PORTLAND HOUSE PARENT NEWSLETTER SUMMER TERM 2024

Welcome to our Summer term Newsletter.

We are all thoroughly enjoying a fabulous start to the summer having lots of exciting outdoor adventures, we are anticipating some much welcome sunshine over the coming months.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone for their patience and understanding whilst the renovations to the basement have been carried out. This has taken longer than initially anticipated due to delays with deliveries and tradespeople. As you are aware we had a flood over the festive closure period which has resulted in extensive renovation work needed to be carried out. This has enabled us to completely change the learning environment in the fun club and preschool focus rooms. The mayor came on Friday the 17th May to officially open the rooms and we are very much looking forward to the children exploring the facilities and parents will be able to come and view them too over the next few weeks.

We would like to say a big Thank you to the parents that have given their time over the last term to come in and share their skills, job roles with the children at focused learning group times, this experience has been invaluable to their learning, if any other parents would like to arrange to come in to share their interests, hobbies, talk about their job role or just to do an activity or read a story to the children, please speak to a staff member we would love to arrange a date with you.

Sadly it is fast approaching that time of year where we say goodbye to our preschool children who are flying the nest and starting their new adventure at school in September; we hope that you all keep in touch and feel welcome to come and visit.

Don't forget our regular Stay and Play's which give you an opportunity to join in with your child's activities, talk to staff and meet other parents.

I look forward to meeting all the new families that have joined us and seeing the children engage in the experiences this Summer time presents.

Learning focus at the moment

Over the coming Sumer term we will be focusing on a variety of activities that focus on investigating changes in nature and life cycles. The children were thrilled to have the opportunity to observe the life cycle of the butterfly and watch the process of change for this and took great delight in releasing them into the nursery garden.

If you have any questions about the activities we are doing or would like any additional information please do not hesitate to contact your key person via the parents zone app who will be more than happy to assist with information regarding the activities your child has been doing.

Preschool

This term the preschool children are looking at 'Our world under the sea". We will be looking at the different creatures that live under the sea such as mammals, amphibians, which creatures are herbivores and carnivores. We will also be reading the book ‘Turtle who turns the tide’, where we will focus on sea pollution and how to keep our oceans clean. We will also be talking about school transitions and enhancing our role play areas to support the transitions.

Toddlers

In the toddler room we have been learning all about bug and insects that live in our garden, we have been having regular visits to the wormery to see the worms in their own habit, going on bug hunts under the wooden logs and looking for different types of birds up high in the trees. The children have been engaging in focused play using little group games such as farm lotto and shopping lists learning about game rules, taking turns and developing their understanding and team skills. Over the spring and summer term we are going to be focusing on learning about our outdoor environment. The children will be taking part in growing and planting activities starting with vegetable seeds, talking about how we need to care for them, watching them grow and harvesting them for Yannick to cook for us. This links into our May topic of healthy bodies, healthy me where we will be learning about how to keep ourselves fit and healthy, joining in with yoga, fruit tasting and spending lots of time outside using our gross motor skills. We will be having some focused time based around our own and others wellbeing and how we can care for our friends. We have welcomed a new friend into the toddler room called 'Bertie Bear', Bertie is looking forward to going on lots of little adventures over the summer with the children in the toddler room. If you would like to take him home for the weekend please speak to a member of the toddler room staff team.

Babies 1

This month we are we have been focusing on animals specifically pet, the children have enjoyed looking at our books on pets: 'Where's Mr. Dog' and 'Who am I'. Lewis one of our modern day apprentices brought some of his pets from home and some of the children had the chance to have a visit from a baby gecko and a tarantula earlier this month and they really enjoyed this experience. We have also had lots of fun in the garden looking at the wormery, holding the worm and hunting for other creepy crawlies, as we go into next month we look forward to more time in the garden and with our gardening club soon to be up and running there will be lots more plants to attract more bugs to learn about.

Babies 2

This month we will be concentrating on lots of outdoor activities, including water play and preparing the garden for the Summer. Activities: planting, watering, dressing and undressing and many many more. We have been joining in with many activities that have sparked the children's interest. St. Georges Day they created their own flags using different shaped tissue paper and were intrigued by the glue dripping off the glue spreader. Water Play has also been a big interest, encouraging lots of fun splashing, watering of the flowers and washing the baby dolls. It's been a month filled with fun and laughter.



Outdoors

We are introducing a ‘nurturing nature group’ which will meet on Mondays at 4.15pm lead by Alannah. The sessions will commence bi weekly starting from Monday 10th June.

If there are any parents or family members that are green fingered and would be interested in helping us with the gardening club for the children or coming along to learn new skills please can you contact the office or speak to your child’s key worker.

Staff News

We welcome our new apprentice Lewis who has started his journey in the toddler and baby rooms, he is looking forward to meeting you all over the coming weeks and has some exciting activities planned to share with the children such as jiu-itsu martial arts and learning about exotic pets such as tarantulas.

