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Autumn Term Focus Ideas

As mentioned earlier, in Nursery we have very short focused sessions and the majority of our day is spent playing and exploring. Below are some ideas to try from home. 

As well as these short focuses, try to include a daily story or two, sing some nursery rhymes, explore outside (if you can), talk with each other and try to limit screen time. 


14.12.2020 – 18.12.2020




Today is Christmas Party Day!

We are going to spend most of our day dancing and playing games together in Nursery!

If you are celebrating party day at home, don’t worry!

Play your favourite songs and have yourself a boogie at home!

We will be playing games like musical statues and musical bumps too – ask your grown-up to play with you (or maybe just be the DJ!)



Find the total!

We have really enjoyed making paper chains in nursery – but this time, we are going to test our maths skills while we make them!


All you will need is 2 different colours of paper and a dice to make your chains. If you don’t have a dice, you could just write the numbers 1-5 on pieces of paper and put them in a bag.


Simply roll the dice and count the spots (or choose a number from the bag)

This is the number of links you will make with the first colour!

Then repeat for the second colour.

When you have finished your paperchain – count how many links you have in total!


You could introduce mathematical language to the activity, for example:

“How many do you have all together?”

“You have nine in total, because four and/plus/add five equal nine



Today, in Nursery, the children have been challenged by the Kindness Elves to make the Christmas jumpers the grown-ups will wear for Christmas jumper day!


The grown-ups are super excited to see what the children come up with!

If you are at home, don’t worry – you can still help to!

Design your own Christmas jumper by drawing, painting or even collaging your design.

You can upload you design to the Class Blog for the grown-ups to see!



The Kindness Elves are sad to be leaving soon, but have set us a yummy sounding challenge today!

They would like us to make our very own ‘Melting Snowman Biscuits’!


To make these, we need a digestive biscuit (or rich tea, hob nob – whatever takes your fancy!), some icing sugar and a marshmallow!


Spoon the icing sugar over your biscuit (it doesn’t have to be neat – this is the ‘melted’ part of your snowman!) and plop you marshmallow on top!


Wait a little bit for your icing sugar to set, and enjoy! Yummy!



Today is the last day in Nursery before Christmas!

We have a lovely ‘Polar Express Day’ planned.

Children (and grown-ups) are super excited to come to Nursery in their PJs and watch Polar Express together J

We might even have a hot chocolate too!


If you at home, we hope you can join in too – simply by watching the film at home (in your PJs, of course!). Maybe you could help your grown-ups to make you hot chocolate too!


The Staff in Nursery wish you all a very Merry Christmas!

Stay safe, and we will see you all in the New Year!




07.12.2020 – 11.12.2020




The Kindness Elves are still setting us challenges to help us spread a little Christmas joy!

This week, their challenge is for us to make all of the lovely craft items we are selling in our Christmas Catalogue!


We need to listen very carefully to follow the instructions they send to the grown-ups every day!

Obviously, we can’t share their recipes – they told us they are Top Secret!


Can you follow instructions from your grown-ups at home?

Maybe you can listen carefully to instructions to make your own lunch!



We are looking forward to sharing our Christmas nursery rhymes with our grown-ups soon! We have been busy learning the words and singing along, ready for the grown-ups in Nursery to video for grown-ups at home!


Here are the words to one of them, for you to practice at home too!


At The North Pole (to the tune of Down in the Jungle)


‘At the North Pole where nobody goes

There’s a roly poly polar bear washing his clothes

With a rub-a-dub here and a rub-a-dub there

That’s the way he washes his clothes!


He goes brr, brr, a boogie-woogie-oogie

Brr, Brr, a boogie-woogie-oogie

Brr, Brr, a boogie-woogie-oogie

That’s the way he washes his clothes!


At the North Pole where nobody goes

There’s Rudolph the Reindeer washing his clothes

With a rub-a-dub here and a rub-a-dub there

That’s the way he washes his clothes!


He goes stamp, stamp, a boogie-woogie-oogie

Stamp, stamp, a boogie-woogie-oogie

Stamp, stamp, a boogie-woogie-oogie

That’s the way he washes his clothes!


