Our Blog Archive 2018/19
Friday 12th July 2019
Today was our graduation ceremony and I do hope you all enjoyed it. Please see below the Head teacher’s speech to parents and carers
Good morning everyone.
Thank you so much for choosing Children’s House for your child's first school experience.
We have had a wonderful year and we come together today to recognise and honour our nursery graduates.
Over the past terms the children have come through these doors to make friends, play, paint, draw, build, dress-up, read, write, and cook, swim, ice-skate, attend forest school and learn hundreds of new and exciting things. Through the power of play, our children have grown socially, emotionally, physically and academically. Through the power of teachers and parents working together our children are strong, creative, independent learners ready for the next stage of their education.
As our children move into the next phase of their academic lives we hope they will never forget the lessons they have learnt here and will remember that each and every one of them is a unique and talented individual with so much to offer.
Our children know it is ok to fail, they know that if they want success it’s important to try again, they know how to be a good friend and they know they are valued.
We hope we have helped instill in them a strong sense of self and that they are proud of the unique person they are.
This year has seen us open an additionally resourced provision for young deaf children and seen our two year old provision go from strength to strength.
This morning we see some of our first cohort of two year olds graduate and move on to primary school.
Finally I want to say congratulations to you as parents and carers for the work you have done with your child and the support you have given to the school. Parenting is the hardest job and you are all amazing.
We have loved working with each and every one of you.
As we say goodbye today please do keep the memory of Children’s House alive in your heart and never forget that you will always be a part of our Children’s House Family.
Have a safe and enjoyable holiday and thank you for everything.
Graduation 2019 - Goodbye and Good Luck
Thursday 11th July 2019
Today was the last day of term for children returning in September and we wish everyone a safe and happy holiday .I would like to thank all parents and carers for choosing Children’s House for your child. We have had a wonderful year and as you look back through the blog and your child’s learning journal, you can be reminded of some of the fun times we have shared together. Children’s behaviour has been exemplary and progress is outstanding across the board. Thank you for supporting everything we do and working with us to make your child’s experience of nursery the best it can be.
We look forward to welcoming you all back in September and showing you all the completed building works.
Building starts in earnest on Monday when the school becomes a construction zone.
Leavers, please be in school for 9.15 a.m. tomorrow, when we will honour the class of 2019 with a special Graduation Ceremony. Bring your tissues!!
Have a lovely evening.
Clearing the garden for the holiday
Making our Leaver's Cards
Tuesday 9th July 2019
As you walk around Children’s House you have probably noticed the packing crates in every room. At the end of each day staff are busy putting all the toys and equipment away as we have to leave the nursery ready for the builders on Monday. We are involving the children as much as possible so that children who are returning understand the exciting changes that will take place over the holiday.
In nursery today children were busy writing and drawing pictures of their trip to the Wildlife Park, others were making leavers cards and the younger children were busy learning about butterflies.
I’m sure you all know that that each butterfly has finally emerged from its chrysalis. Today their wings were strong enough to release them in the garden. The children all came out to wave them goodbye. It has been a wonderful experience for the children to observe their class caterpillars change into beautiful red admiral butterflies.
We also welcomed teachers from some of our primary schools today, they came to meet children who are transferring in September.
In the afternoon Fiona Stokes from the Parental Engagement team visited to plan an exciting programme of workshops and courses for the next academic year.
Caterpillar to Butterfly
Monday 8th July 2019
Today was our annual Leaver’s Trip to Paradise Wild Life Park in Broxbourne, Hertfordshire. We have been visiting this park for a number of years now as it has plenty to interest the children, including a big cat territory, hooves and humps quarter, mammals of the world, an Angkor Reptile Temple, Birds of paradise, Farmyard animals, dinosaurs, a splash pool, play areas, an adventure playground, a jungle gym and live animal experiences.
Everything got off to a good start the weather was perfect, everyone arrived on time, the coaches were waiting and there was little traffic. Everyone enjoyed the experience and of course, the children loved their picnic or “lunch on the grass” as one child told us on his return.
We hope you all had a lovely day and that it will become one of your memories of your time at Children’s House.
Meanwhile back in nursery we hosted a stay, play and learn session for all the new children who will be starting in September and their families. There was a talk for parents, which covered topics such as establishing routines, managing behaviour and preparing children for nursery.
