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Welcome to week eight. Here is a message for all the boys and girls from a nursery friend!

Still image for this video
It was lovely to chat to so many of my families this week. I also loved chatting to the kids too. I am so glad that everyone is safe and well and the kids have settled into their new routines. I will be phoning my final preschool families and underage families on Monday and Tuesday this week. I will leave a voicemail if you are unable to take my call. If you have missed my call, send an email with a more convenient day and time and I will call again.
I have added photographs from the last two weeks onto our nursery page. Please keep sending photographs and please take time to show the photos to your children. I love seeing what the kids have been up to and I know Mrs Madden, Mrs Salt and Miss Thompson do too!
As always, if you need any support, wish to ask a question or just want to catch up, send me an email and I will get back to you.
Love and best wishes,
Joanne Hamilton

Here is another message for the boys and girls

Keep it practical


From chatting to families this week, it was great to hear of the progress so many of the children are making. In nursery, for so many of the children their learning really seems to take off in the the third term. We see children starting to read, write and their understanding of number all seems to come together. 
There are some great resources in sites like Twinkl, but please try to avoid having your child sitting working at formal worksheets. All research shows that children learn best, with greater understanding and learning will be retained when using concrete objects and working at a practical level. 
Even in Primary 1, when your child’s formal education begins the curriculum is delivered mainly through practical activities. A worksheet may only used at the end of a lesson, once the child has completed lots of practical work and the teacher is confident that the understanding is there. 
If your child is still struggling to write their name, don’t have them trying over and over again. The chances are they are struggling, as they don’t yet have the pen control required. Take a step back and get working on their fine motor skills using dough, stickers, scissors, ripping paper. I am sure the next time you try, good progress and improvement will be evident. 
All number can be taught through games while having fun.  Any toy can be used for counting, sorting, making sets and for comparisons. If you would like your child to practise writing numbers play hop scotch, get them to draw a car park or number their train tracks etc.

Just remember they are only 4 once and all too soon your children will be sitting at a desk. Let them be children and let them play!


Virtual Sports Day

If you fancy getting active why not sign up for the virtual sports day. 

Sophia is helping Maghaberry move up the leader board!

Let’s start getting our kids prepared!

Early number sets the foundation for learning more advanced number concepts later on.  Patterning is one of those important early skills. 

How do we teach patterns?   We can notice them, hear them, and physically make them.  Here’s a simple progression you might want to use when you teach patterns:

  • ABAB  (red, blue, red, blue)
  • ABC (car, truck, plane, car, truck, plane)
  • AABB (crayon, crayon, pencil, pencil, crayon, crayon, pencil, pencil)
  • AAB  (Cheerio, Cheerio, raisin, Cheerio, Cheerio, raisin)
  • ABB (stomp, clap, clap, stomp, clap, clap

In nursery we begin by making a pattern and seeing if the child can simply copy.

The next stage is asking them “What comes next?” Can they continue the pattern.

Finally can your child make their own repeating pattern? 
Once the children have made a pattern we encourage them to say it out loud- Red, Blue, Red, Blue

Don’t forget to use your patterns as a great opportunity for counting and also sorting. 

Pattern Activities

1. Make a pattern with toys. In nursery we love to make patterns with Duplos. Making patterns with toy cars is fun too.

2. Make a pattern by doing something.  “Let’s make a pattern with how we move.  Jump.  Step.  Jump.  Step.”

3. Make a sound pattern.  BANG, tap, tap, BANG, tap, tap. Start out by making a pattern and having your child copy you.

4.Make patterns with stickers.

5.Create patterns with objects from nature. 

6.You can make a pattern with everyday household objects.

  • Pen, pencil, pen, pencil.
  • Fork, knife, spoon, fork, knife spoon.
  • Big book, small book, big book, small book.

7.Collect and make patterns with lids and bottle tops.

8.Draw simple patterns

9.Make patterns by sliding balls of play dough onto a straw. 

10.Use coins to make patterns.

11.Notice patterns you see everyday- the tiles on your floor, your wallpaper etc 

Early reading skill- encourage your child to read the pattern from left to right. Point to each Duplo as they name each colour.

Lego pattern cards

More bottle top activities