Monday, April 8, 2013

Slane Road April/May Newsletter 2013

Mother Hubbards Newsletter

April-May 2013
Firstly we would like to Welcome you all back from the Easter holidays and we hope you all enjoyed the break. We would also like to welcome back Rachel Hogge who has returned to work after her maternity leave.

In April, Noah in playschool will turn two, Tauras in Montessori will be four and Maia in our afterschool room turns eight years old. In May, Aidan in our playschool room will turn two, Evie in toddlers will also be two this month and Liadh in Pre-Montessori will be 3 years old. We wish them all a Big Happy Birthday from us all here at Mother Hubbards.

We would like to thank you all for your participation and contributions towards The National Pyjama Day 2013 which was held on Friday the 8th of March. We raised an outstanding €555.80.

Dates for your calendar
At this moment we would like to take this opportunity to remind parents of our children in Montessori that they will finish up on the 28th of June 2013. Montessori class will also be going on a day trip to Grove Gardens & Open farm before they finish up. Date, time and price to follow.

What we are doing in the rooms this month


We would like to welcome Ryan to our Toddler group who has started with us. This month in the toddler room the children are busy having lots of fun being involved in activities which implement Aistears themes into their curriculum. For Identity and Belonging the children have been spending time looking at their family trees, taking the time to talk, point out their families under the theme of communicating. The children have fun interacting with one another through movement and music also participating in group activities such as storytelling, painting and play dough. Wellbeing is important for the children to develop relationships and strong attachments with their peers. The children develop these relationships during activities such as mealtimes and playtime. The children go for walks and play outside in the garden a lot through this they are benefiting from the theme of Thinking and Exploring. They also discover new and different new things in their environments while participating in these activities. The children will be planting seeds in the garden this term and will have lots of fun doing so as they will be hands on in the mud. The toddlers are still busy with their art and crafts basing them around spring.


In playschool the children have settled back from the Easter break and are looking forward to enjoying some new activities. We would like to welcome Nicole and Aidan to our group who have joined us from the toddler group. This term the children will be part of a process and will be hands on planting flowers to decorate our garden area. The children will also care for their flowers as they blossom throughout the summer. This activity links into Aistears theme of Thinking and Exploring, where the children get to enjoy the outdoors as well as exploring their environments and discovering new textures. In playschool the children will be learning about Farm Animals and we will base their arts and crafts and songs on this as the children learn the nursery rhyme Old Mac Donald. We all know this is an old favourite so sing along at home with them if you wish. The children will go outside to our garden as much as possible as the weather begins to pick up. We will implement some of our curriculum outside also such as storytelling, which comes under the theme of communicating and will play games such as ring-a-ring-a-rosie to encourage their social skills and in turn build new relationships with one another and their key worker.  The children will continue to add to their spring displays with new materials and display these in their rooms.


In April in Pre-Montessori the children welcome a new face to their group, Conor who has joined them from playschool. The children will be busy like our other groups planting seeds and taking care of them, watering them regularly as they grow throughout the summer months. The children will also incorporate Aistears Themes into their curriculum as they implement their activities learning and developing through the themes such as wellbeing, Thinking and Exploring, communicating and identity and belonging. The children will be busy learning about the Farm and the animals on the farm. They will also learn about things that grow on the farm and with planting their seeds the children will gain the experience of what farm life is all about. The children in Pre-Montessori will also be looking at the theme ‘On the Beach’. Here the children will discuss the beach and base their activities around this. Also in this theme the children will learn about the different types of weather with hope that we will see some sun coming our way soon.

Pre-Montessori 2

Welcome back to all the children in Pre-Montessori 2 after the Easter break. We hope you all had a lovely break and ate plenty of chocolate eggs and bunnies, Yummy. During April Pre-Montessori 2 will be continuing on with their spring theme learning about the life cycle of a frog and will be doing plenty of painting and colouring linked to this. This is also linked to the implementation of the themes relating to Aistear as the theme identity and belonging says children should see themselves as capable learners. The children hope that the weather will pick up so that they can get busy planting their flowers and enjoy watching them grow. During May they have planned in their curriculum to learn about farm animals and the animals in the Zoo. So in Pre-Montessori the children will be busy little bees learning and having lots of fun as they do so. They hope to go outside as much as possible also with the hope that the snow has finally gone.