Congratulations to Rebecca who after stating her journey with us as an apprentice is taking on a permanent position joining the preschool team as an nursery Assistant. For those of you that haven’t met her yet she is very much looking forward to meeting you all the preschool families

Diary Dates

Stay and Play events

June Stay and Play ‘World Environment Day’

Tuesday 18th – Preschool (9.30-10.30am)

Tuesday 18th – Toddlers (9.30-10.30am)

Wednesday 17th – Babies (10.00-11.00am)

July Stay and Play ‘Wimbledon’

Friday 5th – Preschool (2.00-3.00pm)

Tuesday 6th – Toddlers (10.00-11.00am)

Thursday 25th – Babies (4.15-5.15pm)

Tickets will be on sale for the events to include refreshments. Details to follow nearer the date of the event.

August Stay and Play ‘Sea Serpent Day and National Play Day’

Tuesday 6th – Preschool (10.00-11.00am)

Wednesday 7th – Toddlers (Time)

Tuesday 20th – Babies (10.00-11.00am)

Leavers Picnic

Tuesday 16th July, 2pm onwards

Nursery closures

Monday 6th May – Early May (Bank Holiday)

Monday 27th May – Spring (Bank Holiday)

Monday 26th August – Summer (Bank Holiday)

Term dates

Monday 8th April – Summer term starts

Monday 27th May – Term time only children break up for half term week.

Monday 3rd June – Term time children return

Monday 22nd July – Term time children break up for Summer holidays.

** Tuesday 29th October – Staff training Day

At Portland nurseries we believe that for us to provide your children with the best possible experiences whilst in our care it is mandatory to keep staff training up to date and refreshed regularly. With this, we hold two training days a year where we close the nursery to allow us the time to ensure knowledge and skills are up to date with current practice guidelines.

We appreciate your co-operation and understanding when it comes to closing the nursery for our staff training days.


Charity Events

Charity Events

Monday 20th May – World Bee day

We will be selling homemade bee bombs that the children will be creating during this week. all proceeds will go towards our nominated Charity Candlelighters

Monday 5th June – World Environment Day

We will be hosting a variety of activities such as recycling, litter picking and a toy exchange for the children across all rooms to participate in.

Monday 1st July – Friday 12th June – Wimbledon fortnight

We will be organising a ticket event for our very own tennis tournament- details to follow.

Monday 15th – National Give Something Away Day

More details to follow closer to the time of the event.

26th July – Friday 11th August – Summer Olympics

(Dates to be confirmed for each room)

Thursday 29th July – Global Tiger Day

Parents will be invited to a tea party picnic that will be themed upon one of our favourite children’s stories ‘The Tiger that came to Tea’ tickets for the event will be £3.00 to include refreshments.

Full details to follow.

Thursday 15th August – Granny Square Day (‘A blanket is a gift of comfort and love)

Parents, family members and children will be invited to help create a patchwork blanket that we will be donating to charity. We are asking for knitted or crochet 4 inch squares to be made and brought to nursery for this date to they can be sewn together by our very own Charlotte to create our charity comfort blanket.

Further information

Mobile Phones

Please can I remind parents that the use of mobile phones on nursery premises is strictly prohibited, you must not take any photographs or videos at nursery or at any nursery events. Using your mobile phone breaks the statutory welfare requirements and is also a breach of safeguarding policies to which we must adhere.

Lost and Found property

We kindly request your cooperation in labelling your child's belongings, including shoes, clothes, hats and other personal items. Clear labelling with your child's name will help ensure that everything is returned to its rightful owner. This simple step will save time and minimise any potential mix-ups. Please check the Lost and Found property boxes periodically to retrieve any misplaced items.

Summer Clothing

As the weather gets warmer please ensure your child has suitable clothing to participate comfortably in all aspects of outdoor play that are all clearly labelled with their name and that can be kept at nursery.

We would kindly request that you bring suitable footwear for participating in outdoor play that will protect your child’s feet when it’s too hot for wellingtons. (No crocs, open toe sandals or flip flops)

Sun cream

Please could parents help prepare your child for outdoor play by applying sun cream before they come to nursery. We will of course be applying the sun cream routinely throughout the course of the day on the sunny days. If your child has allergens to the nursery suncream please can you provide your own for your child to be kept at nursery.

Nursery Fee Payment Reminder

Quite a few payments are coming in after 1st of the month. Just a reminder that all payments must reach our bank account before the 1st of each month this includes all childcare vouchers, Tax Free Childcare Payments and Bank Transfers. Any parents paying by SLC with need to pay their monthly top up amount by 1st also. Please note that payments usually take 3-4 business days to reach our account.

Any payments received after 1st of the month will incur a £20 late payment charge and continued failure to pay will be charged at a daily rate of 8% of the outstanding debt.

Copyright © 2018 Portland Nurseries, All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:
Oakwood House, 2 Hungerford Road, Huddersfield HD3 3AL
Portland Nurseries Limited. Company No. 7538309. Registered in England & Wales.

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