Newsletter-November 2018

Newsletter- November 2018

It is with sadness that we are saying goodbye to Helen this month. Helen has been with us for 25 years covering various essential roles including practitioner, manager and SENCo. Unfortunately Helen sustained a severe back injury in February and has had a very long slow recovery, sadly she feels unable to return to work and has therefore had to say farewell.

We are all very sad to see her go, she was a valued member of staff with a wealth of knowledge, we would like to wish her all the best.

If you would like to contribute towards a leaving gift for Helen please speak to a member of the committee.


Childrens interests

To keep us up to date with your child’s likes/dislikes and interests we require parents to update this information on tapestry each term. Please take the time to do this over the next couple of weeks as this enables us to tailor your child’s learning using their interests to make it as enjoyable as possible for them. If you need any help please do not hesitate to ask a member of staff.

Inset days

We have made a change to our planned inset days and will no longer have an inset day on Monday 1st July. Our inset days are now as follows

Tuesday 18th December 2018

Friday 5th July 2019

Monday 22 July 2019

Forest School

I am delighted to tell you that after half term we will be introducing a ‘Forest School’ session on Friday afternoons. This will begin as soon as we return after the half term on Friday 9th November. We will be joining a group of the Year One children from the Infants school who are already taking part in this session.

During the session the children will take part in a variety of activities and will also be provided with a snack and a drink warmed on the camping stove.

Forest school is an opportunity for your child to experience nature and the outdoor environment in a safe, secure and hands on way. Research suggests that children learn best from first hand experiences. Exploring, playing and problem solving within the forest school aims to encourage learning using a range of activities (both designed by the leader and instigated by the children themselves). Building a sense of independence, high self-esteem and team work are important parts of forest school and we are sure the children will enjoy and learn from these experiences.


Join us

May we remind all parents/careers that you are welcome to join us for the first 15 minutes of every session to experience a taste of pre-school life with your child. During this time you are welcome to play alongside your child, observe them from a distance, or discuss any concerns you may have with your child’s key worker.

We would like to remind parents of the following points in our Visitors policy (the full version is available on our website). These procedures are in place to protect your children so please respect them.


General Duty of Care 

Crich Pre-School is responsible for the safety and security of all visitors and children in its care. When receiving visitors we aim to protect the security and safety of children and adults and to minimise any disruption.

Staff are to remain aware of the potential dangers posed by an unregulated visitor and it is vital that they adhere to the rules and procedures detailed below at all times.

Strict control and management of visiting personnel is essential not only to protect them but also to protect pre-school staff and the children in their care.


·         Visitors must not enter unauthorised areas i.e. children’s toilets.

·         No visitor will be left alone with the children at any time.

·         The pre-school has the right to refuse entry, or to ask a visitor to leave the setting.

·         All mobile phones must be switched off

·         Cameras are not permitted

Autumn Term Newsletter

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Autumn Newsletter- October 2018

Termly Themes

Our themes for this term are Autumn and Celebrations. We have been collecting and looking at vegetables including pumpkins, as well as leaves, conkers, and acorns. After half term we will be starting to think about celebrations as we lead up to Christmas.

New Faces

From 5th  November our new Teaching and Learning Manager, Kay, will be with us working alongside Lisa, our Business Manager, they are joint managers and will drive the pre-school forward together.

Kay will be helping us to develop new and exciting ways of developing through play. She will be working directly with the children Wednesdays Thursdays and Fridays, and Lisa will continue to work with the children Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Kennedy, who stepped in to cover on a temporary basis, will leave us at half term but you may still see her from time to time as she will step in to cover if required.

We also have a few changes within the Board of Trustees, you will be able to meet the new Trustees at the AGM. A huge thankyou to all the Trustees, without whom the preschool could not run, they do a fantastic job behind the scenes to keep us up to date and well resourced.

Diary Dates

Crich Preschool AGM : the AGM for the preschool Board of Trustees will take place on Friday 19th October in the Quiet Room from 3.15 to 3.45. We have attached the invitation form for you to complete if you are attending.

The preschool will have a stall at the Autumn Fair on Saturday 20th October at the Glebe Centre.

The photographer is booked for Thursday 15th November 2.00-5.30pm. If you are able to attend early please do so, it can be very busy after 3.30pm and waiting times will be longer.

Our annual Christmas Shopping Event will take place on Saturday 24th November. This is a great opportunity to pick up interesting and unique gifts without having to brave the crowds in shopping centres. It is also one of our biggest fund raisers so please come along and support us.

