Kia Ora, welcome to our June newsletter. Enjoy reading about all the learning and experiences that have been taking place at Early Years Cranford Street. We are so enjoying seeing all the deep and meaningful relationships that are forming between our tamariki.
We are excited to share that Heidi, a very experienced and passionate Early Childhood teacher is coming to join the Early Years whānau here. She is starting on Monday and is bringing her little daughter Ava too. Look out for her friendly face and please introduce yourself and help to make her feel welcome. Heidi will be spending her days with the three year olds down in the Preschool room. Now that we have all 4 classrooms up and running it might be a good idea to familiarise yourself with the classroom names: 0-2 years (Nursery), 2-3 years (Explorers), 3-4 years (Preschool) and 4-5 years (Extension). Next week the sign in sheets and in future the newsletter will reflect these new classrooms.
We have been learning about Matariki this month. The children have been reading stories, singing songs and creating special stars in honor of this celebration. For those of you who don't know Matariki is a cluster of stars that signifies the beginning of a new year. It is a time of remembering the dead and celebrating new life. An interesting fact is that you cannot see the Matariki stars in the South Island only the North.
Our little nursery has continued to grow, develop and evolve over the past month. We said goodbye to Jaimee our student teacher and welcomed Rachel from the University of Canterbury. Rachel will be on placement here for 5 weeks. In the past month a few of our older nursery friends have turned two and have begun their days over in the Explorers room. We have also welcomed several new families into our nursery whānau. It is delightful to see our nursery friends continuing to feel a sense of belonging here in this place, and trust that they have kind, caring teachers that will follow their rhythms and meet their changing needs and interests.
Here are some photos of our friends engaged in different activities and experiences in the nursery environment. We really do have the cutest kids in town!
We have some beautiful little artists in our nursery. They so enjoy exploring and experimenting with different art opportunities and experiences on offer.
Our infants and toddlers have had the opportunity to engage in messy play. Te Whāriki explains the importance of children having "the confidence to choose and experiment with materials, to play around with ideas, and to explore actively with all the senses." What fun!
Our children love to be involved in the baking and cooking process here at Early Years. The nursery children helped prepare some delicious pikelet mixture ready to cook for afternoon tea.
As mentioned earlier in the year in a newsletter the children have continued to express their love for music and movement. They have been listening to a wide range of music from the 70's, 80's, 90's and 2000's. If your child has a favorite CD or song we welcome you to bring it in for us to play. Kim has also been teaching the children at meal times our 'Kai in a basket' song in sign language.
Building on the concept of the 100 languages of children the tamariki in the Preschool have had the opportunity to discover and develop different ways to be creative and expressive. Beautiful masterpieces continue to be produced from our budding artists.
We are planning our next school visit to St Albans for next week. It will be a great opportunity for our four year olds to learn about the school environment, build a familiarity with what happens in a classroom and go on an excursion within the local community. A St Albans teacher also came into visit our centre this week have a look around. The children sang her a song and chatted away while they patiently waited for their afternoon tea. In credit to our wonderful teachers she was very impressed with the centre and the structures that have been put in place to ensure school readiness.
A very popular area in the preschool that has continued to grow and evolve over the past couple months is the family play area. The teachers have moved the room around multiple times to extend this interest and give space for it to grow and develop. There has been a lot of discussion in the preschool around babies as Amelia is pregnant and a couple of our beautiful Mum's also. The children have been expressing their ideas and building on connections between their homes, the centre and community through meaningful role plays. To build on this interest further, Heidi, Jemima's Mum is going to come and bring in her midwife equipment to listen to Amelia's little boys heart beat in the next week or two.
Earlier in the month Poppa Neil and Mel helped to build a couple more bikes and a scooter. They had lots of willing helpers who were keen to get involved with the construction and then with trying the bikes and scooter out by zooming top speed around the playground.
Group times have continued to be meaningful times of learning and fun for our friends here at Early Years Cranford Street. The preschool teachers really work hard to plan exciting, fun and relevant structured learning moments for the children. It is has been neat to see children re-enacting group times with their peers as they take turns to be the teacher.
In the four year old room the children have been creating 'Christchurch City'. This idea has been completely child led and has blossomed into a project that they have all taken ownership of. It is well worth a trip down the corridor to see the evolving city that is taking place outside the four year old classroom.
Dear Parents and Caregivers
Starting in July our older friends will be participating in the 'Hoop with Heart' physical education programme run by Bernadette Smith. This will be funded by the centre and sounds like a lot of fun! More details will be provided closer to the time.
It is fast approaching school holiday time. If your child/ren are going to be away during this time please let us know ASAP. If you would like to use your child's 50% holiday discount please let Stacey know.
Just a reminder please don't bring any egg based food to the centre as we have a child who is severely allergic. For example: Quiche, Boiled eggs, egg sandwiches etc. Egg is baking is fine.
Update: We have a centre cellphone that we have now decided to make available for general use, not just for emergencies. You are welcome to text if your child is going to be absent or late but the phone is a dinosaur so please don't expect lengthy replies. The number is 0221951603. Please put this number in your phone as it is also very useful in the event of a power outage.
Please label your child's clothes, food for the fridge and drink bottles. We have vivids that you are welcome to use if you forget in the morning. Due to our numbers increasing this is vital! Food without labels will not be given to children to prevent mistakes. Here is a great website to get labels printed: https://www.stuckonyou.nz/affiliate/fundraiser/EYLABELIT