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Thursday, 28 January 2010

Preschool Interests

The children were showing a big interest in the growth stages of frogs after Rachael (the teacher) read a book called, "Big Changes For A Tiny Tadpole," to the children at mat time.  To extend the children's interest, I bought in three chrysalises from my own garden and made a 'home' for them to stay in - a box.  I discussed with the children how a butterfly develops through the four stages of metamorphosis - egg, caterpillar, chrysalis and an adult butterfly and the children can watch them grow and understand how a black and orange butterfly emerges from a chrysalis.  From this activity, the children can investigate and compare the butterfly and human life cycles and help the children connect math and science too.   Even our resident cat gets into the curriculum at Bayfield!!!!  See attached photos.

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Music Class - 27.1.2010

Today we started by sharing the instruments we had brought from home.  Joe, Curtis and I all had ukuleles, Evie had a harmonica, Kairo had a drum and Charlotte had bells, a mini xylophone, two little trumpets and a recorder.  She very kindly shared these with Issy, Luke, Ben and Thomas who didn't have an instrument.  We took turns standing in front of the group, introducing our instrument and showing our friends what it could do.  We also talked about how moving your fingers on the ukulele strings produces different sounds or 'notes'.
This week's 'So-Me' story, 'So-Me and the Spider', was about how sounds can be loud or soft, low or high.  We practiced singing our names like So-Me does (ask your child to demonstrate!) and also chanting our names in time with a steady beat.
The kids were delighted to get to play instrument bingo where I called out the names of the instruments and they had to match them on their cards.  Once again I was impressed with their knowledge!
I showed the group some sheet music and explained how notes that are written high up on the lines are higher pitched than ones that are written low on the lines.  We practiced this concept by looking for high and low notes in other parts of the music, and singing them with our squeaky high voices or our deep low voices.
We finished up the class with some rhythm games (I pat a simple beat, they copy me).
The children were a bit restless today (no doubt due to the hot weather!) and struggled to concentrate at times.  However, they all went away buzzing about what they had learnt, and hopefully you will get to hear all about it from them too.
If you would like to help your child further develop what we learnt today, you could practice singing with your high and low voices together, and also discuss how your normal voice fits in between these two.
Encourage your child to sing their name to you, or sing phrases and get them to echo (e.g. 'It is dinner time', 'I love chocolate', anything really!)
Thanks Laura

Wednesday, 27 January 2010

Pizza Evening - Nursery and Toddler Parents

Pizza and Wine Evening
Friday - 5th February
6.00 p.m. - 7.30 p.m.
Pizza, wine and fruit juice provided.

We would like to invite the Nursery and Toddler parents to a social evening where you have the opportunity to meet and mingle with the teachers and other parents.  This is a great opportunity to get to know the teachers and to discuss any questions about the programmes at Bayfield
If you have any questions regarding this evening please contact Shona on 378 8106. 
We look forward to seeing you there.

Monday, 25 January 2010

Clothes Borrowed From Preschool

Recently the children have been having lots of water play and have been changing their clothes several times throughout the day.  If your child has borrowed any of the clothes from Bayfield could you please return them AS SOON AS POSSIBLE as we are very short on spare clothes for the children at the moment.  We would appreciate your help with this.
Ori and the preschool team.

Nursery's New Teacher

We warmly welcome a new teacher to the Nursery staff.  Helen Hart is commencing employment with us on Monday 25th of January 2010. 
Helen comes from the Waikato where she has trained for a degree in Early Childhood Education and completed her full registration as a teacher.
Helen comes to us with several years experience of working with young children and we look forward to welcoming her to the team of teachers in the Tuatara Room.
Due to this placement, Karen Burton will be moving to a relieving position and will be working in different parts of the centre, so don't worry, we will still see Karen around!
Please do make Helen feel welcome to the centre and introduce yourself to her when you meet.
As always, any questions regarding the above, please see me.
Kind regards
Shona Hewitt
Centre Manager

Friday, 22 January 2010

Music Classes in Preschool

20.01.2010  Today was the start of the first ten week block of music classes.  Andy, Curtis, Luke, Thomas M, Joe, Evie, Isabel and Charlotte raced inside at ten o'clock to find out what this music business is all about.
We started by having a brainstorm about what music is and the children came up with some great answers.  They started off with the obvious examples, such as singing and playing instruments, and then started to think more outside the square, listing things like sirens and hand clapping.
Next, I introduced the book series "So-Me" which gradually incorporates more and more musical concepts as the series goes on.  "So-Me Goes Missing" is the first title, and is based around the fact that sounds are all around us. 
I tested the children on their musical instrument knowledge and was surprised about how much they knew!  Many of the children were able to name a range of instruments, such as a clarinet, piano, trumpet, trombone and drum kit and those who couldn't,very quickly caught on.  We then shared our experiences of trying out instruments, with most of the children saying they had had a go on at least one sort before.
We spent the second half of the class playing rhythm games.  I would tap out a pattern by patting my knees, the floor, or clapping, and the children would copy me.  Then we all patted our knees together until we had a good rhythm going and practiced chanting our names in time to the beat.
Today's class was heaps of fun and the children all participated enthusiastically.  They were excited to be part of something new and listened carefully to my instructions.  I have encouraged the children to bring along any musical instruments they have at home (recorders, shakers, etc) to share with the group next Wednesday, and I have promised to bring along a ukelele!  I will try and bring a different instrument each week so that the children have a chance to see the various ones up close and touch the keys, strings etc.
If you would like to help your children further develop what we learnt today, you can do so by looking at pictures of instruments and naming them, playing clapping/stomping games and talking about the sounds of everyday life.

Thursday, 21 January 2010

Preschool Water Play

Welcome back everybody!!  We trust you had a wonderful break and are ready to get stuck into 2010.
With the weather being so wonderful and hot we will be having lots of water play and fun outside.
We have been talking with the children about how to keep safe in the sun and would really appreciate a "NAMED" hat for your child, if we do not have one already. 
As you know the children absolutely love to change clothes so an extra set of clothes and/or togs and towel (ALSO NAMED) would be wonderful.  Watch this space for photos of our water play adventures!

Wednesday, 20 January 2010

Lost Property

One of the preschool children have lost a pair of shoes at the end of 2009.  Please find attached a photo of the missing shoes.  If your child has taken these shoes home in error can you please return them to the centre as soon as possible.

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