Busy Nightingales

Our Nightingales have been busy developing lots of skills this week. At the start of the week we had Amy from SALT come in for communication development. The children enjoyed Amy’s letter box game, cars and bubbles.

The children have been working hard towards their physical development targets. We are seeing lots of rolling, tummy time , crawling and walking happening. Our Nightingales work very hard towards their physical development skills on a daily basis and we couldn’t be prouder of them. Here are some of our highlights from physical development.

Nightingales have also been outside riding the bikes and enjoying the swing at playtime. We have a new bike in the playground and some of our Nightingales had go on it.

The children have loved exploring the Italian sensory holiday. Water, sand, boats, shells , garlic, Italian music and sun glasses were explored this week.

We had one Nightingale go to a football match this week! Elliots Mum has shared some photos of Elliot enjoying the Villa match. Elliot enjoyed going on the train and we heard Elliot loved it when a goal was scored and everyone cheered! Elliot you look like you enjoyed your evening out at the football.

Our star of the week is BS. BS has been eating his lunch well and trying new cutlery in the process. Well done!

Thank you to our hard working Nightingales children and staff this week. Everyone enjoy the weather and have a lovely weekend.

Eid Mubarak!

Eid Mubarak to our families! We have been sent some lovely photos of one of our Nightingales children celebrating Eid this week with their family. Zahra you look beautiful!

In class the children continued to explore Ramadan and Eid by accessing the pendulum to reach and manipulate the bottles and cups to make gold and yellow markings on the black paper on the floor.

We saw some excellent physical development skills being put in to action during the Eid sessions. Pupils accessing different environments by walking and also standing when using the tuff tray.

The swimming pool has been fixed and Nightingales had their weekly swimming session. Physio Ben was present alongside Jack who is an OT for Walsall. We saw lots of whole body movements, reaching for stimuli in the water and splashing!

During music this week we have added a music pendulum to enable some of our children to access drums or tambourines suitable to their current physical ability but also offering a challenge to develop their physical skills. It was a big hit! we even saw some children who were accessing the drum session come over independently to explore.

We saw children in the drumming group explore by reaching for the drum and banging. Others enjoyed the sound of the drum from a distance and showed their enjoyment by moving their body and vocalising.

Nightingales star of the week is Joshua! Joshua was fantastic during music this week. Joshua requested more drumming by placing his hand on the drum. When the drum was not sounded Joshua would start to vocalise towards the familiar adult. Well done Joshua , we are seeing some lovely moments of communication development.

Have a lovely weekend – The Nightingales Team.

Welcome to Summer Term

We have started our summer term and the topic is ’Summer Holidays!’. We have started to explore summer holidays this week and the children have loved playing in the sand!

This term the children will be exploring the following summer related activities –

Stories – there will be two stories for learners to explore and they are ’Ernest and I’ written by Joanna Grace and ’Look what I found at the seaside’ by Moira Butterfield. Both stories give the children an opportunity to explore objects with different tactile properties and sounds which are common with the beach and ocean. We aim to bring both books to life and bring the ocean and beach into the classroom. Here are some of the moments we captured during the first session of the stories being told this week >

Celebrations – we will be celebrating Ramadan\Eid and the Queens Jubilee this term. This week we started to explore Ramadan. The children used their problem solving skills and fine motors skills at the tuff tray and the pendulum. The children also explored the tastes of Ramadan by trying Dates and Chapatis.

Going on Holiday – the children will be exploring the experiences of a holiday in Italy. There will be a beach, the smells of garlic, lemon, coffee or herbs, the colours of red, white and green, the sounds of music , the weather (warm or windy), the attractions (Leaning Tower of Pisa) and the items we may take on holiday with us. Here are some moments we captured this week >

Sensory Holiday – in the sensory room for the children’s body awareness and movement session the children will experience and explore music related to countries which will be supplemented by smells (Jasmine for Greece), reaching (Flying a kite by reaching for ribbons), movement (shaking the foil blanket to imitate the waves of the ocean), feel (the small fan and feeling the wind on their face) and movements which is encouraged throughout the session as the children explore the different stimuli.

The Nightingales will also have familiar routines and sessions such as wellbeing, music, physical activity and free play. The children have loved exploring the start of summer this week and we look forward to seeing more happy smiles.

Have a lovely long weekend – The Nightingales Team.

Have a lovely Easter

Nightingales and Owls have joined together this week. Unfortunately we have had some poorly Owls and Nightingales this week. We all hope you feel better soon! Nightingales may also appear in the Owl blog so make sure you take a look.