INSET Day : The preschool will be shut on Tuesday 18th December. This is due to the room not being available to us on that day, we apologise for any inconvenience caused.

Suitable clothing

Can we remind you that the children go out every day to play in the outside play area (or sometimes over to the park or for a walk around the village). Please make sure that they have a coat as well as a jumper/hoodie as it can be cold on the playground.

We would also like to remind you that all clothing such as gloves etc should be named and it would help us if you could put hats/scarves/gloves etc into your child’s coat hood when you hang them up, as this helps us speed up getting everyone ready to go outside. The children are getting much quicker at putting their own coats on with only a little help from us, thank you.

Can we also remind you that drink bottles, which the children can access all day, should only contain water, not squash or fruit juices.

And finally….

Last term we took part in the annual well dressing tradition and were delighted when we were approached by the well dressing committee who have donated some of the proceeds to Crich Preschool. A big thank you to all those who helped make our contribution.

Please do not hesitate to get in touch if you have anything you want to discuss with a member of the team

Kind Regards

Kennedy, Lisa, Tracie, Sadie, Kim and Joyce



Notice is hereby given that an Annual General Meeting for Crich Pre-School will be held in the Quiet Room at the Glebe Field Centre, Glebe Field Close, Crich, Matlock, DE4 5EU on Friday19th October 2018 at 3:15pm till 3:45pm. Please join us for as much of the meeting as you are able.


  • Treasurer update
  • Sign off 2017/2018 accounts
  • Chair overview of the year
  • AOB

Yours sincerely

J. Kirk

Chair of Trustees for Crich Pre-School

Confirmation of attendance

I WILL attend the annual general meeting for Crich Pre-School on Friday 19th October 2018 at 3.15pm held at the Glebe Field Centre.

Signed:………………………………..             Print Name: …………………………………..


Summer Fundraising

We would like to thank everyone who has supported us in our recent fundraising efforts. The children have really enjoyed the new indoor climbing frame we have been raising funds for over the past year or so. We knew it would be a big hit and the children have certainly taken to it!

As a charity, our fundraising activities are continuous in order to keep costs as low as possible for our families, while renewing resources and enhancing learning experiences for the children. We’d like to thank everyone who supported our cake stall and raffle in June by baking, buying, manning the stall or donating prizes. We raised just under £350 as a result of these events. A big thank you also goes to two of our parents, Katie and Emily, who raised £300 running the monument race to raise funds for us. This, along with almost £100 raised from the fete stall, will be put towards purchasing new natural and open ended materials that will free the children to develop their creativity and imaginations further.



Dear Parents

I write to inform you that I will be leaving Crich Pre-school at the end of this term to return to teaching within a school environment. Making this decision has been extremely difficult as I have thoroughly enjoyed working at Crich Pre-school. It has been a privilege to be part of such a dedicated team of staff and to work with such delightful children. I will miss everyone dearly.

I would like to take this opportunity to wish Crich Pre-school every success for the future and to thank you, the parents, for all of the support you give to the pre-school.

The trustees will be appointing a new teaching and learning manager in due course. In the meantime, if you have any questions or concerns, please speak to a member of staff.

Yours sincerely

Anne-Marie Smith

End of Term

16th July 2018

Dear Parents / Careers

I would like to remind you all that we are closed on Thursday 19th July as the pre-school room is being used as a polling station, and we have an inset day on Friday 20th July, therefor our last day is Wednesday 18th July.

Our first day back in September is Tuesday 4th (Monday 3rd is an inset day).

We will be holding a picnic on the park in Crich to say goodbye to the children who will be leaving us at the end of term on Wednesday 18th July from 12:30. All children and their families are welcome to attend. If your child usually attends all day on a Wednesday but you would like to join us for the picnic, we ask that you collect your child at 12:15 to take them to the park as you will be responsible for your own child/children. Pre-school staff will take responsibility for the children who stay all day and do not have any family members attending. These children will wear high visibility vests to make sure they are easily identifiable. Please bring your own picnics. The pre-school children will also make some end of year treats to share.

We would like to wish all our leavers the very best, they will all be missed but we are sure they will continue to thrive and exceed expectations.

We hope you all enjoy the holidays and we look forward to hearing about all your exciting adventures when you return

Kind Regards

The Pre-School Team

Newsletter-June 2018


Termly Themes

Our themes for this half term are Summer and Moving on. As our caterpillars developed somewhat quicker than expected and emerged as butterflies over half term, we need to get some more so that the children can enjoy watching them emerge from their cocoons, and so we will also continue with Growing and Minibeasts.

