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December 2019





Glenbrook Nursery School

December Newsletter 2019


This month as we look forward to Christmas, our themes are SHINY and CHRISTMAS.


The children will have opportunities to:

  • Make shiny pictures.
  • Use shiny things in sand and water play.
  • Talk about our reflections in Christmas baubles, spoons (on which side are we upside down?).
  • Look for shiny things in their environment, puddles, sun shining on smooth surfaces etc.
  • Make Christmas decorations and small gifts for home in our creative activities. This will encourage the children to think of others, as well as the gifts they hope to receive themselves.
  • Play in our ‘Christmas home corner’. Talk about Christmas dinner in school and at home.
  • Help decorate the large tree in the hall and small trees in the sand tray.
  • Set up a Nativity Scene in the classroom and hear the story of the birth of Jesus.
  • Act out the Nativity Story using dressing up clothes.
  • Sing Christmas Carols and songs e.g. Away in a Manger, When Santa got stuck up the chimney. (See song sheet.)
  • Play imaginatively with Santa’s parcels, reindeer etc. in the sand.
  • Talk about the changes in the seasons – short days, colder weather and how these affect us i.e. the clothes we need to wear.
  • Wrap boxes in Christmas paper – estimate sizes needed, use scissors and Sellotape etc.


(For the rest of the learning opportunities please see the attached learning plan sheets.)




School Visits

This year Victoria Primary School are coming to Nursery to sing to us Wednesday 11th December. We are very excited about this visit and we look forward to their singing.




Parental Reminder


All Parents need to complete an application form for Primary 1.  Please check the Education Authority’s website ( for further information about the online application process which opens in January 2020.  Please ensure that you know when the deadline for completion is.

If you have a child of preschool age and he/she hopes to start nursery in September 2020 then again check the EA website for further information. 






Nursery School Christmas Fayre

As you know we are having a Christmas Fair to raise money for the nursery on Thursday 12th December from 1.10pm to 2.00 pm in school. 


We hope to have a Christmas raffle.  Tickets will be sent home next week and you will be asked to sell them (at a cost of £1.00 per ticket).  (If you prefer not to receive raffle tickets please let Mrs Garrett know.)  Please write the purchaser’s name and telephone number on the back of each ticket for the draw.  We would also ask if you know anyone who might like to make a donation to our raffle e.g. a gift voucher from a business. then we ask that you approach them on our behalf.  The tickets should be returned to school before Wednesday 11th December because the draw will take place during the Christmas Fair.  We will also ask all children in the nursery to bring in a few items of groceries so that we can make up Christmas hampers.


We will put a sheet of paper in the hallway, for all Parents to sign beside the item of food that they wish to supply, thus ensuring we do not have 52 tins of beans!  We ask that all hamper food be sent into nursery before Monday 9th December 2019.  (We will need a number of Parents to help out in making up the hampers on Monday 9th December from 9.00 am to 10.00 am. if you are free please let a member of staff know.)


We will also be having a number of stalls at the Christmas Fair including tea/coffee and shortbread, children’s crafts, stencil face-painting and children’s photos for Parents to purchase and an opportunity for your child to visit Santa. 


We need a lot of support in running the Christmas Fair thus we ask if you could help out on the day at one of the stalls to let a member if staff know.

          Thank you in anticipation,   Jill McCandless





Child Safeguarding

This term we have had a lot of illness in nursery and this has spread very quickly around the children. I would remind Parents that we have a number of children in school with severe asthma and other debilitating long-term conditions and thus we ask that if your child is unwell or requires medicine including Calpol or Nurofen then they should not be in school. We would also remind you that if your child has vomiting or diarrhoea then they are required to remain off school for a minimum of 48 hours from they last had symptoms. This should control the spread of such infections. Thank you for your continuing support.






Dates To Remember

Saturday 7th  December

Nursery Open Morning from 10.00 to 11.30 for prospective Parents.


Wednesday 4th December

Mini’s Music Christmas visit



Please send in all hamper donations before Monday 9th h December 2019.

Please send in all ballot tickets on Wednesday 11th December 2019.



Thursday 12th December

Nursery Christmas Fair from 1.10 p.m. to 2.30.m.


Friday 13th December

We are having our usual Christmas Sing-A-Long at 11.00 am today.  All Parents and friends are welcome to attend.  We would ask that all children have an adult there to watch them as Nursery will finish straight after the Sing-A-Long and all children will be free to go home.  We gained permission from all Parents in August to allow the

Sing-a-long to be filmed or photographed, by those in attendance, but we ask that these do not appear on social media.

The Sing-a-long is going to be part of the Save the Children - Christmas jumper day and thus we ask all children to wear their Christmas jumpers and to make a donation to this very deserving cause.  We will also have a collection bucket displayed before, during and after the singing.


Tuesday 10th December

P.1. children from Victoria Primary School will be visiting the nursery.  They will be entertaining us with Christmas songs and Carols.


Thursday 19th December

Mr Hullabaloo will visit with Noleen and they will tell us stories using puppets and songs.


Friday 20th   December

Nursery Christmas party, children may wear their own clothes.  Nursery will finish at 11.30am for the Christmas holidays.


Monday 23rd December 2019 to Friday 3rd January 2020 (inclusively)

Nursery Christmas holidays


Monday 6th January 2020

School Development Day – nursery closed for all children


Tuesday 7th January 2020

Nursery will re-open after the Christmas holidays for the children.



All the visitors in the run up to Christmas, as well as the party and Santa presents, will be paid out of the money you provide for the school fund, so thank you.




We would like to take this opportunity to wish all of the children, their families and friends a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.