We have enjoyed Easter exploration and hunting for the easter eggs. Eggs were hidden in boxes, containers , the tuff tray amongst the straw and under material. Lots of problem solving skills was required when hunting for the eggs. The children loved the straw and were seen manipulating, raising their arms, to then releasing it and then watching it fall.

The switch was a favourite in the tuff tray – we saw awareness of the sound because of the switch being brought to the ear and pressing the switch when the sound disappeared. We saw some fantastic reaching at the Easter pendulum and cause and effect skills took place at the rabbit tray by pressing the switch and making the rabbit move and sound.

We hope you have a lovely half term – The Nightingales Team.

Easter & Holi

This week the weather decided to return to winter but Nightingales are preparing for Mr Sun mans return and have been preparing our herb garden by planting seeds into pots. We have lots more seeds to SOW so we will be continuing this.

Nightingales have started exploring Easter. There was an Easter tuff tray with straw, different sized eggs with some opening hiding a surprise and little chickens were scattered hidden in the straw. The Easter pendulum had different sized eggs that could open for a surprise, shake for noise or pull and spring back. We have seen excellent use of problem solving and fine motor skills.

There is a new swing in the green room and Nightingales have been testing it out. We saw some excellent communication whereby we saw the request for ‘more’ through Makaton signing.

Nightingales have been exploring the Holi festival for the past couple of weeks. As you have seen in a previous blog the children had the opportunity to explore the holi coloured powder used in the festival celebration. We also had colourful balloons and we released the air so the children experienced the rush of air on their skin. We saw excellent body awareness where the children would laugh and smile at the sensation. To complete our Holi celebration there was face painting and decorating biscuits with colourful decorations.

We celebrated a birthday in Nightingales and we would like to say a Happy Birthday to Tom. A big thank you to Toms Mum and Dad for the birthday cake and chocolate buttons which was shared with his friends. Have a lovely birthday weekend Tom!

Have a lovely weekend – The Nightingales Team.

The Great Outdoors & Developing Skills

What a lovely week of weather we have had this week. The children have had lots of time outside. Much needed to support the children’s mental wellbeing – from the smiles and laughs we observed the children have very much enjoyed it!

Outside the children have enjoyed the go-karts, swings , spinning seat and garden games. The children have also been looking after the garden by giving the flowers a water. The children have also liked to explore some of the plants such as the feel and smell of rosemary.

In cause and effect this week we have changed some of the switches to increase the difficultly and offer challenges for the children to explore further. Was lovely to see Joshua independently exploring the switches in the classroom by walking around and pressing the switch. The fan was a favourite.

We observed some amazing physical developments this week. We work daily on developing physical skills such as walking. The confidence in the children and the progression towards the physical skills is brilliant. Well done to Imogen who is working towards her independent walking target. Imogen is taking more independent steps every week. Well done to Tom as well this week because we saw some lovely steps towards the interactive whiteboard whilst being support and guided with his hands.

We have started to join our swimming sessions with Owls. Its a lovely way for the children to socially interact and build relationships. Physio Ben was joined by physio student Imogen in the pool today. We saw plenty of smiles and laughs today. Coming to the pool is brilliant for our children’s mental wellbeing but fantastic for their physical development.

Our star of the week is BS! BS is using communication to express likes and dislikes. BS always listens and has lovely manners, saying thank you in purposeful situations.

Have a lovely weekend and enjoy the weather! – The Nightingales Team

Festival of Colours – Happy Holi!

This week the Nightingales have been celebrating the festival of ’Holi’. Holi a Hindu festival is known as the festival of colours. Nightingales explored ’Holi’ at the pendulum frame where there was a variety of colourful balloons filled with varying stimuli which gave the children a different experience when manipulated. Some of the balloons made noises and some could be stretched and when released would bounce back.

The Nightingales children also explored the colourful holi powder. The colourful powder was released at a height where we saw visual tracking and we also placed the powder in a tray whereby the children reached in and made marks.

During exploring ’Holi’ the story ’festival of colours’ allowed the children to explore how traditionally colourful holi powder is made from flowers. The children were able to explore the flowers by pulling away the petals or grasping and releasing the flower heads.

It was great to see the children in the sensory room showing awareness of sounds and visually tracking objects. We are also very proud of Zahra who is doing amazing at building tolerance to tummy time but also attempting reaching at the same time. Well done Zahra !

We had some lovely weather this week so we made sure our Nightingales took full advantage! We used the swings, slide and the bikes!

Big thank you to the Nightingales teaching assistants Denise, Lauren, Amanda and our lunch time supervisor Lisa who have made a start on the garden outside our classroom this week. Its had a good clear out and fresh flowers have been planted. I want to say a big thank you to Lisa and Denise who have donated flowers and the garden gnomes. As we lead up to Easter the Nightingales children will start to sow seeds and plant bulbs to add to our garden. We will keep you updated on how our garden is growing.

