8 Nov 2019
November UpdateWe have been tripping the "Light Fantastic" this week as we took part in activities related to Bonfire Night and Diwali. The impending Winter darkness is the perfect excuse to indulge in crafts using as much colour and glitter as possible - and it isn't even Christmas yet!
To this end we have made bonfire pictures and also Diwali lamps as last weekend marked the celebration of the Hindu Festival of Lights. The children watched a video explaining the significance of Diwali which is just one of the festivals from other cultures which we celebrate in a small way as part of the Religious and Moral Education part of the curriculum. As Remembrance Sunday is this weekend, we have also been making a poppy wreath for the Nursery and talking to the children about why we wear poppies at this time of year.
As you might imagine from all of this, our paint and glitter supplies have been severely depleted (especially the glitter!) and our cleaner Marissa deserves a medal for her efforts . We really couldn't do without her and are very grateful for the way in which she contributes to making the nursery a welcoming space at the start of each day.
Next week our colour of the week will be grey (very suitable for November) and the opposites will be 'hard' and 'soft'.
1 Nov 2019
Halloween SpooktacularHalloween has made for a Spook-tacular start to our Winter term at Duchal. The children have got into the 'spirit ' of things making pumpkin soup, having fun playing with spider-infested playdough and black gloop, making paper bats and to top it all off, the Duchal Halloween Party was held yesterday morning. This was great fun - even the teachers dressed up a little and everyone managed to get through without being TOO scared ( ha ha).The weather has been unseasonably kind so we have also been making the most of our garden and taking the opportunity to play in the fresh air while we still can and the children have had lots of fun with all the fallen leaves
Our opposites this week were Dark and Light, so Madame Camelford has been teaching the children the French version of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star (' Brille Brille Petite Etoile' for those of you who want to learn). We also had a look at what happens when light is shone through a prism and magically makes a rainbow, which fascinated some of our young scientists.
Our colour of the week next week will be orange and our opposites will be In and Out. We will enjoy some Bonfire night crafts and in preparation for Remembrance Sunday will be making some poppy pictures.
7 Oct 2019
Autumn NewsletterThe Summer seems a distant dream as Autumn rolls in. All the children have settled in to Nursery life seamlessly, with our older “teddies” loving the responsibility of being mentors to the younger “teddies” who have just started with us.
Our Rainforest topic has been an overwhelming success, and the nursery has progressively transformed itself in to a jungle full of vibrant colours, adorned with all sorts of exotic animals such as butterflies, caterpillars, lizards and toucans. The children have made rainmakers, (can we blame them for all the wet weather recently?), tribal necklaces as well as monkeys and toucans.
Music ignites all areas of child development and at Duchal we are very lucky to have our own music specialist in Mrs Campbell who has a Masters in Music.
Her latest initiative introduced the children to “draw what you hear”.
Playing a mix of classical, pop, bagpipes and traditional music the children then literally drew what they heard! Whether it was long loopy lines for slow music, up and down angular lines for when the tempo increased or just using different colours as the music differed.
SCIENCE in Sept-STEM-ber
September saw the children conducting their own science experiments in our activity room. There was masses of weighing and measuring going on, creating plenty of messy fun. However, there is method to our madness as we know that science helps children develop vital life-skills such as problem-solving, communication and research.
There are also the obvious benefits of then eating what has been measured, whether it be a smoothie or a jam tart!!
NUMBER FUN FOR MATHS
Making Maths fun is a top priority for our Blue Teddies in their pre school learning year. So what better way of starting to recognise your numbers by finding them in a bowl of jelly!
With the luxury of a dedicated quiet room for concentrated study for our blue teddies in their pre school year, our teachers are able to give plenty of time each day in developing skills with our older children.
Duchal was established in 1967 by local parents and continues to be run as a parents’ co-operative. It is the only specialist pre school nursery in the area and isn’t part of a larger school. We are passionate about early years education and preparing each child for school in a fun, nurturing way.
We have a fantastic team of staff, with many years of experience in childcare, all of whom are parents themselves, Duchal is a very caring, nurturing, happy nursery and we pride ourselves in knowing each child extremely well and welcome them and their family into the Duchal extended family.
With a purpose built nursery, including 3 separate rooms, an enclosed safe garden in a park setting Duchal is designed to give parents’ the confidence that they have given their child the best start in life.
If you are looking for pre school place for your child please get in touch to arrange a visit meet the teachers and find out more about what Duchal can offer your child.
24 Sep 2019
Draw what you hear! New Music initiativeWe love introducing new activities at Duchal, and today the children absolutely loved our "Draw what you Hear" session. Playing a mix of classical, pop, bagpipes and traditional music the children then literally drew what they heard!!
There was no right or wrong, everyone just drew what they felt from the music - whether it was long loopy lines for slow music, more up and down angular lines when the tempo increased or just using different colours.
Led by Mrs Campbell, who has a Masters Degree in Music, we all had great fun and lovely to try out something new and different - give it a go at home!!
13 Sep 2019
Open Morning Saturday 21st September 9am - 11amLooking for pre school nursery places? Come along to Duchal Nursery's Open Morning on Saturday 21st September from 9am - 11am. The only specialist nursery in the area dedicated to pre school education.
