a pattern, we decided to put our learning to the test and make our own patterns.
We used Marshmallows and paint to print our pattern on a piece of card, once we had made it first with our counting bears.  
It was lovely to hear the children chanting their pattern whilst completing their task. 
Nursery have worked hard during our maths activities this week. 
Outdoor Learning 
This week we have enjoyed completing our busy jobs outside. 
The children have demonstrated the ability to stay focused on a task outside. 
Some of the children have taken what they have learned from the classroom and brought it outside. 
For example, we have loved making a simple two-colour pattern using our number fish.
The children have explored lots of gross and fine motor activities to help them become better writers too.
One of our favourite tasks was the crate challenge. The children had to work with a partner to cross the playground without touching the floor. they had to use their communication skills as well as considering the feelings and needs of their friend. 
Which porridge did Nursery like best? 
The Three Bears where so kind! After we sent them an email, they dropped off some of their delicious porridge for us to try. 
We made a tally chart to find out which was our favourite. The children tried Daddy Bear's, Mummy Bear's and Baby Bear's porridge. Daddy Bear's was salty, Mummy Bear's was sweet and Baby Bear's was just right.
Nursery liked Mummy Bear's porridge the most because it was sweet. 
Someone has been sitting on my chair?! They have broken it!
The children were very upset when they found that one of their chairs was broken!
We looked closer at the chair and found some porridge and golden hair. We had a look and compared the hair to our friends. Who might of broken our chair? The children thought it might have been that 'Naughty Goldilocks' 
we talked about making good choices and what 'not a good choice' looks like.
Nursery where so helpful and wanted to work together to fix our chair!
We always make good choices!
Goldilocks and the Three Bears 
The children enjoyed playing with our small world figures. 
We changed the doll's house into the three Bears House so that the children could re-tell the story and consolidate their learning. 
The children have been introduced to the concepts of size. They were able to explain who had the big, medium, and small chair. The children can now take these concepts into other areas of their learning. 
Gingerbread Man Gross Motor Skills
The children were given the challenge of making a life size Gingerbread man. We have loved our talk for write story so far and are excited to learn more!
The children worked in teams sharing resources and considering the interests and ideas of their friends. It was lovely to see the children working together. Each group drew around one of their friends. They discussed whether he would have buttons or a bow tie. 
This activity was great for making relationships and considering the wishes and feelings of others.
Doodle Sticks
One of our focuses this term is gross and fine motor development. This is a skill children need before they start to write.
We have enjoyed using doodle sticks to try and write simple shapes in the sky. Nursery have worked with reception children who have modelled this activity during outdoor learning. 
Gingerbread man tasting 
The children wanted to know what would happen to the Gingerbread Man if he swam across the river rather than jumping on the fox's nose. Our teachers followed our interests and created a science experiment. 
The children helped decide what liquids we would use.
We used milk, water, oil, vinegar, syrup and icing sugar. 
We made predictions of what would happen to the Gingerbread Man. We had lots of fun and learnt lots of new vocabulary such as floating and sinking. 
Gingerbread homework 
The children loved sharing their homework with their friends. The children were asked to draw or create a Gingerbread man to discuss with their friends. Some children even emailed their homework so that we could look at pictures from home. This activity provided children with the opportunity to talk and listen. 
Look at our fantastic work! our teachers where so proud. 
Gross Motor Challenge 
The children love taking part in obstacle courses outside. Today we decided to try something different. The children loved finding various ways to travel over our hurdles. We were focusing on strengthening our core and gross motor skills to enable us to become fantastic writers. 
The Gingerbread Man
This term the children will be looking at the story of the Gingerbread man in our literacy lessons. On Monday we received some clues to find the missing pieces to our puzzle. When we put the pieces together, we created a Gingerbread man! The children were so excited!
The children then wanted to fix him and decided to use their creative minds to put him back together. The children used their prior knowledge and tried to stick him back together with glue and Sellotape. They all demonstrate strong teamwork and shared our resources to get the job done!
We then decided to put him on the radiator to dry. 
The children asked if they could make their own Gingerbread men. The resources where left in the creative area so that they could access the activity independently and let their creativity run wild!
Look at some of our fantastic creations!
Outdoor Learning 
In Nursery we wanted to do a big tidy outside. The children loved been a part of setting up our provision. The children loved getting brushes and rakes to collect all the fallen leaves. This activity supported children's gross and fine motor development as well as linking to our season autumn. The children made lots of comments on their environment. 
Ghost Biscuits 
The children loved decorating and creating their ghost biscuit. 
We created simple instructions for the children to follow.
We discussed the importance of washing hands to ensure they are super clean and germ free!
Gross Motor Development 
The children loved colouring under tables. They had to stretch to reach the top. This activity helps strengthen stomach and gross motor muscles. 
The children had to create their own pumpkin and loved learning in a new fun way.
Pumpkin Carving 
The children loved pulling and scooping out all the pulp and seeds inside the pumpkins. We talked about the stem and skin of the pumpkin and how it was different to our skin. 
The children thought the pulp felt slimy and cold.
We had lots of fun investigating the pulp and seeds.