At the North Pole where nobody goes

There’s Piccolo the Penguin washing his clothes

With a rub-a-dub here and a rub-a-dub there

That’s the way he washes his clothes!


He goes waddle, waddle, a boogie-woogie-oogie

Waddle, waddle, a boogie-woogie-oogie

Waddle, waddle, a boogie-woogie-oogie

That’s the way he washes his clothes!


At the North Pole where nobody goes

There’s Jolly Father Christas washing his clothes

With a rub-a-dub here and a rub-a-dub there

That’s the way he washes his clothes!


He goes Ho! Ho! A boogie-woogie-oogie

Ho! Ho! A boogie-woogie-oogie

Ho! Ho! A boogie-woogie-oogie

That’s the way he washes his clothes!’



We really enjoy playing our musical instruments in nursery!


Can you use musical instruments at home (or make them, I you don’t have any!) and play them along with some more of our Christmas Nursery rhymes?


Have a go a playing along to ‘Twinkle, twinkle Christmas star’ (it’s the same as twinkle, twinkle little star – but sing ‘Christmas’ instead of ‘little’!)



Today, the Kindness elves have set us a task to make Christmas cards!

There are lots of ways we can do this – we can paint, draw, collage, or even make one on the computer if you have access to a printer!

Once your card is made, don’t forget to write your name inside, otherwise no one will know who it is from!



A lot of the tasks the Kindness Elves have set us have included measuring – they sent us the recipes to make reindeer food, playdough and hot chocolate cones!


Can you practice your measuring skills and help to do some baking at home?

Shortbread, biscuits, scones or cakes all involve measuring to make them successfully.

And, what’d even better… you have a yummy treat at the end!

Don’t forget to show us your creations on the Class Blog!


30.11.2020 – 04.12.2020




With December arriving tomorrow, Nursery have decided to put up their Christmas tree!

We are going to make our very own decorations to put around the classroom too!


We are continuing to explore sounds too.

Using a selection of musical instruments, discuss how each one is played. Do you have to hit, bang, tap, shake, scrape, or do something else to the instruments to make a sound?


Once you have worked out how to play them, let’s have a bit of fun!

Sing the song (to the tune of Jump in the Line – follow the link to hear the song! )

“Shake, shake, shake your instrument, shake it if you like,

Shake, shake, shake your instrument, every day and night!”


Your child should select the instrument which is played by shaking, and play along with the song.


Repeat for hit, bang, tap, scrape etc (changing the words in your song!) until you have correctly identified each type of instrument and played along!



It’s December!

Lots of children are excited to have opened the first door on their Advent Calendar, and some have even told us about the Cheeky Elves who have visited their house!


We have some special visitors in Nursery, too.

The Kindness Elves!

The Kindness Elves are going to set us some tasks of kindness, and will be keeping a watchful eye on all of us to check we are completing them!

Here is their story:


Think about all of the ways you can show kindness and be helpful!

Tell your grown up all of your ideas – I’m sure they will love to hear them all!




Kindness Elves Challenge:

Say nice things to friends and adults (give compliments)



Sequencing times


Have a think about what you do in the day – can you tell your grown-up in the right order?


Let’s start with your morning.

What do you do when you get out of bed?

You might:

- eat your breakfast

- brush your teeth

- comb your hair

- get dressed

But what order do you do them in?


Can you use language like “before I brush my teeth, I…”, “After I comb my hair, I…”

This time based language is part of our Early Years Development J

Here are some ideas, if you need them - or, of course, you can use your own!




Kindness Elves Challenge:

to make Christmas cards for our grown-ups and write your name inside



Do you remember our game from last week?

It was a little bit like ‘pass the parcel’ but we passed a sound!


Do you think you could play again, but this time make it a little trickier (if you are ready to!)

Instead of just passing one or 2 claps, can you pass a sequence or pattern of claps?

What about passing 2 loud and 1 quiet clap?

