Nursery - Home Learning

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Happy New Year Caterpillars!

Week beginning 4th January 2021


We are going to be learning from our homes until we are able to meet again in Caterpillar class.  Mrs Hawkins and Mrs Snelling know that you will try your very best and we look forward to seeing you as soon as we can for some fun,

laughter and learning.


If you would like to send us a picture of your learning or of any activities you are busy with at home we would love to see.


The activities below are for you to enjoy together and we

don't want you to feel any pressure to complete them.  We know that there will be lots of juggling of life, work and childcare. If you are able to spend time playing games, reading books together and sharing your child's favourite activities, that is brilliant.  For the children at school we will focus on the key text tasks and the maths tasks, so the remote learning reflects the learning in school.  The other activities will be available in the environment to explore and learn.

This term our key text is going to be Handa's Surprise.  Over the coming weeks we will dig deep into the story and explore many different activities.  This week we are only going to explore the front cover so if you have the story at home, try not to peek inside!

I want you to have really close look at the front cover. I've got some questions for you to have a think about with your grown ups.  Remember to try to answer in a full sentence, maybe even with a because in the middle.

What do you think the book is about?

Can you tell me why?

Do you know what a surprise is?

Have you ever had a surprise or have you ever surprised anyone else?

What do you think surprise might be in the story?

I thought it might be fun to practice your fantastic drawing skills.  If you have any fruit or vegetables could you try and draw them.  Think carefully about the shape and the colour of them.  Remember to hold the pencil between your thumb and forefinger.  Could you ask for some help to cut them in half and have a really close look at the patterns inside.  


Does the inside look like you thought it would or is it different?

Maybe this week you could challenge yourself to try a new fruit or vegetable?

Which fruits below have you tried and which are your favourites?

Can you put your brilliant counting heads on?  This song may help you.

 In class we have been looking at the numicon plates and deciding which ones represent each number.  Here is a reminder.  Can you count them in order and remember the number of holes in the numicon plate is its number.

Now for a quiz about the numicon plates-

What colour is number 3?

Is number 5 red or blue?

How many holes does the pink plate have?

What number comes after the yellow plate?

How many holes does number 9 have?

If you have some lego bricks, pasta pieces or beads can you count out 1, then 2, then 3 all the way to 5 and maybe even to 10.  Good luck!

Now you have your amazing counting heads on, can you count the different fruits below.  Remember to use your finger to touch each piece of fruit as you count.

Can you now hunt around your home for objects that are the colours below.  Which one is your favourite colour?

Next time you are able to go out for a walk or play in the garden can you try some of these maths challenges?  Good luck!

Can you search closely at the picture below and play I spy?  

Can you now find how many of each object there are hiding in the picture?

Below are some patterns.  Can you try and make the patterns in the air as big as you can and then get smaller and smaller.  Maybe now you can try to make the patterns on paper.  Remember to hold the pencil between your thumb and forefinger and tuck your others away behind.

We will send you out the new rhyme of the week so look out for that on ping.  We will put new activities on next Monday 11th for you to share and enjoy together.


Have a great week and please keep in touch with us if you have any questions or queries.  Both Mrs Snelling and Mrs Hawkins are in school all week so we will try to respond as quickly as we can.  I found this in my new favourite book, 'The boy, the mole, the fox and the horse' and thought it was perfect for how we may be feeling.

See you next week wonderful Caterpillars!






Week beginning 11th January 2021

Hello Caterpillars, I do hope you were able to get out for a nice walk or bike ride at the weekend. It was lovely to see you for a story on Friday and I will set up another one for us this week as well. 

Mrs Snelling and I have loved seeing all the things you have been up to, so please do keep the emails coming. 

This week we are going to continue to explore Handa's Surprise. I hope you didn't have a sneaky peek! We will be having a look at some photographs from Kenya and looking at a map of Africa. 

We have also got some phonics, along with making some musical instruments.

There is also a recipe for some non-cook playdough to support some busy hands activities as well as some maths, where we are continuing to develop counting skills. 

Please don't underestimate all the things you will be doing at home that support every area of the Early Years Curriculum. Everything from helping to get dressed in the morning, playing games together, digging in the garden, sharing stories, singing songs, building with construction toys such as Lego, cooking and counting and matching socks as they come out of the wash, will all support your child's development!


Okay, so last week we looked at the front cover of Handa's Surprise. Today I have part of the story for you to listen to. During the book I ask some questions, so you can pause the story at any point and have a chat with your grown up. 

The questions are to help with our prediction skills. Try and answer your questions in a full sentence and have a go at using because to explain your thinking a little further. 


I think...will happen because...

Maybe...will happen...because...

