Early years settings across the country have been gearing up for Christmas with a host of festive celebrations.
A RELIGIOUS CHRISTMAS
Little Dragons Nursery in Boston, Lincolnshire (above), learned the true meaning of Christmas with a Nativity play and Christingle Service, a candelit celebration to share the key messages of the Christian faith.
HE'S BEHIND YOU
Children and staff at Little Rascals Day Nursery in Walsall, the West Midlands, took to the stage to perform in their own pantomime of Cinderella. Children dressed as fairies, mice and cowboys, and showcased their dancing skills, while staff dressed as Cinderella, the Ugly Sisters and Prince Charming.
SANTA'S LITTLE HELPERS
Children from the Just Learning Nursery in Newcastle upon Tyne were given the very important job of decorating the Christmas tree at the Village Hotel in Newcastle with their hand-made decorations. They also raised money for the nursery chain’s chosen charity Great Ormond Street Hospital with a carol concert held in the hotel’s reception.
After all their hard work, the children were treated to a visit from Santa in his grotto and a meal at the hotel’s Italian restaurant.
AWAY IN A MANGER
Crossens Nursery School in Southport told the story of the birth of Jesus with a Nativity play held at their local church-St John’s Church in Crossens.
'O CHRISTMAS TREE, O CHRISTMAS TREE'
Happy Jays Nursery in Boroughbridge, North Yorkshire, received an early Christmas present when they were announced the winner of the Boroughbridge Christmas Tree competition, whose theme was past, present and future.
The nursery received the most votes for their card and paper tree with handmade decorations, which included candles, painted baubles and handprints.
Nursery manager Andrea Proctor said, ‘The staff and children put a lot of hard work and effort into making the tree, with some excellent ideas coming from the children. We were all very proud of the finished result and delighted when we heard we had won.’
GIVING AND RECEIVING
Children at Wise Owl Nursery in Scunthorpe, North Lincolnshire, spread Christmas cheer when they delivered their hand-made Christmas cards to key people working in their local community.
The children gave cards to the staff at the local chiropractors and sandwich shop, who in return gave them each a bumble bee window sticker, and a special sandwich with the words Merry Christmas written on with icing.
Childminders from Ledbury, Hertfordshire organised a Christmas party for the children they mind. A highlight of the event was a visit from Father Christmas.
Busy Bees Nursery in Chelmsford, Essex transformed the setting into a giant Christmas wonderland grotto for the day with themed games and activities on offer for local children and their families, along with a visit from Father Christmas.
Games and activities included a bauble hunt, letter writing to Santa, calendar making and face painting. There were also Christmas stalls selling everything from books to cards and jewellery.
LETTERS TO SANTA
Children from Swanbourne House Nursery School in Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire, wrote letters to Santa informing of him of their Christmas wish list, before posting them at the village post office.
The children from Stepping Stones Day Nursery in Lingley Mere took part in their annual Nativity play for parents and families.
CAROLS BY TORCHLIGHT
Parents and children were invited to Elmscot Day Nursery in Cheshire enjoyed singing carols by torchlight around the Christmas tree, with mince pies and mulled wine. The festivities continued during the pre-school Christmas play which this year was ‘An Easy Cheesy Nativity’.
A FESTIVE OCCASION
Children, parents and staff of kidsunlimited in Watford enjoyed the recent festive carol concert
The nursery manager said, 'The youngsters dressed up in costumes for this special occasion and created an unforgettable atmosphere and real Christmassy mood.'
They also invited the Booster Cushion Theatre and the children were quickly drawn to the story of Little Red Riding Hood. To their delight they were asked by the narrator to join in and help him to tell the story.