Can you make up your own pattern of claps for your grown-up to copy?!

How did they do?!




Kindness Elves Challenge:

Decorate your house using paper chains



Making Decorations!

We are excited to begin celebrating Christmas in Nursery!

We are thinking of all of the ways we can make our own decorations.


Paper chains are fun to make, and also help us develop our fine motor skills!

Can you make some? We would love to see them on the Class Blog!


23.11.2020 - 27.11.2020




Last week, we were looking at light and dark – this sparked an interest with some children in nursery. So, this week we are following that, and investigating SPACE!

This made us think of a lovely story: Whatever Next!



Can you use your imagination, like Baby Bear, and make your own Rocket to the moon!



Copying sounds and Rhythm


Have a listen to the music on the BBC Radio link

Can you copy and follow the rhythms you can here, and answer the questions?



We’re going on a shape hunt!


For the past few week, we have been investigating shapes and their properties.

Let’s see if we can find some of these shapes in the world around us!

We are going on a shape hunt in Nursery and our outdoor area to see if we can see any of the shapes we have been investigating.

Can you do the same at home/in your garden?


You could take photos of the shapes you find and upload them to the Nursery Blog – we would love to see what you discover!



Matching Sounds


Let’s play a game! It’s a little bit like pass the parcel!


We are going to use our listening ears, and copy the sound we can here, and pass it around.

We can start by passing a single clap.


Once we can pass the single clap, we can make it trickier by adding more claps! Can you copy the rhythm of the claps?


If you have some instruments at home, you can use these to make your sequence of sounds even trickier!

Don’t worry if you don’t have any instruments though! You could tap a rhythm on the table, knock on the door or use the instruments you made last week to make your sound sequences!




There are so many art, craft and sensory ideas you can explore, which link with space!


You could have a go at making your own ‘moon sand’!

It’s 2 simple ingredients, and should provide hours of sensory fun! Simply mix together 2 cups of flour and ¼ cup of baby oil until it has a sand-like consistency. You could add a drop of food colour or some crushed chalks to make it a little more colourful, if you want!


You could junk model your own rocket, either a small one you can hold, or a large one you could sit in, like Baby Bear from our story earlier this week (if you have something big enough!)


Or just paint your own space themed picture using paints, chalks or pen!


16.11.2020 - 20.11.2020




 Light and Dark


What do you know about light and dark?

When it is light outside; what do you do?

Is it easy to do these things when it is light? Why do you think this is?


What about when it’s dark?

How are things different?


This week, we are exploring light and dark.

When it is dark, can you make it light? What could you use?

What about when it is light; can you make it dark? How could you do this?



I am the music man!


Sing the ‘Music Man’ song, but instead of saying the name of the instrument, play it while it is hidden behind a screen or blanket.


Can you name the instrument, or match it to another (if you happen to have 2 of each instrument!) 




Find a selection of shapes we can sort!

 Can you sort the shapes?

Why have you chosen to sort them like this?

It might be because they are all the same colour, the shapes might all have the same name, or they might all be a similar size.


This time, talk about the properties of the shape. Have a look at the number of sides or how many corners they have.

Can you use these features to sort the shapes now?


Squares and rectangles!

You might have sorted these all into the same group – that’s great!

But what do you notice about them? Can you separate them even more?!




 Let’s make a band!

We have explored musical instruments, and the types of sounds they make, so now let’s make our own!


Have a look for recycled materials: plastic bottles, cardboard boxes, yogurt pots etc. that you can use to make your very own musical instrument!

You could fill them with rice, pasta or spaghetti.

How would you play this instrument?

By shaking, taping, or banging it?


What other instruments could you make?

A drum?

A guitar?


Sing some Nursery Rhymes, and play your instruments!



Light and dark pictures!

We have had lots of fun, exploring light and dark, and how they are different.

We thought we would create some images to represent the differences between them!


You could create a collage of a sun and/or moon, using a paper plate (or draw your own!). Use collage materials of the correct colour to make your sun or moon, or even create it on the correct coloured background. What colour would you use to show darkness or light?