Friendship Potion

In Nursery we talked about what makes a good friend. The children came up with some wonderful ideas such as, help me up when I fall, giving hugs and sharing. The children wrote their mixtures and then mixed lots of our good friend qualities together. 

Outdoor learning 
The children are now able to set up their own obstacle courses and create their own rules. This shows great progression and teamwork!
Well done Nursery!
Who will help me bake the bread?
Our talk for write story is the Little Red Hen.
The children have loved our story and can now re-tell it using our story map. 
Today we decided to make our own bread just like the Little Red Hen. We re-told parts of the story whilst baking. The children created hedgehog bread as it linked nicely to our autumn topic. 
They smelt delicious! 
This term Nursery have explored sorting and matching objects. We used our autumn pumpkins to explore the concept of size. The children then sorted and matched objects by small, medium, and large. 
"The big pumpkin is heavy" said one child.
"That's a medium size" said another child.
Matching socks. 
In maths children are learning to sort objects based on colours. We decided to give the children a challenge and see if they could sort Dot the Dogs messy socks based on their patterns. Nursery did a fantastic job and knew when socks where the same and not the same. We put them in the washing machine so they would be nice and clean for Dot.

Puppet Theatre

Our Talk for Write story this term is the Little Red Hen. 

The children enjoyed making their own puppets of characters from our story. The children enjoyed acting out the story in our puppet theatre. 
Love for Reading
Our reading area is one of our favourite places to get comfy. The children enjoy selecting a reading buddy to cuddle whilst they enjoy reading a story. The children know how to look after our books and can use their language comprehension to create magical stories of their own! 
3D Autumn Tree
In Nursery we decided to create a 3D Autumn Tree for our classroom. The children selected autumn colours to paint our tree and got to work. We are promoting the Christian value of Friendship by sharing our paint brushes and working as a team. Nursery are learning that their friends feelings are important too.  
Autumn Tree Painting
In nursery we are exploring the season Autumn. Children learnt what autumn colours are. We then went on a colour hunt outside finding various colour leaves in our provision area. Understanding the world and our surrounding areas 30-50 months.
All aboard the colour train!
We love playing with trains in nursery and decided to create our own colour trains in our special learning books. The children had to match objects with the colours on their train. They did a super job at matching and sorting based on colours. 

Little Red Hen

We received a letter from Framer Ted who has lost his Little Red Hen! Nursery were very worried and thought it would be a good choice to look for her! When we returned to our classroom, we found a small egg and some red feathers. We decided that they must have belonged to the Little Red Hen.

In our Key worker groups, we created lost posters so that we could find her and return her back to Farmer Ted. Please keep a look out and contact nursery if you find her!! 

Funky Fingers

We are working on our fine motor skills so that we can become great writers. This week we have learnt the skill of threading. Each child used a piece of string to thread through our autumn leaves. We really enjoyed our funky finger activity! 

Our topic this term is 'why do leaves turn crunchy?' 
In nursery we are focusing on the season Autumn and the changes we observe currently. We enjoyed finding leaves that had fallen off our trees outside. We explored their textures and the noises they made when we walked over them. 
In our key worker groups, we each made an Autumn tree and explored colours that we can see outside during this season. 

Colour Sorting

In nursery we are learning to sort objects based on their colours. 


In our Phonics lessons we have been going on listening walks.

Nursery's First Busy Week

We have enjoyed making lots of new friends and playing in our new classroom.
In nursery we are learning the story of The Little Red Hen using our talk for write programme. Children enjoyed re-telling the story though puppet shows. We will continue to focus on this story throughout this half term.

Nursery have enjoyed developing their fine motor skills by making marks using chalks. Children used chalk on different surfaces to see what marks they would make.

Let's get moving! In nursery we enjoyed completing our obstacle course. Children demonstrated that they could follow simple instructions.

In nursery we are learning about colours. Today the children went on a colour hunt to make our class rainbow. Children worked as a team and helped each other find objects to add to our rainbow. We had lots of fun! 

In Nursery we like to promote a love for reading. Today we made our very own reading dens. The children also worked on their fine motor skills by decorating the boxes in lots of different colours which links to our maths topic this term. We had a great time with our friends.

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