Well, Caterpillars! I don't know about you but I was not expecting that to happen! 

I wonder what will happen now?

I wonder how Handa will feel when she discovers all the fruit has gone?

How else could she surprise her friend?

Maybe you could draw a picture of a different surprise and email it to us. 

So, in the story there were some animals, and to carry on practicing your fantastic drawing and or painting skills, I have put photos of the animals below. Think about the different shapes you could make for each of the parts of the animals. Which colours could you use? Remember to hold the pencil between your thumb and forefinger.

Let's come back to the story now, where do you think it might be set? 

What is the same and what do you think is different? 

This story is set in Kenya which is a country in Africa. Let's take a closer look...

Click on the link below and fly from Brighton to Kenya on Google Earth. 

Once you've had some time exploring the maps and Google Earth, I have some photographs for you to look at. I'd like you to get your Incy Independent magnifying glass out and see what you notice? Some are photos of Kenya and some are England, where we live! 

Now let's have a go at something to get our hands strong! 

below is a recipe for making some playdough, hopefully the ingredients will be easy to get hold of. 


When you've made the playdough with your grown up, you could have a go at exploring different ways of changing the shape and size of it. 

Can you so these to the playdough

Squash, squeeze, roll, push, poke, press, twist, cut, pinch

What else could you do? 

Now time for the Rhyme of the week (I will also ping this to you as normal) 

Have a listen to the track below. 

Now some of you might have some instruments at home but I thought it might be fun to try and make some instruments to play along with this week's rhyme! 

You could have a look on these two websites to help you

I wonder if you might be able to have a go at repeating the rhythm.

Could you have a go at making and loud and quiet sounds with your instruments?

Ask your grownup to be a conductor and give you start and stop signs. 

And now for some maths. 

Have a go at the active challenges below to get you warmed up. 

Can you remember how many pieces of fruit Handa had in her basket?

Do you think you could collect 7 pieces of fruit (this could be anything, not just fruit!) then put them in a box or a bowl.

Then have a go at counting out 3 of these, pointing to each one as you say a number name. I wonder if you can arrange them in the shape of the Numicon plate?

Now put the fruits back and try with a different amount. If you can keep going.

You might want to return to a number if your child is getting a little stuck on the order of the numbers.

The objective of this activity to to be able to count up to 6 objects from a larger group and to be able to say a number name for each object. 

I've put the Numicon plates below to remind you of each shape. 

And finally, back to our story. 

Have another listen to the story so far (below is a recording without the questions) 

I's like you to listen out to see if you notice how the author describes the fruit in the story?

Did she just write, banana. If you're not sure why not have another listen. 

Why not see if you can describe some of the fruits that you might have at your house. 

I've also put some images of fruits.

Think about

What do they look like? (shape and colour) how do they look inside? is it the same or different?

How do they feel?

Can you smell anything?

Do you know what they taste like? 


Here are a couple of videos we made last year that will also be familiar to the Caterpillar class, so well worth a look. 

A few other ideas of things that we will have out in the environment next week that you could try out at home.

How about setting up a fruit and vegetable shop (this could be with real food, pretend food you might already have, or drawings of fruit) you could have bags or a purse/wallet and maybe some paper to mark make a shopping list. 

If you have some children's scissors at home, you could try making small snips across a piece of paper. If this is too easy, you could try drawing a line for children to follow. 

Dice games

Puzzles and turn-taking games

Week beginning January 18th 2021

Good morning to you all.  I hope you have had a good week of learning at home and are able to get out and go for a walk in between the rain.  Here is the learning for the week, please dip in and out as you have time.  We would love to hear from you all so please send pictures of your learning or any other news you would like to share.  The email address is


Remember to be kind to yourselves, we know that you are

juggling many things and that it is hard work being at home

with young people.  Everything that you will be doing will be

supporting your child in their development.  Playing games,

going for a scoot around the block, reading, watching Mr

Tumble, counting lego blocks, having a treasure hunt, singing rhymes,

getting dressed and helping with the household chores all help.  


This week we will read all of Handa's Surprise and focus on different parts of the story and answer questions using full sentences. We will also role play the story pretending to be different characters. In maths we will find different ways to share objects with our friends.  We will continue to explore the continent of Africa as well as some singing and busy hand activities.


Last week Mrs Hawkins read you the story of Handa's Surprise and we found out the animals took the fruit our of Handa's basket.  That was a surprise, I feel sad that Handa will have nothing to give to her friend Akeyo when she arrives.We are now going to watch the whole the story and I will put some questions for you at the end of the film.  Remember to answer the questions with a full sentence and try to use a connective to explain your ideas.



Well that was a surprise!


Was that was you thought would happen?

