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December Newsletter 2020





Glenbrook Nursery School

December Newsletter 2020


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.)







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 2021.  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.






Child Safeguarding



Our school campus- inside and outside is a dog-free zone, in line with the Department of Education guidelines and therefore we ask that you inform anyone who may collect or drop off your child to nursery, that they need to leave dogs at home.


Thank you to everyone for continuing to follow all of our Covid-19 procedures including the one-way system outside and the use of face masks.  We really appreciate your support.


Please be aware that Covid-19 is still in the community and therefore if your child shows any signs of illness including the symptoms of Covid – high temperature, persistent cough and/or lack of smell or taste then please keep them at home.  We would advise that you phone your GP and ask for advice detailing their symptoms.  We would also request that you phone school, in order to inform staff.  Please be aware if a member of your child’s class bubble tests positive for Covid-19, then the class will be closed for 2 weeks and all children and staff will have to self-isolate.   

Thank you for your continuing support, we all need to work together to keep each other safe.     







Seesaw App.

As you are already aware, we are currently using the Seesaw App. to send home updates and photos of what your child is doing in nursery.  From the beginning of December, we will also be distributing the monthly newsletter, rhyme sheets and learning plans via this way.  If you would prefer a hard copy of these documents instead, please let a member of staff know.








Dates To Remember



Friday 11th December


We will be participating in the Save the Children – Christmas jumper day.  In order to raise funds for the charity, we ask that all children wear their Christmas jumpers and make a £2.00 donation, either paid via bank to bank transfer or paid in an envelope, and placed into the postbox.  This is such a worthy cause, and we think it is important that we give back to the community.  Thank you in anticipation.


Friday 11th December


Due to Covid-19 restrictions we cannot go ahead with our usual Christmas Sing-a-long with an audience, so we will be recording a version to send home to you via Seesaw.  We ask that you keep this recording for personal viewing only and that you do not distribute it via any other social media platform.  If you would like to discuss this further or withdraw your child from the performance please let us know as soon as possible.


Tuesday 22nd December

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


Wednesday 23rd December 2020 to Tuesday 5th January 2021 (inclusively)

Nursery Christmas holidays 

Please be aware that the Christmas holidays may be made longer by the Department of Education to provide a circuit breaker, but at present we have received no information relating to this.  We will contact you as soon as possible if things change.


Wednesday 6th January 2021

School Development Day – nursery closed for all children


Thursday 7th January 2021

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




3+ Health Initiative

For the last few years, we have been part of the 3+ Health Initiative in which our local Health Visitor (Janine McMenamin) came into school and did each child’s 3+ Health assessment with a Parent present.  This year because of Covid-19 this will not be possible, however as an alternative a questionnaire will be given out in school for you to complete and then these will be returned to the Health Visitor, who may or may not contact you about them.  This initiative is entirely voluntary.  We will be sending out a permission form this month for you to complete and return to school if you want to participate.




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.

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
  • 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.
  • Writing letters to Santa.
  • Discuss what Santa looks like and where he lives etc.
  • Discuss what it feels like to receive post.
  • 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. 




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.
  • 1 to 1 correspondence with respect to giving put 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.
  • Counting 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 safety scissors.
  • 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.
  • 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:

  • Encourage children to build snowmen (if we get some snow) and watch what happens as they melt.
  • Discuss the changing weather with your child.