Acorn Class Blog

Acorns turn into Superheroes to save the world!

This week the Acorn Preschool children received a letter from the Joker, telling them that he had captured all the superheroes and no one could stop him from ruling  the world. The Acorns were very quick to decide that they must become superheroes, and must try to save them. This meant that the children worked hard to design superhero capes, make shields and practice their super powers so that they would be super strong.

 

There have been lots of rescues and traps set. The children have built super hideouts and have made many phone calls to try to gain the help of other superheroes. Our books of the week were ‘Supertato’, ‘Superworm’ and also ‘Super Duck’ – 3 different superheroes, who all work hard to help save others.

Also this week, we discovered that the tadpoles that had kindly been donated by Ruby’s family had grown legs and were slowly turning into frogs. By Thursday we were ready to release the frog back into the school pond. Hopefully this frog will continue to provide us with frogspawn so that we can collect it for years to come.

Stars of the Day this week were Jasper, Liza and Poppy – well done to you all.

Buzzy, busy bees!

This week in the Acorn Preschool the children have been focusing on bees.  The book of the week was ‘The Very Greedy Bee’. The children have loved sharing what they know about bees, as well as learning that they drink nectar from flowers and turn this into tasty honey.  They also learnt that they live in a hive with the Queen bee, that lays all the eggs.  The children have used their creative skills to draw, make, decorate and paint bees.  Also we made some honey flapjack and enjoyed some bread and honey – which they all found was yummy!

        

To use our physical motor skills, the children have created minibeasts out of salt dough. Worms, dragonflies, bees and butterflies – they all look fantastic!

By Tuesday, the caterpillars had completed their transformation, and were emerging as butterflies – the children have been so fascinated by this transformation.  By Friday, we had named our butterflies Catboy, Wonderwoman, Daisy and Lovely Flower, then we set them free.  A few more minibeasts visited us in the Nursery, including a grasshopper and a large hairy spider.

        

On Wednesday we enjoyed our final visit to Rosie on her farm. This time we were in the meadows bug hunting. Using large nets, the children swept for minibeasts in the long tickly grass – we found lots of ladybirds, butterflies, a caterpillar and lots of other jumpy creatures.

 

The children have worked very hard this year on developing their phonic skills, so that they can recognise the letter shapes, which represent each sound. They have also built on their fine motor skills to support them with controlling a pencil to form the letters that they wish to write. In these final few weeks of Nursery, before the children move on to Reception, we are so pleased to see the writing that the children are now beginning to produce – including writing CVC words (e.g. cat, mop, ten, peg etc), and in recording lists of words to describe what they say (e.g. describing a bee) – all independently.  All children are so keen to write their name, either from memory or by copying the letter shapes – and they are doing so well.

 

The children are so eager to record in print, and so should be encouraged to just write the sounds they hear (even if they are not the correct spellings) as this is the start of early writing skills. We just encourage them to record the key sounds they hear when sounding out the words they wish to write.  For example, when trying to write ‘butterfly’ – the children have recorded ‘butafly’ which is a very good phonetic attempt at spelling it. Please could you encourage the children to do this at home too. In this way, they do not get hung up on things being ‘spelt’ correctly, and work on applying their early phonic skills.

   

Due to the extreme hot weather the children have had great fun spending lots of time making dens and shelters to help them to hide away from the sun.

The Stars of the Day this week were Max, Harvey and Molly – well done to you all.

The Acorn Minibeast Explorers!

This week the Acorn preschool children have been closely watching the caterpillars and were really surprised to see that they had almost completely turned into a chrysalis over the weekend.

 

We have continued to learn the story of ‘The Very Hungry Caterpillar’ and the children are now able to tell the story on their own, using actions and a story map. To develop their storytelling skills, we have innovated the story, and added some of our own features – so now we have ‘The Very Hungry Spider.’

 

Use this story map with your children at home and see if they can remember the main events of the story and retell them in their own words.  Also, encourage them to alter the details of the story to maybe be about a very hungry lion, or puppy.

We have also learnt the complete ‘Caterpillar’ song too -   ‘There’s a tiny caterpillar on a leaf” which explains the different stages of the caterpillars life to the children.

In the creative area the children have been making caterpillars using paper chains and painting caterpillars too.

       

On Monday all the children were hunting for minibeasts – no stone was left unturned, until we found woodlice, millipedes and spiders. The children have been comparing how they are the same and how they are different, and we have noticed that lots of them have antennae (or antlers as some of the children like to say!)

 

As the children were so excited about rockets last week, some of the children have enjoyed using junk materials to create their own rockets. I wonder where their rockets will take them? Try to read stories which include rockets with the children at home – see if they can think of their own adventures.

This week the children have been reviewing their knowledge about shapes – we checked up on our 2D shape knowledge, and then linked this with the 3D shapes. All the children were loving exploring the classroom environment to discover 3D shapes in action. Encourage your child to notice shapes in the environment around them, name the shapes they can see and discuss about if it is curved or flat .