13 Sep 2019
Update on Nursery ActivitiesIt feels like we are really in the swing of the new term at Duchal now. All of our new children have settled so well and already feel like well established members of our Duchal family.
Our rainforest theme is proving to be very popular and children have been making tribal necklaces this week as well as completing their animal and insect art work started earlier in the term. It really is a jungle out there! ( More accurately 'in here').
Wet and dry have been our opposites, and while there are plenty of practical examples of this in nursery activities, we thought it would be fun to have some potion making going on and the children have had great fun mixing dry ingredients ( coffee, glitter, salt, lentils, flour etc) with wet ingredients ( water, shampoo, glue, paint, shaving foam ). We also made some cup cakes to illustrate the real life examples of mixing wet and dry and the blue teddies enjoyed picking numbers out of jelly as part of their number recognition work. Some elementary chemistry going on at Duchal here and we are sure we spotted a few budding scientists in our midst. Fine motor skills have been utilised to the full as children tried to thread pipe cleaners through colanders and sieves as well as threading their pasta tribal necklaces . We will be focusing on scissor work this term also, so if there is any opportunity at home to practice cutting ( with safety scissors of course) this should be encouraged, as children become quite frustrated when they can't cut things out for themselves. Old magazines and a pair of childs scissors can fill a happy half hour and help greatly to develop this important skill.
Next week our colour of the week will be green ( can see the jungle getting a bit overgrown with this one ) so we look forward to seeing what interesting items appear on the green news table. Blue teddy homework will go out as usual on Thursdays to be returned on Monda. Please note that homework is optional - if the children dont feel like doing it there is no pressure .
It looks like Summer may be paying a last visit to Kilmacolm this next few days, so whatever you are all doing, we hope that you have an enjoyable weekend.
The Duchal Teachers.
4 Sep 2019
Specialist AreasWith the luxury of 3 separate classrooms we are able to spend quiet, quality time with our pre school children to prepare them for the move to primary school.
This week we are starting to work on fine motor skills for our blue teddies who have just started their pre school year.
Fine motor skills are essential for performing every day tasks - cleaning teeth, opening lunch boxes, and academic skills - writing, colouring, cutting, and without the ability to complete these tasks a child's self esteem can suffer and compromise academic performance. https://www.edubloxtutor.com/fine-motor-skills-handwriting/
14 Aug 2019
AGM Monday 19th August 8pmAs a parents co-operative Duchal parents are involved in the running of the nursery. Make sure you come along to the AGM on Monday 119th August 8pm upstairs in the Community Centre to find out what is in store for this year, meet new parents and collect uniform for the new term.
2 Aug 2019
Head TeacherWe are delighted to announce the appointment of Mrs Victoria Gheur as Head Teacher for Duchal Nursery.
Mrs Gheur has been with Duchal for 3 years, during which time she has embraced the Duchal ethos, working with our dedicated team of staff to create a warm, caring learning environment. She has a wealth of experience in early years care and will be an asset to the nursery.
She has a wonderful rapport with the children, and a clear understanding of the aims of Duchal in providing for our young teddies.
The Staff and Directors are delighted that Mrs Gheur has been appointed to be our Head Teacher and are all looking forward to working with her as the new term starts in a few weeks.
We are confident that under her leadership, we will continue to deliver the very best start in life for all our nursery children, now and in preparation for school, in the future.
11 Jun 2019
Ambulance CrewWhat an amazing and inspiring day!
We were totally spoilt today with a visit from Doug, one of our Duchal dads, who is an air ambulance doctor and his paramedic colleague Dave. They work out of Glasgow airport on the air ambulance.
Having spent the term learning all about transport the children were fascinated by hearing about the pilot who also works with them. They mainly cover the west of Scotland but can be called out anywhere depending on the emergency.
They arrived in an ambulance and the kids were allowed to try the oxygen masks, turn on the blue lights and sirens. They also tested their oxygen levels and pulse with a machine and tried on the air ambulance helmets.
Obviously this was great fun however we also had a very important life lesson and learnt how to call for an ambulance and the importance of knowing where you live if you call 999.
Thank you so much to Doug and Dave for an inspiring and fun morning
4 Jun 2019
Preparing for the Next StepPreparing for the next step in life is an important part of Duchal life, whether it be learning to be independent, for the 1st time away from parental guidance or getting ready for the move to primary school, Duchal staff are there to make the transition as smooth as possible.
With our low pupil to teacher ratio and 3 separate rooms we are able to concentrate on the different requirements of our children.
With the summer term flying by, our older children are all set for the move to school, and have been practising their fine motor skills and pencil grip with some writing practice. While the younger children have been having fun with magnet design - it takes a lot of concentration but in a fun way they are learning without realising!!
Get in touch to find out more about what Duchal can offer your child in their pre-school years
3 Jun 2019
Science & Art in One!We love a bit of science at Duchal. STEM learning comes in all shapes and sizes and more often than not the children don't realise they are having a science lesson!!
The children have had great fun making their own playdough (it is always more satisfying to play with something that you have made youself!!!). Close attention was give to ensure they had the right quantities of ingredients and then that they were carefully mixed to create the perfect end product with the right texture!
The Science lesson was swiftly followed by an Art lesson, seeing lots of creativity and innovation with playdough art!!