As published in Februarys issue of the Parish Magazine

It might be cold outside, but it has been a warm welcome back to all of our children as we start a new year and new term here at Stepping Stones. The cold weather has provided an abundance of learning and play opportunities. Ice has been explored with all our senses, habitats built for polar animals and homes for Inuits and Eskimos. Snowflakes provided an opportunity to explore symmetry, shape and what it is to be unique.

We’ve enjoyed exploring the food chain, planting seeds in the garden, delivering fruit and vegetables to and making our own grocery store, written shopping lists and then delivered orders to our garden play house for eager waiting customers, where they’ve been transformed into delicious healthy meals served by the garden café.

The bulbs we planted last year are now announcing their arrival across our garden, stems have been counted and measured, flowers examined and smelt; and provided inspiration for beautiful artwork painted and created inside and out. The herbs and sensory plants have continued to provide welcome materials for our play adventures; and a sensory record we’ve been observing of the changing season and weather as we progress towards spring.

Big garden bird watch prompted bird hides to be created, binoculars made and spotting sheets drawn. Listening skills were put to the test as we enjoyed recording the noises we could hear around us, feathered visitors enticed by our bird feeders to perch in the trees above us, to be spotted, counted and identified.

The New Year, Lunar New Year, Burns Night and Winter Watch have given us an abundance of events to share, discuss and experience through our play and friendships. It's been a busy start to the new year exploring the world around us, loving the adventures, laughing with our friends and so much learning. We’re excited to continue our play this term and hopefully visit our friends at Hill Close Gardens before we break for half term.

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