How do you think Handa felt when she looked in her basket and found the tangerines?

Why do you think Handa wanted to surprise her friend Akeyo?

Can you remember all the animals in the story - don't forget the goat!

Which one is your favourite fruit and why?

What do you think Handa and Akeyo did after the story ended?


I wonder if you can now retell the story of Handa's Surprise trying to remember all of the fruits and all of the animals.  Below are some pictures to help you retell the story.  When you tell your story can you use the language of first, next, then and last.  You could ask your grown up to film you retelling the story and send it myself and Mrs Hawl

Brilliant story telling.  If you can you print and cut out these pictures and make stick puppets to retell the story.  If you don't have lolly sticks you could use tea spoons or pencils

I know that last week you were thinking about the country of Kenya which is in the continent of Africa.  Kenya is the country that Handa and Akeyo live.  You thought last week about things that are the same and things that are different about Kenya and the United Kingdom, where we live. Here is a picture of the continent of Africa and also of the whole world.

Can you see where the country of Kenya is?

What other things can you notice on this map of Africa?

Can you find out any facts about the continent of Africa or the country of Kenya and email me to let me know?

Here is one for you - Kenya is home to the fastest moving animal on land in the world.  It can run 120 kilometres an hour.  Do you know what it is?

Its a cheetah!

Brilliant work so far Caterpillars.  Okay, here are a couple of Go Jetters clips for you to watch and find out more about Africa. Click on the links below to watch.

Below are two songs.  They are from a group called Ladysmith Black Mambazo.  They are a group from South Africa which is another country at the bottom of Africa.  I thought it would be lovely to listen to them and maybe even try to move like some of the animals from Handa's Surprise as you listen.  How do you think the elephant would move, how about the parrot and the giraffe.  Have a go at moving in different ways while you listen to the music.

Below are some traditional African patterns.  Have a really close look at them.

Which one do you like best and can you say why?

Which shapes can you see in the patterns?

What is your favourite colour used in the pattern?


Can you try and create your own African pattern using any materials you have at home, pens, crayons, pencils, paints, cutting from magazines.  Good luck - ask your grown up to take a picture and send it to me so I can see your wonderful work.

Now for some phonics.  Here is a song, Professor Brain, to help you explore some sounds your body can make.  Maybe you could add some more verses with your own ideas and sounds.  Now you are an expert singing the song you can teach it to your family!

Okay, brilliant work so far Caterpillars.  Now I would like you warm up for some maths and number work.  Can you try these number challenges before the main task?

Clap 8 times

Pat your legs 6 times

Turn around 4 times

Nod your head 10 times

Count 1-10 really slowly

Count 1-10 really quickly

Jump up and down 9 times


Terrific.  Now I would like you to watch the video and then see if you can find 4 

objects, they can be any objects - lego, dry pasta, apples, buttons, biscuits.  Can 

you now share the objects out with 2 soft animals or with yourself and your

grown up or even 2 plates.


How many different ways can you share out your objects?  Does the total always

stay the same?


Over the week you could try this activity with different objects and amounts.

I wonder if you have ever had a wonderful surprise from a friend or from your family.  How did it make you feel?

Can you look closely at the pictures below of Akeyo when Handa arrived with her surprise and they share the surprise - the tangerines.

Look closely at their faces.  How do you think they are feeling?

I think Akeyo would like to write a thank you card to Handa for being such a kind and thoughtful friend.  Have you ever made a thank you card for someone?  It's really fun to send and card and even better to receive a card.

Can you make a thank you card for a friend with a wonderful drawing and try to write your name and even a little message.

Here are a few ideas for you and also a range of printable thank you cards.

Last week Mrs Hawkins gave you a recipe for some no cook playdough which you may have been able to make and enjoy.  Its really important to strengthen the muscles in your hands and fingers to help you with your drawing, writing and holding a pencil.  There are lots and lots of activities that you can do to help with fine motor control.  Below are a range of activities that you can try.  You can change and adapt the activities as I know that its not always easy to find the resources.  Playing with lego and duplo will do the just as well!

Here is the rhyme of the week.  We will also send it to you on ping.  

Happy singing!

Below are some cards with some 'Would you rather' questions.  Can you use your wonderful language and give your answer to your grown up with a full sentence and remember to explain your ideas and thoughts using 'because'

Here are two 'spot the difference pictures'.  Can you use Incy's magnifying glass to have a really good look at the picture and notice the differences?

After all of that brilliant learning it would be lovely to listen and enjoy a relax kids so lay down, close your eyes and relax.

Have a brilliant week and remember that you can contact Mrs Snelling and Mrs Hawkins on the email with any questions or to share what you are doing at home.

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