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Summer Newsletter – April 2016 Dear Parents

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Summer Newsletter – April 2016

Dear Parents,

Welcome back everyone and a very warm welcome to our new starters!

We hope you all had a fun filled Easter break! A big thank you for our lovely Easter cards and gifts, they were very much appreciated. The summer term is always an exciting and busy one, with lots of events to look forward to so please make a note of all our diary dates.

This term we will be learning about Life Cycles as we will be hatching chicks in our incubator and butterflies from their eggs. This will lead us to our exciting preschool outing to Boydells Farm in June.

Spring has sprung! We have been learning all about New Life as it appears in the world around us, looking for changes in the garden and on the school grounds. We will be spending time outside and staying active during the summer months.

If anyone has any plant pots, seeds, cuttings etc. that you would like to share then we would really welcome them to brighten up our environment. Caring for plants and flowers is an important part of the Montessori curriculum and for the children to learn how to take responsibility for living things.

Grow your own pizza! – This term we will be starting an exciting project with the children – we will be planting tomato, basil and rocket seeds that the children will be able to observe and watch grow . This will give the children experience of how we grow our own produce. In order to do this we would appreciate donations of large plastic flower pots and seeds. Thank you.

Sports Relief Challenge -Well done to all of the children who took part in Sport Relief on the 22nd March – they were amazing and we have raised lots of money for charity! The final total was £450! Fantastic! Thank you everyone!

Nursery Room News! – This term we will be planting our bulbs, watching them grow for spring and we will continue singing lots of songs and role play with our song "props" which all the babies and toddlers love!

As the weather warms up we will be spending more time outside enjoying our new mud kitchen. Please could parents ensure that they put lots of spare clothes in your child’s bag. Thank you.
School Photographs-Our lovely school photographer, Jacqui Cunningham, will be coming into the preschool on Friday 22ndApril, 9am to take photos. If your child attends on Friday and you would like sibling portraits please stay at drop off time for photos. If your child does not attend this day but you would like photos taken please arrive at 10am.

Preschool Trip – Thursday 23rd June at Boydells Farm, Wethersfield -This year, our trip will be to Boydells Farm. This always provides a fun and educational outing for the children and parents alike and is an important part of the Montessori and Early Years Foundation Stage education. This is a wonderful opportunity for you to share the pre-school experience with your child and for him or her to share with you what they have learned about the farm. We will meet at 9.30am for 10.00am start. The children will be able to have a real ‘hands on’ experience with the animals on the farm and we’ll hopefully see some baby ones too. Please bring a picnic with you for lunch so that we can join together at the picnic area to finish off the day. A letter detailing the day has been emailed out. If you require a paper copy please speak to Miss Anna or Miss Libby. Please note that the preschool will be closed that day as the staff will be at Boydells Farm.

Fathers Week - Monday 20th – Friday 25th June - We will be welcoming all fathers’, grandfathers and uncles into the pre-school to spend some time with the children. It will be fun to do some activities with the children such as den building, football, reading stories etc.

Toys – Please can you encourage your child to leave their toys at home, this includes dolls and small cars. Bringing toys in can create unnecessary distress for your child when they lose them or if another child wants to play with it. We understand the young children may need to bring in a comfort toy which is fine, but we would ask that any play toys be left at home.

End of Term Concert! Monday 18th July 11.00am

The concert will begin promptly at 11.00am when the children will perform some songs followed by a presentation of certificates to our leavers. Afterwards we would love you and the children to stay for a picnic lunch (weather permitting). Please could Monday children arrive as normal at 9.00am. Please could all other parents/carers and children arrive at 10.45am ready for the concert. Please deliver your child to the classroom and key person at that time.

We will be running the rest of the day as normal from 1pm for children who attend on Monday afternoon. Please take your child to the classroom at this time and leave them with a staff member. If you take your child home with you early please let a member of staff know so that we can mark our register accordingly. Thank you.

Mobile Phones- Please could we remind parents, carers and visitors to refrain from using any mobile phones or tablets whilst in the preschool.
Sun Hats and Sun-Cream- As the weather warms up please could parents remember to apply sun cream to their child before arriving at preschool. Please could parents also supply a named bottle if your child stays all day and we will top up sun protection as necessary.

Staff - We would like to welcome two new members of staff, Miss Steph and Miss Minnie to our team.

Transition to Primary School- The exciting next adventure of ‘big school’ is soon approaching!

For our older children this is the term where we really focus on the skills and confidence needed for primary school. We will be introducing the children to more adult initiated and structured activities, to develop their concentration and listening skills. At home, playing games with rules and asking your child to follow several step instructions can really support this.

We will also be working on dressing skills and self-organisation, preparing for those exciting PE lessons! Please encourage your child to dress themselves and put their shoes on independently. Miss Anna will be coordinating transition arrangements for all of our school leavers. After half term we will start having show and tell time for our school leavers so that they have the opportunity to share their new school uniform and book bags with the other children.

Early Years Pupil Premium – The government has introduced some additional funding which may be available for some children. If you receive certain benefits including child tax credit and working tax credit, your child may be eligible to receive this funding for the preschool. It will enable us to provide more resources in the preschool. Please see our website for additional information or speak to Miss Anna.