Diary Dates

Cake Stall:

We are holding a cake stall outside Crich Butchers on Saturday 16th June from 9 am. If you are able to support this event, by baking a cake and / or helping to run the stall, please add your name to the appropriate sheets at pre-school (if you haven’t already done so). Our raffle will be drawn at the end of the cake stall morning, so if you haven’t bought any tickets yet but would like to do so, please speak to a member of staff or complete the slip at the end of this letter and return in a sealed envelope with the appropriate money. All funds raised will go towards purchasing new resources to improve the play opportunities at pre-school – we have a very long wish list!



·         Monday 2nd July 2018

·         Friday 20th July 2018

Polling Day:

We have recently been informed that the pre-school room will be used for polling for the Neighbourhood Plan Referendum on Thursday 19th July 2018 and therefore pre-school will be closed to children on this day. Although this closure is outside of our control, we apologise for any inconvenience caused.

Sports Day:

The morning of Tuesday 10th July 2018 at Crich Junior School. Details to follow in due course.


International Mud Day:

Friday 29th June is International Mud Day – a chance to join settings across the world to celebrate immersion in outdoor play and encouraging a deep physical connection to the natural world. We will be making the most of our mud kitchen on this day, so please ensure your child/children come to pre-school in old clothes that you don’t mind getting very dirty.

Climbing Frame

Last week the children were excited and delighted by the arrival of our new indoor climbing frame (and the boxes it came in are providing some fantastic play opportunities too!). This will help the children to develop their large motor skills whilst playing indoors but also provides plenty of other opportunities for learning across the curriculum. At the moment the children are just happy to climb and slide but we are sure it won’t be long until the climbing frame becomes a pirate ship, a castle, a tree house  … and whatever else the children can imagine. Thank you to all of the parents who have helped to organise the fundraising events that have made the purchase of this expensive equipment possible and to the parents who have supported such events too. We really do appreciate your efforts.

Suitable Clothing for All Weather Conditions  

We go outside to play every session and therefore it is essential that children come to pre-school with appropriate clothing and footwear for the weather conditions forecast. We do have waterproof puddle suits for when we go out and about in the local area but we do not have a supply of wellington boots. If the weather is forecast to be sunny, please send your child to pre-school with a named sun hat and apply sun cream before arriving at pre-school. There are a number of all day sun creams available which eliminate the need to reapply sun cream during the pre-school day. However, if your child needs sun cream reapplying, please put your child’s name on it, put it in their bag and inform a member of staff. We already have sunglasses for all of the children.

Fruit and Vegetable Bowl     

We are committed to promoting healthy eating at pre-school and would like to encourage the children to eat more fresh fruit and vegetables whilst also offering more choice at snack times. We have previously introduced a pre-school fruit and vegetable bowl which is left in the quite room each morning and we invite parents to contribute whenever they are able, be this each week or once a term. All we ask is that the fruits/vegetables can be eaten raw. There is no obligation but all contributions are gratefully received. However, we have received very few contributions lately and some parents have asked if they could pay a small amount per session instead to cover the cost of pre-school purchasing sufficient fruit and vegetables, adding that this will also ensure variety and freshness. We would therefore like to find out what the majority of our parents would prefer to do and would be most grateful if you could complete and return the slip below.

School Readiness 

Last year Derbyshire County Council produced a leaflet to help parents understand what children should be able to do by the time they leave pre-school in readiness for starting school. We feel this information is important for all parents, not just those with a child starting school this September, and have therefore attached a copy of this leaflet for your information. You can help your child by practising these skills at home. If you would like further information, please ask a member of staff.

If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to pop in to see us.

Kind regards

Anne-Marie, Lisa, Tracie, Sadie, Joyce and Kim

Late payment of fees

Please can we remind all parents and carers that late payment of fees will result in extra charges being added. Our policy in this regard appears at the bottom of all our invoices and is as follows:

Late payment fees will be added to your invoice after 14 days. If you are experiencing financial difficulties please talk to one of the pre-school staff as you may pay weekly in advance if you prefer, or pay two instalments of equal amounts, the second to be received no later than 14 days from the end of half term.

Many thanks for your cooperation.

Newsletter- April 2018


It is lovely to be back at pre-school and working with the children again. It is amazing to see how much progress they have all made during my absence!  We have several new children starting this term and we would like to take this opportunity to extend a warm welcome to them and their families.