Stars of the day this week were Finlay, Ellie and Elizabeth. Well done to you all!

The tiny caterpillars get bigger and bigger!

This week in the Acorn Preschool, we have many exciting experiences.

 

We started the week thinking about all the fruit we had explored the previous week, considering how it grows. We were not sure how a pineapple or kiwi grows, so we asked Google on the computer to help us out! The children also enjoyed making tally charts about which fruit they liked the best.

On Monday all the Acorn children enjoyed taking part in sports day. They were so good and were not too put off by the enormous crowd that gathered to watch them!

 

       

As our tiny class caterpillars have started to grow, our book of the week was ‘The Very Hungry Caterpillar’ – which is a favourite for all the children. As part of our Talk For Writing focus, the children have started to learn this story with actions, and we will continue next week until we know it off by heart. Next week we will also have a go at writing a different version of the story too. Some children have already started with writing their own version...

 

On Thursday, we harvested our home-grown potatoes. The children really enjoyed digging through the compost to find the ‘treasure’ hidden inside. We had not so many potatoes this year – I think the sunny weather and forgetting to water them has not helped!! So on Friday we enjoyed them roasted!

 

Stars of the Day this week were Faith, Berfin, Lily and Zak – well done to you all.

Honda’s Surprise – what a fruity week!

This week the Acorn Preschool children have explored the story of ‘Handa’s Surprise’ which involves a young African girl taking some fruit to her friend in the next village, only to find a surprise when she gets there! The children loved playing the role of Handa as she goes on her walk, and being the animals who steal the fruit from her basket!

 

As the book focused on the theme of different fruit, we have spent the week exploring all different types of fruit. We have developed our vocabulary in naming and describing fruit and have taste tested each of the different fruits from the story. The children definitely liked the pineapple and mango the best.  On Friday, all the children made fruit kebabs!

 

   

 

The children have exploring pastels this week, drawing pictures of fruit. The shop this week was selling lots of different fruit and vegetables too.  As Handa loses fruit from her basket, this has helped us with developing our maths through working out how many left.

 

In the creative area the children have been amazed by the magic of creating fold-over butterfly painting. They love to see the colours created when the paint mixes together.  This has tied in nicely with the arrival of 5 tiny caterpillars that arrived on Thursday. More about them next week… (Focus: The Very Hungry Caterpillar)

The song of the week was ‘I’m a little tea pot’ – practice this song with your child at home and see if they remember the words and actions.

 

 

Stars of the Day this week are Demi, Charlie, Aleeya-Rae and Evie – well done to you all.

What a lovely Wedding!

This week the Acorn Preschool children explored celebrations linked to weddings. After watching Megan and Harry get married at the weekend, the children were full of words to describe what they had seen. Lots of new vocabulary was explored and explained, and the book of the week ‘The Scarecrows Wedding’ also helped with expanding our words.

     

 

The children have designed wedding dresses,  written wedding invitations and made lists of what they would like at the wedding. The children designed and made their own crowns too. Some children even acted out their own role play of Princes rescuing and waking up the sleeping Princesses.

 

On Wednesday, we enjoyed a visit to the Grosvenor Museum to meet Millie and Morris Mouse. They helped us to explore all around an old house and also to explore lots of old and new objects in the kitchen and washer room. The children were very well behaved, but exhausted because there were a lot of steps for us to keep going up and down!

 

 

On Thursday, everyone dressed up ready for a wedding, with lots of Prince Charmings, Princesses, brides and grooms and lots of lovely guests too. We enjoyed a cake and drink as a picnic tea party out on the grass.

 

Song of the week was ‘Tommy Thumb” which the children have used to explore finger separation. Sing this at home with your child and see if they can encourage their fingers to stand up individually!

 

Stars of the day this week were Robyn, Callum and Joey – well done to you all.

HAPPY HOLIDAYS

We would like to wish you all a lovely week with your children - we look forward to seeing you for the final term in Acorn Preschool.

Hurray for Fish

Last week the Acorn Preschool children explored animals under the sea. We have loved reading the story ‘Tiddler’ – which gave us lots of new experiences with sea creatures. Eels, lobsters, jellyfish, sharks and octopus all feature in this story.

To build on the interest of under the sea animals, the children have created artwork through drawing, painting and collage of brightly coloured fish, similar to the story ‘Hooray for Fish’. There are lots of lovely rhyming words in this book.

 

 

In the maths area, the children have explored numbers through a magnetic fishing game and also counting how many altogether through the fish bowl game.

     

The children have even had a go at expressing themselves through movement to music – as different under sea animals, including jellyfish, shark and octopus.

 

As the weather has been warmer and the sun has been out, the children have enjoyed lots of outdoor play. This week we have helped to grow the various plants, practiced our weaving skills with ribbons and even built an aquarium with sharks!