Paradise Wild Life Park
Friday 5th July 2019
Thank you again for supporting our Summer Fair, we will let you know how much we have raised once the money has been counted. The children had a quieter day today after all the excitement of this week. Outdoors children were making mud in the forest area and building with the outlast blocks in the shade.
Indoors children were working on their special books. Chris and Guthsna spent the morning updating their safeguarding training and we welcomed future trainee teachers to spend the day with us.
If you are going on the leavers trip on Monday please be in school by 9 a.m. promptly, you will need a packed lunch for you and your child, drinks, sunscreen, a sunhat, a swimsuit for paddling and a towel. I hope you all enjoy your visit to Paradise Wild Life Park.
Have a lovely weekend
Fun in the garden
Thursday 4th July 2019
Today was our annual summer fete and we would like to say a big thank you to everyone who came out to support us. The money we raise on this fun day is used to provide extras for the children including outings, clubs and music lessons.
There was plenty to do including, face painting, henna, a toy stall, balloons, bubbles, games such as hook a duck, knock the cans, guess the name of the bear, estimate the sweets in a jar, and of course there was delicious food, a cake stall and drinks and ice-creams.
We hope you all enjoyed the day, everyone seemed to be having fun and the weather was perfect. It was lovely to see how many of our old children came back to visit us, and we were pleased to welcome the head of the hearing impaired service who dropped by to join in with the fun.
Summer Fete July 2019
Wednesday 3rd July 2019
As the end of the school year approaches, we seem to be getting busier and busier and today was no exception. At 9.00a.m. children left for their swimming lesson at Poplar Baths, in the afternoon children went to Forest School and the day finished with an energetic Sports Club.
In between all the activity, children were helping to prepare for the summer fair. It’s so good to see how independent the children are. Many are able to follow a simple recipe unaided and were busy baking shortbread to sell at the fair, others made price labels and posters and others helped package sweets and sort the goods for the stalls.
Do bring friends and relatives to the Summer Fair tomorrow. 3. p.m. to 5.p.m. there will be music, hot food, street food, ice-cream and plenty of fun and games.
All proceeds will be used to support the wider curriculum, clubs, swimming, trips, and music lessons.
Hope to see you all tomorrow.
Making Biscuits for the Summer Fair
Tuesday 2nd July 2019
Today children have been helping to prepare for our annual summer fair. They have been busy writing and decorating signs and making bunting to decorate the garden.
The summer fair is after school this year starting at 3pm. Do bring family, friends, and your spare coins. All money raised goes directly to extras for the children.
Indoors children continued to explore symmetry following on from their interest in butterflies; they used mirrors and practiced folding paintings to make symmetrical patterns.
The weather was wonderful so most children enjoyed the sunshine and were busy out in the garden. Please do put sunscreen on your child before nursery and provide a sun hat too.
If you would like to donate cakes for our Summer Fair Cake Stall they will be gratefully received.
Monday 1st July 2019
There was so much happening at Children’s House today, we started with a stay and play session for new children joining us in September, followed by a course for their parents on supporting transition into nursery. It was nice to welcome our new families although of course it is always sad to have to say goodbye to our current cohort of children and parents/carers.
Shazna went off to an exciting outdoors maths course at Harry Roberts Nursery School and we had the school photographer in nursery to take the graduation photos.
In class, children were sequencing the story of the Very Hungry Caterpillar and writing their own versions.
The day finished with a well-attended New Parent’s Evening.
Sequencing a Story
Friday 28th June 2019
This week we have noticed that butterflies are appearing in the garden and visiting the flowers. The children are fascinated by them and are finding hard to believe that our class caterpillars are going to turn into butterflies soon. Out in the garden children mixed their own watercolours and painted butterfly pictures.
In my opinion, the results were better than this year’s entries into the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition.
As the children painted, it was a good opportunity to revisit symmetry and pattern as well as an opportunity to learn new vocabulary for the parts of the butterfly such as antennae, proboscis, thorax and spiracles.
Children also asked to play some of the games they had tried at Sports Day and indoors it was Focus Friday where children were busy updating their special books.
Have a lovely weekend and don’t forget your sunscreen for Saturday. It’s going to be a scorcher.
