This time of year is always magical at preschool and Christmas always comes early to Kempshott Under Fives. Christmas songs snuck on to our playlist in mid November, and preschool has been been filled with glitter, Christmas sparkle and children making wonderful festive creations for the last few weeks.
We have finished off a very different 2020 with a lovely Christmassy month. The children decorated our tree, practiced their numbers with a daily countdown on our advent calendar and our resident Elf on the shelf arrived too. He has got up to lots of mischief in preschool, much to the delight of the children!
And we couldn’t have Christmas without a party, so on our last day of term we threw a lovely Christmas party for all of the children – complete with a socially distanced Christmas singsong to families over a zoom call. So although families couldn't be with us in person this year, they still joined in over the computer airwaves!
We have exciting new plans for 2021, so December has also been a chance for us to trial our new Tuesday sessions. In January we are introducing structured Tuesday sessions with some of the most popular activities we do throughout the week. Tuesdays will now have less toys and a specific focus on messy play, outdoor phonics and preschool yoga.
- We have been doing preschool yoga sessions for some time so we already know the children love it! Yoga has many proven benefits for preschool age children, it helps children manage anxiety, it improves children’s emotional regulation, boosts their self esteem, increases body awareness and mindfulness, enhances children’s concentration and memory and helps develop strength and flexibility
- Messy play is another firm favourite, not only is it great fun, it provides children with exciting tactile and sensory experiences which improves their curiosity, imagination and exploration skills and encourages communication and language development. It also supports children to play independently.
- Phonics is so adaptable that it can be taught in a number of different ways and taking it outside can increase the children’s attention span and their willingness to learn. Learning in the fresh air, with natural light, smells and sounds has proven to be more enjoyable, as well as rewarding for children. In the UK it is recommended that phonics should be the first way to introduce reading skills to children.
We are also very excited to announce this month that our part time staff member Alison Cuss will now be with us for four days a week. Alison is a Speech and Language Specialist and does an amazing job with individual and group work in our preschool. Speech, language and communication are vital life skills for children and allow them to express themselves and engage in conversations, understand instructions and get the most out of their education and life experiences. During covid, many services for speech and language have ceased and face-to-face appointments have been delayed, which obviously impacts the children's development. Alison is vitally important for us at this time to fill the gap from those services so we’re delighted that she is now with us for 4 days a week. If you would like advice or support on speech and language in your child’s preschool journey, please let us know and Alison will be happy to chat to you.
HOPE YOU ALL HAVE A VERY RELAXING CHRISTMAS AND HERE'S HOPING FOR A BRIGHTER 2021!