At pre-school, we follow two-weekly planning themes, with topics chosen by the children. To ensure that all children access a wide variety of learning topics, we encourage parents and carers to regularly discuss their child’s key interests with their Key Person. We then use these interests to plan exciting, hands-on experiences for all children.
Spring/ Summer Term
COVID-19 did not stop us from having fun! We had to temporarily close pre-school to ensure the safety of our children, staff and families. We prepared the environment to include fun and safe things, ready to welcome back our families. We successfully reopened in June for the last 6 weeks of the school year. We had great fun, from gardening opportunities to musical sessions, to baking competitions and rainbow crafts. Each child received an amazing medal for their great work at staying at home and staying safe, and we waved goodbye to our friends who are off on their journey to big school. We cannot wait to see some returning faces and new faces in September, too!
Wow! What a fun term we have had. We had a special visit from Gillian Dean, who introduced us to the Christmas story, through an interactive story. Then, whilst preparing for our own Christmas Nativity, we decided to make some mince pies and deliver them to The Friendship Club at The Village Centre, who listened to us signing our Nativity songs. Both the practice and final performance were huge successes. To celebrate, we enjoyed Christmas Parties, with a special visit from Father Christmas.
We started off the New Year with a child-led theme, Dinosaurs! Through a pre-historic adventure, we learnt all about dinosaurs and their fossils. We used messy play to create swamps, stegosauruses to match number figures to quantities and used our imagination to create our own fossils.
We celebrated Chinese New Year, using our senses to explore the celebration. Tasting different foods, making movement to music, watching the New Year Gala and dressing up in traditional Chinese costumes helped us to learn all about Chinese New Year.
We have also learnt all about birds. In particular, we have been investigating how to help birds during the winter, as they can struggle to find food. We made pinecone bird feeders, created lists of birds we saw in our garden and watched birds hatching from eggs!
We have explored many different topics this term. We started off learning all about ourselves, like where we live and what makes us special. We created some postcards to our families and then walked to the post office and purchased some stamps. Here, we looked at the different coloured stamps and chose one for our postcard. We then reached up really high and posted our cards into the sorting box. We waited patiently for our postcards to arrive at our homes – it was very exciting!
We have also explored many child-led topics like dinosaurs, slime, transport, cooking and Elmer the Elephant. On Bonfire Night, we discussed the things we were seeing around us (e.g. fireworks displays and sparklers) and turned these into extended learning opportunities, like “sparkler names”, bonfire sensory images and gross motor skill fireworks using chalk paint and brushes. We were also very lucky to have a visit from Thame Fire Station, who kindly showed us one of their engines.
Whilst we have been very busing inside pre-school, we have also been very adventurous on our whole-class outing to Oxford Arboretum. Along with parent helpers, we attended the Arboretum and had the most magical time, exploring different trees and plants and spotting peacocks, peahens and their babies. We hope to organise another outing in the Spring term.