Butterflies in the garden
Thursday 27th June 2019
Today was our annual Sports Day; it was such a fun day for everyone. The theme this year was mini-beasts so each key group adopted an insect of their choice, we had the lovely ladybirds, busy bees, beautiful butterflies, hopping grasshoppers and many more, each team had their own chant and even the two-year-old “mighty ants” joined in.
There were eight different games to try including a sack race, hobbyhorse racing, an egg and spoon race, stilt walking, bean bag tossing, hockey dribbling, an over and under game, and the long jump. Everyone participated and even the staff were able to show off their sporting skills.
Half way through everyone sat down to share fruit, juice and water and the day finished with the presentation of Children’s House Sport’s Day medals and the final treat of ice lollies for everyone.
It was a really special occasion which everyone enjoyed.
Wednesday 26th June 2019
Wednesdays are always busy days at Children’s House. At 9.00 a.m., our swimmers set off for Poplar Baths and their swimming lesson and in the afternoon, another group of children went to Forest school for an exciting mini-beast hunt. The highlight of the session was the discovery of a gigantic slug under a leaf.
After school, the children enjoyed Sports Club with Kamran where they practiced games for Sports Day. Don’t forget tomorrow is Sports Day so the children will need to come to school in trainers and their school t.shirts.
In the evening staff set off for Canary Wharf to deliver leaflets advertising our nursery. If you can help distribute our leaflets around the local area please do let us know. We still have full time places available for working parents entitled to the 30 hour code.
Deep in the Forest
Tuesday 25th June 2019
Work on caterpillars continued today. There is great interest in the classroom caterpillars with many of the children giving them names. Everyone is watching them impatiently as they slowly change into butterflies. Children were learning about the life cycle with Shazna and many drew and sequenced their own pictures.
The book of the week is the Very Hungry Caterpillar this old favourite continues to fascinate children and we always make sure everyone leaves nursery familiar with this lovely book.
After school, all staff continued with their British Sign Language lessons. Michael the instructor is so pleased with everyone it is time to start getting ready for Level One exams! Wish us all luck.
Rain is forecast again for tonight but then sunshine is on its way at last!
The Life Cycle of a Caterpillar
Monday 24th June 2019
When you arrived at nursery today, you will have noticed the fence all around the carpark and the new green fence in the playground. I am so pleased to be able to say that work on our new building has started. The children were very excited to see the fence and we are looking forward to moving our two year olds into their own space in September.
Work on mini-beasts continues. We have real caterpillars in class so that children can observe first-hand the process of metamorphosis as our caterpillars change into beautiful butterflies. It’s an amazing thing to watch. In the playground, the children acted out the story of “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” with Salma.
They thought about how caterpillars moved, how they make cocoons and how they wiggle out as a new butterfly.
Other children were practicing races and games for Sports Day and there was lots of interest in the garden as our plants seem to have shot up over the weekend.
Heavy rain and thunder are forecast for tonight, so stay dry indoors if you can.
The Life Cycle of a Butterfly
Friday 21st June 2019
There was some lovely work going on in nursery today. Older children were busy counting the spots on ladybirds and adding the numbers together. Many of our older children confidently know their number bonds to 10 and all children enjoy counting, finding numbers in the environment and singing number rhymes at songs.
You can support your child’s mathematical development at home in lots of simple ways, some suggestions: setting the table with the right number of plates, matching a spoon to every dish, pairing socks after the laundry, cutting a cake into the right number of pieces, sharing out smarties or pieces of fruit, there are so many simple everyday maths ideas. If you want to support maths at home, and are looking for ideas, do borrow a maths pack from Shazna.
Upstairs younger children drew the mini-beasts they had seen in the garden and then had a go at saying and writing their initial sounds. Children are making outstanding progress with their awareness of letters and sounds and really enjoy using their knowledge.
Today is the longest day of the year so enjoy the summer solstice and long hours of sunlight.
If you live close to the nursery, you will notice that this weekend the playground wall is coming down and new fencing is being erected around the carpark. Building our new provision for two year olds has begun and of course, we are all very excited.
Watch this space!
Have a lovely weekend.
