Early Years News and Events

Filed in Early Years Newsletters | Posted on February 7, 2020

Future Events

  • Friday 14th February finish for Half Term-Pre-School only
  • Friday 27th March Baby Unit ‘Stay and Play’session 9am-10am.
  • Friday 27th March last day of Spring Term-Pre-School only
  • Monday 30th March until Thursday 9th April – Scamps for Pre-School
  • Friday 10th until Monday 13th – Babies, Nursery and Scamps closed for Easter Weekend
  • Tuesday 14th until Friday 17th –Scamps for Pre-School
  • Monday 20th April- Pre-School and School inset Day
  • Tuesday 21st April- Pre-School and School back.

Polite Notices

  • Please may we also remind you that we are a nut-free site?
  • We are still observing some drivers not adhering to the 5mph speed limit. The site speed limit is set for the safety of your children and your cooperation with this is much appreciated.
  • When parking your car please help others by parking courteously.
  • Please make sure you are familiar with the one way system.
  • During the school holidays, it is equally as important to maintain the security of the site. Please can you make sure you close the main gates after gaining entry at these times?

Thank You.

Outdoor play is an important part of childhood. It’s exciting to see children in their natural environment – exploring their surroundings, being curious about what’s around them and finding joy in seeing new things. As a child, I always remember running around the park, digging earth in our garden, and climbing up and going down the slide. It is sad to see children spending less time outside. A recent study in the UK found that children today spend half of the time outside compared to their parents. As an Early Years Teacher, I know how vital outdoor play is to a child’s overall development and learning. Studies have shown that children can learn a lot from playing outdoors – from improved spatial recognition to simply understanding environmental tendencies. Simple activities such as seeing leaves change, running and jumping in rain puddles, or watching the flowers sprout during the spring, can make such a great difference.

So as the spring period fast approaches and we are all in hope of better weather talking about the outdoor advantages and benefits seems the natural thing to do. Silverhill prides itself on the use of its lovely grounds, a chance for children of all ages to connect with the natural world; take part in first hand experiences of life and growth; have endless opportunities for creativity and imagination and improved fitness and physical development. The countless benefits of outdoor play have a really positive impact on our children’s lives. There has been much research on the subject of the benefits of outdoor play.  Outside is a natural environment for children. There is a freedom associated with the space which cannot be replicated inside. If children feel at home in a particular space it seems natural to teach them in that area; education should not be a chore but an enjoyable worthwhile occupation. Outdoor play encourages children to gain knowledge and appreciation for the natural world. Children learn about the natural elements and their surroundings when they are outside. For example, they learn about the weather, the change in seasons, and different animals that are found outside.

There are also clear health benefits associated with outdoor learning. Children need daily exercise, vigorous enough to get them out of breath with their hearts and lungs working hard. NHS guidelines say that children under 5 need three hours exercise a day and that it should be with a mixture of bone strengthening, muscle building and cardiovascular. Exercise is clearly an essential component of children’s physical and emotional development. Physical skills are important for growth, physical coordination and the movement of the body. When children play outdoors they increase their ability to balance, jump, climb, throw, run and skip. We ensure that through activities such as running, climbing, digging and swinging, needs are more than met every day. Exercise also improves children’s emotional health, allowing for relaxation and calmness and a heightened sense of well-being .Exercise is clearly an essential component of children’s physical and emotional development. Role on the winter for all the outdoor learning we can connect with in the rain, snow, wind, and frost.

It can be observed that children playing and learning outdoors appear more active, absorbed, motivated and purposeful, and develop a more positive attitude to learning. Outdoor play increases imagination. Being outdoors gives children the opportunity to pretend to be anything they want, for example, to be a bear in the wild or a chef in the kitchen. The environment where we work and play affects our emotions. Children will often be less inhibited outside, and more willing to join in with activities, talk and come out of their shells. In small, busy spaces children’s behaviour can change, some can become more aggressive, while others become more solitary. Outdoor play provides children with the opportunity to gain social skills by interacting, collaborating and negotiating with others. Outdoors is the perfect place to learn through movement, which is one of the four vehicles through which children can learn, the others being play, talk and sensory experiences. All of these happen more naturally outside, but with so much space and so many opportunities to move in different ways.

As adults we have no excuse for keeping children confined indoors. We must embrace the winter months by wrapping up warmly to protect them from the cold temperatures, whilst in hotter spells, wear thin long sleeves tops, hats and sun glasses to protect against strong sun light.  It’s amazing how fresh air can blow away the cobwebs and make a world of difference to how we feel as adults and children. Walks, bike rides, football on the beach, visiting parks or simply playing in the garden will support their outdoor play and help their development. What’s more, the whole can family benefit.