Themes: Christmas and Shiny

Colours: Red Silver Gold

Shape: Star

Personal, Social And Emotional Development

Children will have opportunities to:

  • Work together as a team – decorating the nursery Christmas tree.
  • Develop friendships further by sending Christmas cards to their friends.
  • Extend imaginative play through small world and role play – take on the role of a postal worker delivering letters, parcels, re-enacting the Nativity and playing in the Christmas house.
  • Experience the pleasure of giving as they make gifts/decorations to take home e.g. Christmas cards and tree decorations.
  • Learn the importance of saying thank you for gifts.
  • Learn the true meaning of Christmas.
  • Perform as a class by singing songs for friends and family.

Ideas to reinforce your child’s learning at home:

  • Encourage children to say thank you.
  • Encourage children to sneeze and cough into the crook of their arms and thus minimise the spread of germs.


Language Development

Children will have opportunities to:

  • Share information about their Christmas preparations - putting up trees, visits to Santa etc.
  • Extend vocabulary with respect to Christmas theme.
  • Listen to stories relating to the Christmas theme.
  • Looking at books relating to Christmas.
  • Continue to develop listening skills when visitors are in nursery.
  • Discuss hibernation – which animals, why they sleep. Store food up and when they waken.
  • Write letters to Santa.
  • Discuss what Santa looks like and where he lives etc.
  • Discuss what it feels like to receive post.
  • Look at photos on the television in the hall as well as class photo albums and discuss memories of what we have done in nursery.
  • Sing songs and rhymes relating to Christmas:
    • When Santa got stuck up the chimney.
    • Jingle Bells
    • Twinkle Twinkle
    • Away In A Manger
    • We Wish You A Merry Christmas
    • Incy Wincy Spider Climbed Up The Christmas Tree
    • Father Christmas
    • Christmas Pudding

Ideas to reinforce your child’s learning at home:

  • Sing songs and rhymes with your child relating to the theme of Christmas, this can enhance your child’s future reading ability. (These rhymes can be found on the monthly rhyme sheet.)
  • Consolidate nursery rhymes from last month by singing them at home.
  • Read stories to your child which again can help them when they come to reading for themselves. (Don’t forget there are books to borrow in the nursery foyer as well as your local library.)

Early Mathematical Experiences

Children will have opportunities to:

  • Match Christmas pictures.
  • Sort Christmas pictures.
  • Match Christmas cards to envelopes.
  • Wrap Christmas presents looking shapes and sizes of paper.
  • Explore 1 to 1 correspondence with respect to giving out cards and presents i.e. 1 present per person, 1 Christmas card per person, 3 Wise Men and 3 gifts.
  • Presents of varying sizes and weights and using the language of comparison – heavy, light, big, bigger, biggest etc.
  • Develop an awareness of sequencing of events through the Nativity story.
  • Count using the Advent Calendar.
  • Guess what is in the present by its shape.
  • Play a memory game about what items the postman has delivered.

Ideas to reinforce your child’s learning at home:

  • Encourage children to help when wrapping presents.
  • Let children match envelopes to their Christmas cards.

Physical Development

Children will have opportunities to:

  • Develop fine motor/manipulation skills by cutting, sticking, wrapping presents, using Christmas stampers and cutters, threading and manipulating beads.
  • Improve cutting using safety scissors and a range of paper and Christmas magazines.
  • Develop the tripod pincer grasp with the use of pencils and pens and writing to Santa.
  • Develop more confidence when zipping up their own suits.


Ideas to reinforce your child’s learning at home:

  • Encourage your child to practice using the safety scissors that they were given in their starting nursery pack.
  • Encourage your child to dress themselves, put on/take off their sweatshirts and shoes and to zip up their own coats.

The Arts

Children will have opportunities to:

  • Listen and join in with songs, rhymes and drama activities relating to the theme of Christmas.
  • Participate in a Mini’s Music session on the theme of Christmas.
  • Continued experiences of sticking activities with both P.V.A. and Pritt glue.
  • Have continued use of felt tips, crayons and colouring pencils.
  • Have continued use of art activities on the art table and easel.
  • Continue to name their pictures using their own name stickers.
  • Experience the musical instruments during outside play.
  • Produce Christmas cards.
  • Paint on the easel with black, white and red paint and pictures of Santa around the room. Discussion re: Santa.
  • Decorate Christmas trees –using metallic paint and print items, using fluorescent paint and cotton reels, sticky materials.
  • Make sticky picture of ‘What I would like for Christmas.’
  • Make Twinkle Twinkle little stars.
  • Make clay/dough Christmas tree decorations.
  • Make spiral decorations.
  • Wrap Christmas presents.
  • Sticky materials to include glitter, cards, tinsel, Christmas paper etc.
  • Make handprints to decorate a Christmas tree.

Ideas to reinforce your child’s learning at home:

  • Encourage your child to recognise their own name by writing it on to their drawings. Remember not to write their name in capital letters i.e. JAMES but instead write James as this will be the way they will be taught in Primary 1.


The World around Us

Children will have opportunities to:

  • Discuss the workings of a Post Office, the role of a postal worker and the journey of a letter.
  • Look at and discuss the weather outside.
  • Continue to examine the change of the seasons i.e. snow, ice, frost, the changes in temperature.
  • Look after hyacinth bulbs planted in November.
  • Look out for items that are silver or gold in the environment.
  • Explore ice placed into the water tray and its properties.

Ideas to reinforce your child’s learning at home:

  • A visit to the local library to borrow fiction and non-fiction books about Christmas would enhance your child’s learning.
  • Encourage children to build snowmen (if we get some snow) and watch what happens as they melt.
  • Discuss the changing weather with your child.