Initial sounds with younger children
Thursday 20th June 2019
This morning we had the last session of the Early Mark Making Course for parents/Carers. It was very well attended and everyone picked up useful ideas to support early writing at home. Thank you to Peter from the Parental Engagement team.
A group of children visited Old Palace to look around their new school; they all enjoyed it and felt very important and grown up when they returned to nursery.
Children’s interest in spiders and weaving continues, today they were shown how to weave with paper strips and it was surprising to see how quickly they picked up the technique. It was a good opportunity to teach new vocabulary as children mastered over, under, over, under.
In the garden, our Chefs prepared a healthy mini pizza snack for their friends and on the top floor; the two year olds enjoyed a wonderful tactile experience with spaghetti.
We finished the day with a planning meeting.
Two Year Olds Explore Spaghetti
Weavers at work
Preparing a healthy snack for friends
Wednesday 19th June 2019
Today started with a group of children heading off for their swimming lesson at Poplar Baths, and it finished with a very energetic sports club. The children are making excellent progress in swimming and even the most reluctant child has ventured into the pool.
In nursery, children were busy designing and making their own mini-beasts and painting their spider’s pictures.
Karla was teaching children how to do addition sums today , many of our older children have mastered simple addition and can add two sets of objects together, add one to a set and say how many and subtract from a set. We always teach maths in meaningful contexts; today children were problem solving using mini-beasts and then recorded their answers using both pictures and numbers.
Chris and Guthsna met with the architect of the new extension today to discuss finishes, electrics and final touches, which was of course very exciting. We know that there will be inconvenience and do apologise however it will mean that children will get the nice environment they so deserve.
Adding and Subtracting
Tuesday 18th June 2019
Of all the different mini-beasts in the garden children are showing the most interest in spiders. They are fascinated by them and yesterday there was a weaving activity outdoors following the discovery of spider webs in the forest area.
In the two-year-old class, children were mixing their own cloud sand. With a little support even our youngest children can handle tools independently and follow simple instructions. They all really enjoyed playing with the cloud dough and the process of mixing and stirring. If you would like to make some at home here is the recipe:
A cup of Flour
Vegetable oil (to mix)
Powder paint (to colour)
All you do is mix everything together and you have a lovely, fluffy cloud dough.
In the evening, there was a meeting of the Governing Body. We were very sad to say goodbye to our Governor Nasima Alam.
Nasima has served on the Governing Body for almost ten years and has provided outstanding support and challenge to the school. We would like to thank her for everything she has done for our community and wish her all the best for the future.
Weaving like a spider
Monday 17th June 2019
This week the children will be learning all about mini-beasts. After all the recent rain the garden is full of slugs, snails and worms and of course this is the time to discover caterpillars busy munching on our plants and leaves and observe bees and ladybirds visiting the flowers. The children are fascinated by the garden creatures and love to observe them. Today they went on a mini-beast hunt outdoors whilst in the classroom they were discovering facts about spiders. Some children were lucky enough to find some real ones on their mini beast hunt.
This is the perfect project for the summer, with lots of scope for play and investigation in outside spaces. Looking at mini-beasts provides opportunities to learn about how we care for other creatures and for our environment, as well as plenty of counting and sequencing activities. We also provide children with a range of fiction and non-fiction books to support the topic.
The Parental Engagement team were also in school today to deliver a session on Early Mark Making, everyone enjoyed it and found it useful. We also had the UCL research students in school.
In the afternoon we had a fire practice and it was impressive to see how quickly and safely the children can evacuate the building. We have regular Fire Drills so by this time of year all of the children know exactly what to do.
Salma finished the day with dance club.
Discovering Mini Beasts
Friday 14th June 2019
Today was focus Friday, this is dedicated time set aside for children to work on their Learning Journals (Special books) with their key person. This is when we look at and discuss the child’s work and the children choose the photographs and work samples they want in their book. It is also a time to revisit old work and photos and see if the children want to add any new comments. Children love their special books; do remember you and your child have ownership of them. You can take them home at t weekends and add photos whenever you would like to.
We also said goodbye to Ruheda today. She is off on maternity leave for a year. Ruheda will be much missed; we wish her all the best and look forward to meeting new baby and eventually enrolling him or her at Children’s House.
Have a lovely weekend.