If you’re feeling particularly arty, you could have a go at recreating Van Gough’s picture ‘Starry Night’. We love how the colours swirl together to make the light and dark parts of the sky!


You could have a go at shadow drawing too!

If you can, see if you can put an object outside so you can see the shadow, draw around the shadow at different times of the day to see how it changes!


09.11.2020 - 13.11.2020




This week, we will be learning about Remembrance day.

Here is a lovely story from CBeebies Radio, about why we wear a poppy.




Exploring instruments!

If you have some instruments around the house, you can use these – if not, you can make your own with things from around your house (pots, pans, wooden spoons etc)

If you would rather not use your pots and pans, you can listen to some instruments here!


Discuss the instruments:

What are they called?

How do you play them?

Do you shake them, tap them, bang them?


Explore the instruments and their sounds.

Can you sort them by how they are payed?


Can you make a loud and a quiet sound with each of them?



2D shapes

Here are some shapes – can you name them?


These are all 2D shapes. They are all flat.

Can you see the sides of the shape?

Do you notice the corners?

Count them for each shape!


You could play ‘Kim’s Game’ with the shapes:

Put each of the shapes in front of you, and name them.

Now, cover the shapes, remove one and reveal the remaining shapes.

Can you name the missing shape?




Let’s make a band!

We have looked at musical instruments (or made our own)

Today, a grown-up is going to be the conductor of the band!

It is a conductor’s job to tell the people in the band how and when to play the music.


Show the actions for ‘play’ and ‘stop’ you would like to use – making sure that when the music has stopped, the instrument is on the floor and still.


Repeat for loud and quiet.


Now try all together.

Can you follow the instructions from the conductor, and make your own band?!





Today is Children in Need day!

There are lots of ideas on the official Children in Need website:




02.11.2020 - 06.11.2020




Welcome back! We hope you had a relaxing Half term holiday, and are excited to be back to Nursery!

We normally spend our first day back in Nursery after a holiday telling everyone what we got up to!

Can you tell your grown-ups what your favourite thing was during the holidays?!

Perhaps you could draw a picture to go with your story!

We would love to see it!



Might have heard some noises when it gets dark. Do you know what they are?


This week is Bonfire night (we will look at this in more detail later in the week!) 

Have a listen to the video, what sounds to the fireworks make?

Can you hear them:

   Fizz      Pop      Bang      Boom      Crackle   


Can you make a noise like a firework?!


You could make your own firework representations, using chalks, paints or even playdough!




Let’s recap the Numicon we have learned so far!

We have looked at Numicon 1-5

What can you remember about them?





Remember, remember the 5th November…


Today is Bonfire Night!

We remember November 5th every year, because of a man called Guy Fawkes. 


The story of Guy Fawkes can be found here:

(There aren't many videos about this online, suitable for Early Years - so this one is a little out of date. You might need to explain that Boris Johnson is our current Prime Minister!)



This weekend, on Sunday, it is Remembrance Sunday.

On this day, people everywhere will be silent for 2 minutes to remember brave soldiers from all of the armed forces.


You might see people wearing a red poppy, as a way of showing their respect.

We will look further into this next week.


CBeebies have a beautiful animation you might like to share with your child.


19.10.2020 - 23.10.2020




This week in Nursery, we are focusing on Halloween!

We are looking at this picture, discussing what we can see and how it makes us feel.




Have you seen any spooky Halloween things around yet?

One of the children in Nursery has seen Halloween episodes of his favourite TV show, and is very excited to tell everyone about it!



Socks and Shakers!

We have another listening game for you to try!

Collect 6 socks (or similar) and fill them with different materials (pasta, coins, rice, paper, glass beads, pebbles, bells etc)

Ask children to shake them and try and guess what they think may be inside?

Reveal – did they guess correctly?

Discuss the materials inside – where might we find them?



We have looked at Numicon to represent the numbers 1-4, this week we are focusing on 5!

The Numicon for 5 is red.