This term Lisa and I are trialling a new management structure. I am the ‘Setting Manager’ responsible for teaching and learning and Lisa is ‘Business Manager’ responsible for administration. We are confident that this arrangement will allow us both more time to focus on our areas of expertise and will therefore benefit the children.

Sadly, Helen is still off sick and, due to the seriousness of her injury, is likely to be off for a significant period of time. I am sure you will join us in wishing her a speedy recovery.

As a result of Helen’s absence, we welcome Kim Oliver to the pre-school team as a member of relief staff. We are fortunate to have a very dedicated staff. However, last term was very difficult in terms of staff absences and so the trustees and I would like to thank the staff for all of the hard work they put in to keep the pre-school running. Special thanks must also be given to two of our parents, Zoe Hirst and Kim Oliver, who volunteered when necessary to ensure we adhered to the required adult to child ratios.

Termly Themes

Our themes for this half term are Spring, Growing and Minibeasts.

St George’s Day  


Next Monday (23rd April) is St George’s Day. To celebrate this event we would like the children who usually attend on a Monday to come to pre-school dressed as knights, princesses, dragons or in red and white clothing on this day. We will be sharing the story of George and the Dragon, setting up a role-play castle and cave to encourage the children to re-tell the story, as well as making a patriotic snack and offering a variety of themed craft activities. The rest will be up to the children – who knows where we will go?

Sports Leaders     

We will be welcoming visits from some of the children from Crich Junior School, the Sports Leaders, who will be leading our children in a variety of sports activities. It is lovely for us staff to see how wonderful the older children are with the pre-school children and how these sessions benefit all of the children involved.  However, we would like parents to have the opportunity to see this as well. Therefore, we also hope to organise the second pre-school sports day at Crich Junior School. We are just trying to finalise a convenient date with the junior school and will advise you of this as soon as possible. The sports day was a huge success last year, with many pre-school parents commenting on how impressed they were with the junior school children.

Water Bottles

Most children continue to come to pre-school with water in their water bottles and we thank you for support with this. However, we have noticed that some parents have reverted back to sending in squash/juice. Drinking enough water is important for maintaining brain function and it is also better for teeth as drinking squash/juice can lead to tooth decay. It is important to get our children into good habits now, as they will only have access to water during class time when they start school. Also, in the past we have experienced problems with some of our youngest children drinking from other children’s bottles because they liked another child’s juice better than what was in their own bottle. Everyone having water in their bottle eliminates this problem (sending a separate drink of juice in your child’s lunchbox is fine). The children have a choice of milk or water at snack time and all of the children currently attending pre-school happily choose (and drink) one of these options. Please be assured that we will continue to make sure that all children have a drink during a session. However, if you have any concerns, please come and talk to a member of staff.

Sun Safety


Hopefully the sun will begin to shine this term! We will be teaching the children about ‘The 5 S’s’ -Slip, Slap, Slop, Sunglasses and Shade (Slip on a t-shirt, Slap on a hat, Slop on the sun cream, wear Sunglasses and stay in the Shade during the hottest part of the day). Please can you send your child to pre-school with a named sun hat and apply sun cream before arriving at pre-school. There are a number of all day sun creams available which eliminate the need to reapply sun cream during the pre-school day. However, if your child needs sun cream reapplying, please put your child’s name on it, put it in their bag and inform a member of staff. We already have sunglasses for all of the children.

If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to pop in to see us.

Kind regards


Spring Fundraising

Our fundraising activities have continued this term, with the first of our cake stalls outside the butchers being held just before Mother’s Day and an Easter Raffle, both of which were very successful. The children painted pots for the plants in our Mother’s Day gift bags and we were very grateful for the kind donations of wonderful cakes from parents, grandparents and friends for the stall. Special thanks to Mrs Mottershead for baking so very much for us; her scones freshly baked on the morning went down especially well! Thanks also to volunteers who gave their time to run the stall for the morning as well as those of you who came along to purchase some tasty treats. We raised over £200.

The Easter raffle raised £118 and we were very grateful for the kind donations from local businesses including Jeera, The Tramway Museum, Matlock Farm Park, Scotland nurseries, White Post Farm, Flowers by Marcus in Alfreton as well as Derby County FC and individual donations from parents and supporters. All money raised will, as always, be reinvested to enhance the experiences of our children. Thanks to all who bought tickets, a list of winners can be seen below.