The Montessori teachers would like to welcome all their children back from their long Easter break. For April the children’s planned curriculum will involve learning about the farm, but their main topic for the month being about the body, the organs in the body and the functions of the organs in the body. This topic relates to the themes within Aistear also as the theme wellbeing states that children should be as healthy as can be and that they should be aware of their individual bodies and their changing abilities. The children will also be learning about the Continents with Africa being the first one on their list as they discuss and look at pictures of Africa relating to its culture, food, music, clothing, tribes and animals. During the month of May the children will be learning about summer with the beach being their theme of the month. In this theme they will also learn about sea life and the animals that live in the sea. The children will also look forward to taking part in their Sports Day which is an annual event for the children in Montessori.


With the Easter break out of the way the afterschool children will be back in action completing their homework and with First Holy Communion getting closer for some of our children they look forward to doing various FUN activities of their choice which involve song and dance and arts and crafts. With the weather picking up the children will be participating in a lot of outdoor games and sports. We hope you all enjoyed your Easter Holidays.

Feedback of Satisfaction Surveys

In relation to the feedback from the satisfaction Surveys it has come to our attention that many parents do not know what Aistear and Siolta are. Therefore below is a summary of both Frameworks. We have also noted that parents do not know where the following folders are located;

·         Health & Safety

·         Policies and Procedures

·         Comments/Complaints Folder

All the above can be found on the table on the left hand side in our reception area.


What is Aistear?

Aistear is an Early Childhood curriculum framework that presents children learning and development using four themes. These themes are Well-being, Identity and Belonging, Communicating and Exploring and Thinking. These themes are designed to describe what children learn, the dispositions, attitudes, value, life skills, knowledge and understanding of the world around them. Here is a small summary of what the themes are and there aims.

·         Well-being- this theme is about children being happy, healthy and confident

Aim: children will be healthy and as fit as can be.

·         Identity and Belonging- this theme is about children developing a positive sense of who they are, and feeling valued and respected as part of a family and community.

Aim: children will have strong self-identities and will feel respected and affirmed as unique individuals with their own life stories.

·         Communicating- this theme is about children sharing their experiences, thoughts, ideas and feelings with others growing confidence and competence in a variety of ways and for a variety of purposes.

Aim: Children will broaden their understanding of the world by making sense of experiences through language.

·         Exploring and Thinking- this theme is about children making sense of the things, places and people in their world.

Aim: Children will learn about and make sense of the world around them by engaging and exploring the environment in which they are in.



What is Siolta?

Siolta is the National Quality Framework for Early year’s children services. Siolta sets out national standards all of which are vital areas of importance for children’s services. The 16 standards are as follows;

1.      Rights of the child- Ensuring each child’s rights as human beings are being met

2.      Environments- Ensuring Environments both indoors and outdoors are well maintained and safe.

3.      Parents and Families- Valuing and involving parents and families.

4.      Consultation-Ensuring inclusive decision making.

5.      Interactions-Fostering constructive interactions between both children and adults.

6.      Play- Ensuring each child has ample time to play.

7.      Curriculum- Encouraging each child’s holistic development and learning.

8.      Planning and Evaluation- enriching all aspects of practice within the setting requires observation, planning, action and evaluation.

9.      Health and Welfare- promoting health and welfare requires protection from harm in partnership with trust and respect.

10.  Organisation- organising and managing resources effectively requires clearly communicated policies and procedures.

11.  Professional Practise- Practising in a professional manner requires that individuals have skills, knowledge and values within the setting.

12.  Communication- communicating effectively is I the best interests of the child with respect and confidentiality upheld.

13.  Transitions- this requires policies and procedures that promote sensitive management of transitions

14.  Identity and Belonging- the promotion of this standard also requires policies and procedures clearly defined.

15.  Legislation and Regulation- Being compliant requires that all relevant regulations and legislative requirements are met or exceeded.

16.  Community Involvement- this requires the establishment of networks and connections evidenced by policies and procedures and actions which extend and support all adult’s and children’s engagement with the wider community.

Siolta challenges everyone working in the ECCE sector to think about the quality of experiences we provide for young children. Within each of the standards there are components set out also.

Reminder to all parents

We would like to take this opportunity to remind all parents of sessional/part-time children to please ensure that they adhere to the set times allocated to them for their children and collect them on time in order for our centre to adhere to Staff/child ratios. As it has come to our attention that sessional part-time children are not being collected on time. If sessional/part-time children arrive late some mornings and although this may be the case, children still need to be collected at their agreed time regardless of what time they came to the setting at. This is stated in our parent’s handbook which all parents must read and sign when their children first attend this setting. Therefore when children are not collected on time parents are in breach of their contract with Mother Hubbards. We would like to remind parents of our full-time children that we close at 6:00pm sharp.

Mother Hubbards, 56 Blackcastle Demesne, Slane Road, Navan.