Can you sing a song that counts from 5? We enjoy singing five cheeky monkeys jumping on the bed, or five little ducks went swimming one day!



Now we have looked at numbers 1-5


Can you follow the instructions to make the Halloween potion?!



Socks and shakers: matching pairs!

 Repeat from last session but have two socks (or similar) with each material.

Ask children to shake the socks - can they match the sound to its pair?



It’s crazy hair day in school today! In Nursery, we are even dressing up in our own spooky clothes or costumes (if we want to!)

Can you think of a crazy hairstyle you could give yourself?! You could draw, paint or even make a model of a crazy hairstyle too!


Why not have a go at making your own Halloween decorations – paper plate pumpkins, spooky paper chains, or even a papier mache ghost!










This week, we are reading the story Leaf Man.

Can you see what the Leaf Man changed in to, as he is blown away by the wind?

Does Leaf Man get to choose what he changes in to?

Could you be blown away by the wind, like Leaf Man? Why?



Listening and remembering sounds.

We are beginning to recognise sounds around us, but it can sometimes be tricky to work out what makes a certain noise. To help us distinguish sounds, we have a game to play!

“Mrs Colman has a bag…” – this can be done with a bag or a box (and you can change the name if you wish!)

Fill the bag with 6 noisy items (we like to use some keys, a bag of crisps/pasta, squeaky duck or toy, bottle of water or liquid…and any others I can find!) Hide them in the bag and sing the song to the tune of Old MacDonlad had a farm:

“Mrs Colman has a bag, EIEIO,

And in that bag she has a….”
Stop and make the sound in the bag hidden for children to guess.

Reveal – did they get it right?



This week, we are continuing to explore Numicon.

We have looked at Numicon to represent 1, 2 and 3, and this week we are exploring 4.

The Numicon for 4 is mint coloured.

Can you count out 4 items, giving each a number?

Can you represent numbers 1-4, in order?



Describe it, find it!

Have 4 very different objects from around the house to start (spoon, toy animal, toy car and a sock). Lay them out in front of child, naming each in turn, and ask them to listen carefully while you describe an object and they have to guess which one it is. E.g. I am thinking of an object that has 4 wheels, it has 5 doors, it is yellow and the horn goes ‘BEEP!’ – which one is it?
This could be made more difficult by using all objects from the same category (all animals all transport etc).



We are looking at the story Leaf Man this week. There are lots and lots of autumn leaves falling to the ground now, so we thought we could make our very own leaf people and/or animals!






During our autumn walk in the school grounds, we noticed there was an apple tree next to the playground!

We have been looking at different types of apples; some have green skin, some have red, and some even have yellow skin!

Cut some apples (supervised, of course!) and discover the seeds inside - what are they for? What would happen if you put them in the ground?

BBC School Radio has a lovely Apple related Playtime, the link is here:



Peace At Last!

As part of our phonics focus, we are reading the Story Peace At Last. Read the story (or follow the link below, if you don't own a copy!) - can you make the noises Mr Bear hears throughout the night?

The ticking clock;

The dripping tap;

Mrs Bear's snoring.



Introducing Numicon

In Nursery, we use Numicon to help with our numbers.

Numicon is an approach to teaching maths that helps us to see connections between numbers. It is a multi-sensory way of learning, which means we learn by seeing and feeling.

The holes in the Numicon Shapes represent the numbers 1 to 10.

Here are the Numicon for the number 1-3.

One is orange

Two is lilac

Three is yellow.

Can you count out objects to show these numbers?

Can you point to the numeral to match the quantity?



Sound stories – can you make your own sound story from around your house?

 Tell the story of your daily routine such as waking up, brushing your teeth, eating your breakfast etc and the sounds that all these different activities make.



Printing. We have been exploring printing on our painting table.

We have looked at apples, what happens when you print with an apple? Can you see the different parts of the apple in your print?


You might want to paint your own apple tree, adding the apples with your fingers!





This week, we are continuing to focus on the story Owl Babies. We are looking at each of the owls and asking questions about them.

Where do the owls live?

How did the owls feel when they realised their Mummy had gone?