Our next fundraisers will be a Cake Stall and raffle on 16th June, the day before Father’s Day. There are some fantastic prizes that Dad’s will love on offer including Paintballing, Escape Rooms tickets, £20 cash donated by Digicharge and much more. We’ll also have a stall at the fete in July as always, which we’re really looking forward to. As well as supporting our events, you can also support Crich Pre-School every time you shop online without it costing you a penny. Please visit to register and start raising funds. We hope you will continue to support us in all our fundraising.

Newsletter March 2018

Newsletter- March 2018

Outside play

In recent years there has been a cultural shift in our society that has reduced the access and use of outdoors for many young children. Contributory factors include increased fear amongst adults in relation to children’s safety and technological advances leading to an overwhelming prominence of more sedentary indoor activities, such as television, video and computer games.

Very young children learn predominately through their sensory and physical experiences which promote brain development, so we want to support the development of healthy and active lifestyles by offering children opportunities for physical activity, freedom and movement, and promoting a sense of well-being. Learning outside the classroom gives children an appreciation of nature and the environment, a chance to be active and healthy and develop their physical capabilities, so this term we have been out and about around the village with the children and have visited the Junior Schools nature garden, St Mary’s Church, the park and have taken the children to the shop to choose and purchase their snack.

Each time we have been out the children have worn their high visibility jackets and have walked holding onto our safety rope, they have listened and followed instruction remarkably well especially regarding road safety. We plan on continuing these trips with further visits to the park, a walk across the fields and a visit to the Wesleyan Chapel.

Tapestry & Feedback books

We have been using ‘Tapestry’ online learning journal for a year now and it has been a valuable tool, recording, analysing and sharing every childs journey with us.

On Tapestry you will find, photos, videos, observations and reports relating to your child. You can see what they have been up to and follow their development.

We have now opened the ‘All about me’ page to enable parents/carers to update information about their child. We would appreciate it if you could update this at the start of each term (September, January & April) so we always have up to date interests and likes/dislikes enabling us to plan appropriately for your child. We will of course give you a reminder each term.

We are now also using ‘Care Diary’ on Tapestry where we can let you know about toileting, morning or afternoon naps and incidents/accidents. Most importantly it has a communication tool which allows two way communication and works like messenger/texting. We have just started to use this so please look out for any notifications and feel free to message us regarding your child.

If anyone would like any help accessing Tapestry, or guidance on how to use it, please do not hesitate to ask.

Since we have been using Tapestry use of the feedback books has reduced. With the introduction of the ‘Care Diary’ on Tapestry giving us an online communication tool we do intend to stop using the feedback books by September if the ‘Care Diary’ communication is a success. We will continue to monitor the feedback books for those parents/carers that would prefer to keep this form of communication until September.

Healthy eating

We recognise the need to encourage healthy eating from an early age, as this will help children to reach their full potential in terms of growth and development.

We provide opportunities and experiences to develop children’s knowledge and understanding of healthy eating concepts and give the children well balanced and nutritious snacks.

Crich pre-school regards snack and meal times as an important part of the settings session. Eating represents a social time for the children and adults and this helps children to learn about healthy eating. They are encouraged to develop good eating skills and table manners and will be given plenty of time to eat.

We encourage parents to provide sandwiches with a healthy filling and a fruit and milk based dessert such as yoghurt or fromage frais. We provide water for the children although you may wish to put in a juice carton. Please do not include any fizzy drinks. We discourage packed lunches that consist largely of crisps, processed foods, sweet drinks and sweet products such as cakes or biscuits and we reserve the right to return this food to the parent as a last resort.

We would also like to take this opportunity to remind you that Crich Pre-School has a strict no nuts policy which must be adhered to.

Summer term sessions

We are currently planning for the summer term, if you would like to increase/decrease your childs sessions please let us know before the Easter break.


Did you know that you can support Crich Pre-School by shopping online?

Every time you shop via ‘easyfundraising’ at one of 3300 retailers including John Lewis, Aviva, Sainsburys and, a donation will be made to our Pre-School, and it wont cost you a penny extra. Go to to sign up for free and get shopping.

We appreciate all your help with fundraising, everything from baking a cake, helping on the cake stall, buying raffle tickets and signing up to Crich Pre-Schools easy fundraising.

Over £200 was made on the cake stall last weekend and with this money we will be purchasing a couple of activity mats, some plants and bulbs for the outside play area, and a bluetooth speaker so thank you for all your support.

Thank you

Finally we would like to thank all parents and carers for your support and understanding through what has been a difficult term for us in terms of staff shortages and snow days.

We appreciate your continued support.