Early Start Pre-School
Early Start Home Learning
We want to offer you some ideas to help you continue your child's learning during the school closure. We do appreciate that keeping your child engaged whilst at home may not be easy and you may also be trying to work from home yourself. Please don't put yourself or your child under any pressure. A little goes a long way. Most importantly abide by the social distancing advice given by the government; enjoy this time at home with your children; stay safe and healthy.
So much of what we do with our pupils in Early Start is based around establishing a routine that the children understand and that allows them to develop their independence. Where possible, maintaining a solid daily routine will be really important and good for your mental health too! Were we in school, our theme at the moment would be Springtime and in our role play corner we would have a garden centre with bulbs and soil for digging and planting. Talk with your child about Springtime. The bears, hedgehogs and other animals wake up; the flowers start to grow; it starts to get brighter and baby animals are born. The children could collect some flowers, if possible. Read any books you may have that link to springtime. Ask your child to recall and retell you what the book was about. Use the following language about Spring - lambs, growth, leaves, flowers, blossoms, daffodils, tulips, birds, stem, root, petals, bulb, compost, green.
What follows are ideas to support your child's learning; activities we continue throughout the year in Early Start:
Social and Personal Development
- Say hello, goodbye, please and thank you.
- Clean the table. Set the table.
- Take turns and share with friends and family members.
- Work as part of a small group or team within your home.
Language and Literacy
- Role Play: create a shop, garden centre, doctors or restaurant in your home.
- You (the adult) choose a story and talk about the characters and what happens. Ask simple questions.
- Talk about a book of their choosing.
- Sing songs and nursery rhymes, with or without actions.
- Oral Diary: Encourage your child to tell you what they have done today (even if you have spent the day together!)
- Do 'Show and Tell' just like in school. Invite your child to talk about a particular toy and ask the questions their friends in class would: What's Teddy's favourite game? What does he like to eat and drink? Where in your home does he live? Does Teddy have a favourite movie?
- Pre-writing: colouring pictures; cutting and rolling playdough with scissors, cutters and rolling pins, if possible. Threading penne pasta on wool or string.
- Encourage mark-making with pencils, crayons, markers, chalk, paintbrushes etc.
- Constant use of mathematical language: full/empty, nearly full, heavy/light, big, medium, small, tall, short.
- Revision of colours.
- Sort items by colour. Hunt for a particular colour at home.
- Learn how to make new colours by mixing paints (if available.)
- Complete a jigsaw.
- Play with construction toys, discussing shape and size.
- Sand and/or water play, if possible, discussing capacity: full and empty.
- Practise counting. Move objects, giving each object a number name.
- Revision of shapes: circle, square, triangle, rectangle, oval, heart and star. Talk about these shapes and find them in the home.
- Free drawing.
- Make an Easter card.
- Handprint and finger painting.
- Junk art using various waste recycling items.
- Cutting and sticking using different types of paper and a variety of resources.
- Use musical instruments in play. Percussion instruments – bells, drums, shakers, tambourine, triangle, maracas, castanets.
- Ask your child to teach you the games we play: Ship, Sea, Shore; Traffic Light Game and The Bean Game, What’s the Time Mr. Wolf?
- Revise the poses learnt in yoga: easy pose (cross legged), child's pose, mountain pose, cow pose, dog pose, cat pose, and cobra (snake pose).
- P.E. With Joe The Body Coach TV, Live on YouTube, Mon – Fri, 9a.m.
- ‘Andy’s Wild Adventures’ on CBeebies.
Some Useful Links:
YouTube - Ways to Learn Through Play Episode 3 - Spring
MOST IMPORTANTLY: Interact, talk and play games, not necessarily online but engage in role play with your child. Allow them to pretend to make you tea; to be your doctor or serve you in their 'shop' or 'restaurant'. Complete a jigsaw together; get outside for a run around or walk together; build a fort or use items for recycling to make a junk model and talk, talk, talk!
Finally, please know that you are all in our thoughts. Say hello to the children from us: we miss them tremendously. Be safe and we look forward to when we can all be together again. Have a happy Easter and we will be in touch after the break.
Miss Leacy, Miss Murray, Breda and Susan