Which owl do you think is the youngest? Why do you think this?

How do you think the owls feel when Mummy comes back? 



We are using our listening ears to identify environmental sounds.

Here is a link to a Sound Bingo game we enjoy:

Can you identify the sounds and match them to the pictures?

There are lots of these games on Youtube, and they can be found here.



Exploring numbers

We enjoy singing number sings in Nursery, but we are now starting to count out a number of objects too. 

Can you count up to ten?


Now, do you think you can count out ten objects?

It could be ten beads, pens, socks, Cheerios... ten of anything! 

Don't forget to put them back where they live when you have finished!



Autumn walks!

In Nursery, we love to look for the signs of autumn, and often bring in lots of leaves, conkers and twigs we have found on our walk to school. 

Why no go on an autumn walk with your grown-ups and collect any signs of autumn you find on your way.

You can look for leaves of different colours - red, orange, yellow and brown. Remember to only collect things that have fallen from trees and are on the ground, never pull anything from the trees!



We are exploring printing in our Messy area this week.

You can use sponges, blocks, or even some of the items you find on your autumn walk to print with!

We are going to use washing up scourers to make our own autumn prints - what can you make?!


21.09.2020 - 25.09.2020





The grown-ups in Nursery love Autumn! There are so many beautiful colours, crunchy leaves, conkers and even some creatures we wouldn’t normally see!


This reminded us of a lovely story you could read at home: Owl Babies.


This is not only a great book for introducing some of these autumn animals to us, but it also reminds us that Mummy Owl will always come back – this is particularly good for when we start Nursery, as sometimes we forget that our grown-ups will come back at the end of the session!






Songs which count up!


We love singing nursery rhymes in Nursery, and a lot of the songs we enjoy involve counting!

There are lots of counting songs available on BBC Teach, but one that we particularly like is ‘One, two, three, four, five, once I caught a fish alive!’

You can count on your fingers as you sing, and you could even make your own cheeky fish to bite your finger too!


You could get really creative and add a small fridge magnet to your fish, and make a fishing rod with a piece of string and a paperclip – that way you could really catch your own fish too!

Can you ‘catch’ ten fish, and count them as you do?

Can you recognise the number on each of the fish?





What part of our body do we use for listening? That’s right – our listening ears!


We are always listening out for sounds, but do you notice what’s making those noises?


Let’s have a listening moment!

Take a few minutes to listen out for sounds you can hear inside your house, can you tell a grown up what is making those sounds?


What was the loudest sound?

What was the quietest sound?

Can you try to make that sound with your voice of body?


You could even have a go at drawing the thing that makes the sound!




Let’s develop those Gross Motor skills!


We use gross motor skills to do everyday things that involve our bigger muscles. Most people use these skills easily and automatically – but gross motor skills are more complex than you might think.

These skills involve the coordination of the muscles and the neurological system. They impact balance and coordination. They also form the basis for  fine motor skills that help us make small, fiddly movements.


It’s easier than you might think to develop these skills.

Simple things like climbing up and walking down the stairs, and jumping with 2 feet are great ways to check that balance and coordination are working - and what 3-4 year old doesn’t enjoy jumping off things (safely, of course!)


Nursery rhymes or songs with actions, like ‘I’m a little teapot’, or ‘The hokey kokey’ are also good for developing those gross motor skills.




Paint! Paint is fun to play with. You can use it in a conventional way, and create an amazing piece of art, or you can get creative!

Try adding 2 colours of paint into a zip lock freezer bag. Squidge it together and see what happens! This is not only a fun sensory activity, but also allows you to explore what happens when colours mix. Explore mixing the primary colours and see what happens. See if you make a picture with the new colour you have made!

Ditch the paintbrushes! Experiment painting with different things. Printing with sponges to create different textures, or even with fruit and vegetables can be a fun way of creating different art! Cutting a potato in half and creating different shapes can be fun too!

Or you could get really messy by painting with your fingers, hands or even feet!


Can you make a picture using autumn colours and one of these paint-y ideas?