Forest School sessions – These will take place on Wednesdays, for this half of the term, for our school leavers only. To enable the children to have a positive experience at Forest School we ask that they wear old clothes comprising of long trousers and come equipped with wellies, waterproof jacket, sunhat and sunscreen and plenty to drink. We would also ask that they bring a simple packed lunch as we will be picnicking in the woods!


A few reminders to help the day go smoothly…

If you need to contact our staff or you need to inform the preschool of any planned absences for your child or any illnesses please can you call 01371 831902 and either press option 3 to speak to the nursery room or option 4 for the preschool room or you can use the following email address:

If you are calling to inform staff of your child’s absence from the day’s session please telephone after 8.50am.

You can also use My Montessori Child to send messages to our staff but unfortunately they are unable to reply via this system.

If you need to contact our school bursar regarding invoice or other financial matters please telephone 01763 836996 or email

My Montessori Child - Please remember to log in each week to My Montessori Child and read about what your child has been doing. You can also post us messages via the site if you would like to share something with us about your child. www.mymontessorichild/parents

Children’s Bags- Please could all parents & carers supply the following in the children’s bags; at least 2 x complete change of clothes, 1 x pack of wipes, 2 x plastic carrier bags or a drawstring swimming bag for wet/dirty clothes and warm/ waterproof outer wear. If your child is potty training please supply extra clothes and underwear and dress your child in clothes that are easy for them to pull up and down. We would really appreciate all the children wearing shoes/ trainers that are easy to put on and off independently e.g. velcro fastening, and that all your child’s belongings are clearly labelled, this includes comforters and muslins. Please could we also remind parents to label all items of clothing belonging to your child, even spare clothes in their school bag so that we can reunited items with their owners!

Lunchboxes and Hot Meals- Please make sure that all your child’s containers are clearly marked with his/her name. Any food that requires heating must be supplied in a clearly marked microwavable container. Please ensure that if your child has food to be heated that his/her lunchbox is placed on the Hot Lunch box trolley. This will speed up the lunch time service. Thank you.

Allergies – We are a ‘Nut Free’ zone and as such no items containing nuts should be placed in lunchboxes e.g. peanut butter or snacking nuts. Thank you.

Risky Play! As part of our staff continuous professional development, some of the team attended a training day looking at Risky Play. The day got us all thinking about not only the children in our care but also our approach with our own children.

Although the term ‘risk-taking’ often has negative connotations, the reality is that the willingness to engage in some risky activities provides opportunities to learn new skills, try new behaviours and ultimately reach our potential. Challenge and risk, in particular during outdoor play, allows the children to test the limits of their physical, intellectual and social development.

One thing we did all agree on was that we need to support the children in understanding that risk can be positive. Within our prepared environment we offer them opportunities, those of climbing, using ropes, hammers and nails, real things such as glass and ceramic, forest school and lots of problem solving.

With this in mind we reviewed the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum that all your children work towards and identified how it supports the thinking of risky play.

The following statements were found:-

Through play in a secure but challenging environment with effective adult support, children can take risks and make mistakes’

being over protected can prevent children from learning about possible dangers and about how to protect themselves from harm’

Health and Well-being identifies one of the key challenges and dilemmas for practitioners as ‘ensuring safety without stopping reasonable risk taking’

Practitioners should give particular attention to building children’s confidence to take manageable risks in their play.’

When your child joined the setting, we committed to helping them build a foundation on which they could gain the skills they will need to help them in their future development.

One of those most important skills is that of taking risk. If we can allow them freedom to take part in risky play and risky decisions with a guiding hand now, it will give them the confidence to make those risky decisions independently later on in life.

By gaining confidence in taking risk in their play during their early years they are not just building their self-esteem for the here and now, they will be happier in attacking new challenges in learning throughout their lives.

As part of our commitment to this ethos over the next term, your children will be participating in the completion of risk/benefit assessments of the equipment and areas or learning. We hope in doing this we can start talking to the children about risk and danger at their individual levels of understanding.

An interesting website for parents

A safe environment is one where safety is not seen as safety from all possible harm, but offers safety to explore, experiment, try things out and take risk.‘ Helen Tovey

Summer Diary Dates

School Photographs – Friday 22nd April – morning – all children welcome

Monday 2nd May – Bank Holiday – Closed

Monday 30th May – Friday 3rd June– Half TermClosed

Monday 20th – Friday 25th June – Fathers’ Week

(All fathers, uncles and grandfathers welcome)

Preschool Trip – Thursday 23rd June at Boydells Farm, Wethersfield

Monday 18th July – End of Term Concert

Wednesday 20th July – END OF TERM

Website- Please remember to use this site for up to date information about the preschool

Preschool Term Dates 2016-2017


TERM STARTS - Monday 5th September

HALF TERM - Monday 24th - Friday 28th October (inc)
TERM ENDS - Friday 16th December


TERM STARTS - Thursday 5th January 

HALF TERM - Monday 13th - Friday 17th February (inc)
TERM ENDS - Friday 31st March


TERM STARTS - Tuesday 18th April

BANK HOLIDAY - Monday 1st May
HALF TERM - Monday 29th May - Friday 2nd June (inc)
TERM ENDS - Friday 21st July
Please note that these dates may be subject to change.


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