At The Ark
Our daily activities and learning are guided by the EYFS framework - click here to view. You may also like to see A Typical Day at The Ark.
When children arrive at the church building they can hang their bags and coats in the lobby area. They can find their animal name label and self register by putting it into the box. The Hub door opens and children are welcomed into The Ark at 9:15am.
The morning starts with free play inside and in the outdoor area. This time may include craft, cooking, sand, water, books, puzzles, toys. For older children there could be name writing and letters and sounds activities.
At 10:30am everyone helps to tidy the hall. We enjoy singing and dancing along to The Wiggle Song, and children have story time in groups. A child is chosen at this point to be Heather's Happy Helper for the morning.
Everyone goes to the toilet and washes hands before eating snack at the tables. Together we count the number of children/boys/girls/adults, using different languages. We discuss the weather, the day of the week and month of the year.
After snack time we will get out bats, balls, obstacle courses and other physical play toys. We may play games as a group, move to music or have different exercise stations. Once we have finished this time we tidy up together and have music, group time and stories.
At 12:10 we sing the Goodbye Song and give out the items in children's baskets (crafts, letters for parents etc). At 12:15 the morning ends and children are dismissed to parents/carers.
On Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays we also run lunch club until 1.15pm. The children enjoy eating together and having some extra play time when finished. We find this is particularly useful in preparing our older children for school, but our younger children very much enjoy it too!
'Fun in the Forest'
We use Wellington College's site twice a week.
The children lead the activities as we walk through the woods, under adult supervision, so every session will be very different. Activities include bug hunting, building woodland crowns, treasure hunts, letter and number identification, and much more.
Through the activities children achieve and develop self confidence and self esteem through hands on learning experiences in different environments, while respecting the strict boundaries staff outline to maintain their safety. Within these boundaries children are encouraged to take risks and explore within an environment that would be different to their norm. We will explore natural habitats, varying stages of growth throughout the year and the wildlife that can be found in different areas of the "Forest".
Children need to wear long trousers and long sleeves to avoid bites and stings. They also need to wear weather appropriate clothing (wellies and waterproofs in wet weather, sunhats in hot weather).
St Brendan's Care Home visits
We regularly visit to St Brendan's Care Home. This interaction between the generations has proven benefits to both the children and the residents and the residents here certainly enjoy our visits.
Children have partnered residents to decorate plant pots and plant flowers, make bookmarks and Christmas tree decorations, and create Easter Bonnets. They sing songs, talk with the residents and share stories.