Thursday 13th June 2019
Today we had an open morning for parents of children who will be joining our resource base for deaf children in September. We love having this provision at Children’s House and it has been wonderful to see the rapid progress all our children are making. We are looking forward to our new resource base next to the school. This is on track to open in September.
Children were also busy at the woodwork bench with self-initiated projects and out in the garden there was a fishing game, which the children had designed and made themselves.
Upstairs Rina made fishcakes with the children for snack, which everyone who eats fish really enjoyed.
We finished the day with a whole school-planning meeting. Next week we will be studying mini beasts. After the recent heavy rain, the garden is full of slugs and snails, which have been an endless source of fascination.
Child Initiated Projects
Making Fish Cakes
Wednesday 12th June 2019
“Rain, rain go away
come again, another day”
During this unseasonably cold and rainy spell, could we ask that children come to school with a waterproof jacket and waterproof shoes? We can’t keep small children indoors all day as they are desperate to go outside in all weathers and rain is perfectly ok if they are wearing a warm, waterproof jacket. We will of course do our best to ensure that all children stay dry but occasionally the urge to jump in a puddle does become overwhelming and children end up with damp shoes. We will do our very best but you can help us by sending in wellington boots, especially as some children don’t like to wear the nursery ones especially if they don’t fit well.
Today children were cooking fish with Kamran.
It was interesting to see children make the connection between the fish we eat and the fish they had dissected earlier in the week. Many children did not realise that the fish they ate had once been a living creature.
By this time of the school year the children are competent cooks, they know to wash their hands, put on an apron, follow a recipe and use the correct tools. They were able to peel and chop vegetables, and assist with cooking the pasta and fish.
They really enjoyed the result and want tuna pasta to stay on the cooking menu.
In the afternoon children had a fun time painting with mud at Forest school and at the end of the day children relaxed with a yoga session led by Kamran.
Tuesday 11th June 2019
Another interesting day at Children’s House. The dentist was in school to talk to children about tooth care and how to keep their teeth clean and healthy.
Chris and Guthsna were out at Lansbury Lawrence Primary School for the final day of Peer Review. Once again, this has been a valuable process, which has led directly to better outcomes for children as staff looked at ways to improve writing across the curriculum. We have signed up for Peer Review next academic year and look forward to hearing which schools we will be working with.
Children’s interest in sea life continues and today many children chose to paint and draw fish either from real life observations or from reference books.
Drawing and painting fish
Monday 11th June 2019
Today was an exciting start to the week. We were proud to host visitors from PWC Forensics. This visit was part of their company training day and the focus was innovation and resilience.
The visitors arrived promptly and were greeted by the children. They were given a guided tour of the nursery and had the opportunity to spend time in the classrooms and out in the garden. They were not at all daunted by the rainy weather and enjoyed the mud kitchen, observing snails, and colouring puddles with marbling paint. They enjoyed listened to the children sing a selection of their favourite songs and talking to them about the nursery.
They explained their work to the children who were interested to hear about their exciting jobs.
At the end of the morning, the visitors listened to a talk from Chris and Guthsna on facing challenge, narrowing the gap and building resilient communities, they were joined by Haseena a parent volunteer who gave an inspirational talk on her work on the Early Words Together Programme. The morning finished with a question and answer session.
The visitors were unanimous in their praise of the nursery and rated the morning an outstanding experience. We really enjoyed meeting them too and hope we will have further opportunities to work together.
In class today, children were exploring fish, they had the opportunity to observe real fish, look at their bones and scales and record what they observed.
We also had a visit from the architect and project manager who came to discuss arrangements for the exciting building works over the summer.
Friday 7th June 2019
An unseasonably cold and wet day today. We were all wondering what has happened to our summer weather. In between the heavy showers, children were able to get outdoors to continue with the parachute games they were enjoying before the rain. The school parachute is one of our best-loved items and there are so many games that the can children play. Here are just a few:
Children hold the parachute so that it is stretched out and they place a collection of small balls, beanbags or other small toys onto the parachute. They have fun shaking the parachute to make the popcorn pop right off the chute. You can also split into two teams – one each side of the parachute – and have fun trying to make the balls bounce off the opposition’s side of the parachute.