Song of the week was ‘Head, shoulders, knees and toes’ which the children have explored naming parts of their body.  They love it when this song gets faster and faster.

 

Stars of the day last week were Oscar, Tristan, Poppy, Ruby and Myles – well done to you all.

One Child One Seed

Our book of the week was ‘One Child, One Seed’ which is an African counting story. As the story has a focus on number, it has helped us with developing maths skills throughout the week.

We have worked on our concept of 1 more than each number up to 10. Ask you child to tell you one more and see if they can remember or work it out. Some children even started early addition work, by splitting a group of coloured teddies into 2 groups, saying how many were in each group (or part) and how many altogether (the whole). This is a simple activity, but helps the children to recognise that 2 groups can be combined to make a large group.

The children also used the story to develop their writing skills. They described what they noticed about the book from the illustration and then wrote down the letter sounds they could hear in the words they were saying. It also helped us to notice things that are the same and things that are different to our lives. For example, we noticed that their skin was brown, they had to walk a long way to get to the shop, and they even managed to carry pumpkins on their heads!

 

Our song of the week was ‘1, 2, 3, 4, 5, Once I caught a fish’ and this has helped us to develop our understanding of counting in order and recognising numbers. See if they can sing this song at home with you.

 

Whilst we have been outside for large parts of this week, the children have been building dens, playing and exploring with water and building too. The water was brought to a new level of fun, through the use of drain pipes and our water wall – the children had to puzzle out how to get the water to travel where they wanted it to go. This is such an enjoyable experience for all children, and is developing their large motor skills as they move around.

 

 

Stars of the day this week were Freya, Harvey, Jamie and Eva-Rose – well done to you all.

Fee fi fo fum -Giants in the Acorn Preschool

This week the Acorn Preschool children have been exploring the topic of growing through the book of the week ‘Jack and the Beanstalk’. The children have loved acting the story out, playing the different characters. We have had lots of ‘Fee, fi, fo, fum’ sounds in the Nursery. The story has supported us with measuring, as the giants boots were left in the Nursery, so we drew round the boots and then measured with cubes. We then did the same for our own feet. Encourage your child to use language linked to measurement at home – including tall, taller, tallest, short, shorter, shortest – this will help them to build their knowledge about comparing the heights of things.

 

       

To support our children with building on their knowledge of growth, they have planted peas in bags, which are hanging in our classroom. We will be watching them to see what happens. They were completely independent in putting the items together to plant their seeds.

      

 

We are focusing on the children’s’ pencil control. For those children who are ready they sign in by writing their name as often as possible, with varying amounts of support. For those children who have built the strength for pencil control, they are being challenged to demonstrate through recording numbers and letters in a variety of ways through their play. Please encourage your child to record any letters and numbers they know when at home.

The children have been encouraged to record through labeling, using the sounds they can hear, to make posters to catch the giant, to write about fairytale characters they can see in a picture, to draw pictures of the characters in the story and also to write their name label for their pea seed.

 

Other children, who are not ready to formally write their name, are working on their pencil control through drawing simple lines and shapes. These children continue to be supported through dough gym and ‘Superdraw’, building on muscle strength.

    

Also, this week we have been working on developing oral story telling with the children. This helps them to develop their language skills and builds on the structure and length of the sentences that they say. Using 2 simple picture cards, the children have been asked to make up a story, saying what is happening.  For some children, they were able to retell the whole of the Jack and the Beanstalk story, using wonderful story language to give all the details, other children will share a very brief version with some key parts that they remember – they all however can retell something. Ask them to tell you the story at home and see what they come up with.

Stars of the Day this week were Olivia, Ellie, Max and Robyn – well done to you all!

The Circus comes to Acorn Preschool

This week the Acorns have loved focusing on the circus. With strongmen, acrobats, trapeze artists and clowns – there was so much to enjoy!

On Monday, the children made posters and sold tickets to the circus, then they got busy with setting up a circus ring in which they could perform.

       

The book of the week developed our love of the circus – ‘The Singing Mermaid’  by Julia Donaldson describing how a mermaid, who loves to sing, was tricked into joining the circus, but soon found that the Ringmaster was not as kind as he made out to be. However, the circus friends help her to find a way to escape and return back to the bay by walking on her hands!

The children have been creating circus posters, labeling circus pictures, combining materials to make clown faces and moving their bodies in response to the circus music.  The circus acts were improved further when we moved outside  - with children walking on stilts, juggling and tightrope walking.

We have also been looking at emotions and describing how we feel, and why we feel this way.  We have used the sentence starter ‘I feel…..because…’ It would be really useful if you could encourage your child to express how they are feeling and why they feel this way at home. This not only supports them with recognising different emotions, but it also builds on their speaking skills.

Stars of the Day this week were Riley, Evie, Liza, Molly and Finlay – well done to you all.