Stars of the Week!

We have two stars of the week in Nightingales. Firstly Zahra who has been doing amazing at tummy time. Zahra is slowly increasing the time spent on her tummy and is becoming much more tolerable. Well done Zahra ! Our second star of the week is Aminah. During registration we look for our friends from the pictures. This week Aminah has been able to pick the picture card for all 7 of her peers when asked to find them. This is outstanding Aminah! We have been working on this since September and to now identify all of her friends is amazing. Well done!

Enjoy the weather and have a lovely weekend – The Nightingales Team

Social Interaction

This week during creative we repeated our world book week activities by bringing back the duck pond and what a success it was. Last week we saw children sharing the space together but this week we saw further developments in this activity by the children looking at each other, vocalising towards each other and all three children placing their hands into the water at the same time. It was fantastic to see these three children playing happily in the water. At the higher level water table we saw standing balance exercises taking place whilst exploring the water and the objects present. In addition we observed children reaching out for the pouring water. We are aiming to do more water play soon and we are going to keep it as a regular activity in the summer term.

During music this week two pupils had some one to one interaction. Sometimes during music the volume of sound can become too loud for some children but we are lucky in Nightingales that we have a lovely space outside our classroom where we can take children to do some quieter engagement.

The Nightingales are continuing their exploration of the stories ’Roaring Rockets’ and ‘How to catch a star’. Both stories give the children the opportunity to stretch their arms to reach for stimuli and then moving on to fine motor skills to grasp and manipulate. We have been seeing lots of anticipation as we count down for the rocket to take off in the story ’roaring rockets’.

The Nightingales enjoyed their wellbeing session this week.

Nightingales stars of the week are Joshua, Tom and Imogen. The three children have engaged and shared an activity together. They all enjoyed each others company. We are so proud of them. Well done!

Nightingales would like to say a big thank you to Ellie who has been with us to gain experience in special needs education. Ellie has been amazing with the children and fitted into team like she had always been here. Ellie has been wonderful by understanding the children’s needs, interacting with the children and sharing her caring nature and smile. Ellie is going to make an amazing teacher (Especially a special needs teacher!) and we wish her all the luck with her PGCE. Thank you for the card and gifts you presented to the children and staff.

Have a lovely weekend – The Nightingales Team.

Welcome to Spring Term 2 & World Book Week 2022

A busy first week back with lots of fantastic engagement taking place. For two weeks Nightingales will have Ellie join our staffing team. Ellie is currently undertaking her PGCE at University College Birmingham and has come to Oakwood to gain experience in Special Needs education. Our Nightingales children have loved Ellie in class this week and have given her a lovely welcome into our classroom.

At the start of the week the Nightingales loved their wellbeing session with massage, foot spa and how to take care of themselves by exploring teeth brushing, hair care ( using a hair brush or a hair dryer) and looking at their reflections in a mirror. The well being session is a favourite with our Nightingales.

We had some dry days so was able to do some walking practice up and down slopes. Accessing outside gives the Nightingales children more area to practice their walking but being outside is great for mental wellbeing.

In the cause and effect session we are seeing the children explore the switches to activate the toys, lights or fans. Lots of smiles when stimuli (toys, lights or fan) was activated. We will continue to work on cause and effect sessions weekly for the children to develop the connection that they are controlling the stimuli.

We had a fantastic time celebrating World Book Week. It was lovely to see some of the children dressed up ,so thank you to our Nightingale parents.

During World Book Week the Nightingales children took part in activities that related to the book ’oh dear’. There was a duck pond to explore, a milking cow station, finding the hidden eggs in the wooden boxes and exploring the animals stuck in the mud with a switch that activated the song ’Old McDonald’. We observed some lovely sharing and social interaction taking place at the duck pond between some of the Nightingales children.

We celebrated a birthday this week! We would like to say a big Happy 21st Birthday to one of our Nightingales teaching assistants – Brodie! The children had birthday cake and we had party songs with the parachute to celebrate.

Well done Nightingales for always working hard. All our Nightingales were stars this week so they all went home with a small gift or sweet treat.

Have a restful weekend – The Nightingales Team

End of Spring Term 1

Lovely end to our first spring term with the valentines disco! The children enjoyed the music and party food.

The Nightingales children have had a busy term engaging in a range activities covering the topics of space, chinese new year and valentines. We have seen some lovely responses in sessions over the term and seeing the children start to anticipate whats happening next is fantastic. It reinforces a consistent routine for our children works and gives the children the opportunity to build awareness and anticipation.

Some lovely moments that were captured :

Have a lovely half term! – The Nightingales Team