Jack in the Box
This is a great game for groups of younger children (with older children as helpers). The children all sit under the parachute with the adults each holding a handle down at ground level. Sing together;
Jack is quiet down in his box,
Until somebody opens the lid!
As you finish singing the second line, all of the adults lift the parachute up high and the children shout ‘Boo!’
Each child holds a parachute handle with one hand so that they are all facing in a clockwise direction and the parachute is stretched out. The children jump, skip, hop or run in a clockwise direction and then use a music cue for them to change direction to counter clockwise. Each time they hear the music the direction is changed.
Children spread around the parachute and hold it stretched out. They raise the parachute quickly so that it billows up into a mushroom shape (keep holding the edge). As it fills, the adult calls the names of two children. These two let go of the parachute and run under it to swap places before it comes down again.
Parachutes are great for parties. If you want to try one at home, Amazon sell small ones or why not make your own from an old sheet adding some strips of ribbon at regular intervals for handles
Have a lovely weekend and let’s hope we get some summer sun.
Parachute games are always fun ...!
Thursday 6th June 2019
At Children’s House, we provide daily opportunities for children to extend their interests and engage in self-initiated activity. A self-initiated activity is one that is wholly decided by the child and is the result of an intrinsic motivation to explore a project or express an idea. When they do this, children develop their creativity, make connections and extend their thinking. With the right environment and resources, children can engage in independent learning. Independent learning is about children having opportunities and time to plan, develop and extend their play, interests and learning.
As teachers, we encourage the children to explore, take risks, make decisions, solve problems and share their achievements with others. We want children to step out of their comfort zone and realise that the best way to learn is through making mistakes and having another go to see what will work.
When we provide children with purposeful opportunities to transfer and apply the knowledge and skills they gain from other areas of learning in a context that is meaningful to them, this leads to a consolidation of skills and a deeper understanding.
This week the children have been learning about fish and one of the children discovered that some people keep fish in their home, after looking online and in reference books, she decided that she would make an aquarium and asked her friend to help
This led to discussions about what resources were needed and how they would make it together. They chose their materials carefully and working as a team they made an aquarium that they were very proud of. It was lovely to see the finished product, however; what was more important was the process of making the aquarium and children discussing, experimenting and problem solving together.
Have a look in the classroom for more examples of child-initiated projects, there is always work on display in the creative areas and around the building.
Child initiated project
Wednesday 5th June 2019
What a lovely afternoon we had today. We really enjoyed sharing Eid celebrations with our families and friends and hope that you all enjoyed the fun.
Thank you to everyone for all the delicious food you made, everyone enjoyed all the lovely things on offer and went home well fed and happy.
We started the celebrations with songs and Eid Prayers from the children, then children told how they celebrated Eid and followed this with a programme of drumming, dancing and singing. I think you will agree that the children did an amazing job. It was nice to meet all the younger siblings (future Children’s House children) too.
Before the party, some of the children went swimming at Poplar Baths and other children decorated the playground ready for our celebrations. Children also shared stories of their own celebrations at home.
Thank you all for coming today and making it such a happy occasion, we feel privileged to work in such a wonderful community.
Eid Party 2019
Monday 3rd June 2019
Welcome back to nursery, we hope that you all had a lovely half term and enjoyed the nice weather.
The children all returned happily and were busy talking about what they had done in the holidays. They were also busy practicing for their performance at the Eid party and some children were acting out celebrations in their role-play. The day finished with an energetic after school dance club.
Tonight we will post on the website which day we will be closed for Eid; we will do this just as soon as it is announced. The Eid party will be the day after the closure.
Eid Mubarak to everyone celebrating and we wish you a lovely day.
We have a busy half-term ahead so do refer to your letter with the upcoming dates; there are many exciting things planned for the weeks ahead.
Making Eid cards and rehearsing our lines
Friday 24th May 2019
As you look back through the blog, you will see what an exciting few weeks we have just had. We welcomed visitors from the Commonwealth, visited museums and farms, started a new after school sports club, learnt all about dinosaurs and fossils, planted flowers and vegetables and learnt which primary school the older children will be moving on to and had fun at forest school.
Today we welcomed speech and language therapists from UCL, we are taking part in valuable research into young children’s understanding of and use of metaphor.
Have a lovely half term holiday. We look forward to seeing you all back on Monday 3rd June.