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Bligh's Lane
Nursery School

Bligh's Lane
BT48 9PJ

028 7126 7603





Easter Newsletter 2014

Bligh’s Lane Nursery School

Easter Newsletter    


Monthly Theme

The theme for this month is ‘Easter’. Please let your child bring something Easter related for the Easter Table.  We will focus on the ‘Oval’ shape and ‘Pattern Awareness’ (Stripes, zigzags and wavy lines) this month through discussion and art activities.               


Songs and Rhymes       

Little Peter Rabbit                 Humpty Dumpty

Little Rabbit Foo Foo                                Chook, Chook, Chook

Five Fat Sausages                                    Five shiny Eggs        

Hickety Pickety                                        3 Sticky Lollipops

5 Little Rabbits                  Ride a Cock Horse

One Potato                                              5 Little Ducks



Early Experiences in Science

The children will be doing some cookery this month – they will be investigating the effect of heat on eggs, and will be making scrambled eggs and egg sandwiches.  When the sandwiches are made they will be learning how to cut them in half and into squares and triangles.  


Mother’s Day          

We hope that every Mammy loved the special ‘Bouquet of Flowers’ made with her child’s hands print for Mother’s Day

Helping your child at home

You have now received your child’s Language Packs and they are very excited because they think it’s their homework! Please take time to write something in the ‘Comment Book’ - found inside your child’s folder - once per week – we really appreciate your views. The children can’t wait to see what ‘games’ they get each week! Here are some more ways that you can help to reinforce our topic:

  • Point out oval shapes or patterns at home or in town - if possible
  • Talk about what you are doing when you are dividing up cakes or sandwiches – use the words ‘divide’, ‘cut in half’ etc.
  • Name the shapes of the sandwiches – or ask your child what shape of sandwich / piece of bread they would like
  • Let your child help you set the table – tell them how many knives and forks you need and talk to them about Left and Right – they are already doing this in school
  • If you have time (maybe at the weekends) encourage your child to dress himself/herself – your child is at a stage where he/she wants to do things for him/herself.  This activity not only develops confidence, independence, and physical skills, but also logical thinking and sequencing skills.
  • Buy some stickers for encouraging good behaviour at home – they mean so much to your child and are a visible sign of your approval





Normally Miss Mc Gilloway dresses up as the Easter Bunny and hides eggs in the playground for the children to have an Easter Egg Hunt. Unfortunately Miss Mc Gilloway has shingles so she will be off school for at least a couple of weeks. If she is not back before Easter, the children will still have an Easter Egg Hunt but without the Easter Bunny!


The children will visit Bananas in the Bowling Alley on Wednesday 16th April  – please make sure that your child is dressed appropriately – LONG SLEEVES MUST BE WORN (to prevent friction burns) AND NO BASEBALL BOOTS PLEASE   - all children should be wearing shoes with Velcro tapes anyway.  This is our last day of school before the Easter holidays.  There will be no dinner on this day and children should be collected at the school at 11.30am. 




The school will be closed from Thursday 17th April – Monday 28th April for the Easter Holidays. 

 The children return to school for the Summer Term on Tuesday 29th April.




‘Thank you’ to all the Parents who have been able to come in and help the children with their breakfast – almost every parent in the school has helped – in some families both mum and dad have done it.  Thank you also to the parents who were able to come and have dinner with us – again some parents come more than once! We will put out a new Rota Sheet for the next few months – please sign up again!



A big ‘Thank you’ to everyone who has made this programme so successful again this year. The children have been brilliant. Take time to look at the photographs in the porch and on our website.



You might remember that Mick Conway, our gardener, has already helped the children plant Autumn Bulbs and Apple trees. He has returned to help with planting in the ‘mini allotments’ at the front of the school. The children have already planted potatoes up there and he will do some more seed planting soon. The Spring bulbs turned out really well in the playground and the children now have a good understanding of the growing process.


We will also plant kidney beans in clear plastic cups so that the children can see the roots and shoots more clearly. Please bring an EMPTY EGG SHELL into school as soon as possible so that we can plant cress seeds in them.




Faye Doherty         1st                Oisin Frazer                  2nd            Darragh Moore        6th


Kian Harkin            11th              Christopher Shields      11th                


Katie Molly Mc Gowan     14th    Darryl Meenan               16th          Shane Meenan           16th


Ava Mc Devitt       19th              Cara Henry                    30th







February 2014

Bligh’s Lane Nursery School



February Newsletter 


Monthly Theme    

The theme for this month is ‘Healthy Me’.  The children will be involved in discussions about themselves, the people they love and people who help us.  We will be talking about our bodies, how they work and the importance of healthy foods and exercise.  If you have anything ‘Love’ related e.g. Heart shapes, please bring them into school. 


              Songs and Rhymes  


    I have ten little fingers

    Polly put the kettle on

    Two little eyes

    When Goldilocks went to the house of the Bears                                 

    One Little Finger

    Open Them, Shut Them

    Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes 

    Fire Engine Rhyme                                          

    If you’re happy and you know it

    I look in the mirror

    Granny’s glasses 

    Rock-a-bye baby

    Miss Polly had a Dolly

    I wiggle my fingers

    Bend your body


Early Mathematical Experiences   

We will be developing awareness of the Heart shape this month and also the concept of Big, Medium and Small.  You can help to reinforce these concepts at home by for example, arranging cereal boxes or tins in order of size and then seeing if your child can do it.  There should also be lots of opportunity to point out ‘heart shapes’ in town this month! The development of other aspects of maths can be seen on the Monthly Planning sheet on the Parents’ Notice Board. 



Early Science  

The children will be experimenting with mixing colours using paint and crepe paper.  Other aspects of science will be explored during discussions about the body and functions of major organs (in simple terms).   





Mid-Year Reports

Mrs Gillen and Mrs O’Doherty are currently working on the children’s Mid-Year Reports. The teachers will try to arrange for some of these meetings to be first thing in the morning (8.45am) or from 1.15pm onwards as soon as reports are ready. The teachers will let you know the dates and you can choose your preferred date and time.



Ambulance and Paramedics Visit

Paramedics from the ambulance service will bring a special ambulance to the school this month. They bring their stretcher and medical equipment into the classrooms, and talk to the children about what happens after an accident. They let them see (and ‘try on’) some of their equipment! Afterwards, the children go outside to see the inside of the ambulance. We are very lucky to be able to arrange these visits, as the Paramedics do this for us on their days off. We also hope to have a visit from the Firefighters from Northland Rd Fire station who will let the children see around the appliance in the car park of the school and of course everyone will get a turn to try out the hose!



Dental Hygienist Visit

As part of our theme we take the children to visit to the Gas Yard to see “Jennifer” our dental hygienist in the surgery. The purpose of this visit is to allay any fears the children may have about going to the dentist as well as to learn about the importance of dental hygiene.  The children will not have their teeth examined.


Focusing On Developing Your Child’s Language Skills

The staff have been working especially hard this year with promoting the development of language skills. During our last parent/teacher meetings lots of parents asked how they can help their child, so we have provided special language ‘activity packs’ which will go inside each child’s Library bag each week. The activities in these packs aim to give you some idea of how you can help to boost your child’s language development at home. A little time spent helping your child with language each week will help him/her to be ready for the demands of Primary school.  You will also find a ‘Parents’ Comments’ book in your child’s folder – please just write a comment each week in the book to let us know how your child responded to the activity.  This will help us select an appropriate activity for the following week.




School Photographer

The school photographer will visit on Friday 14th February.  Every child will have 3 different ‘poses’ taken.  You will receive a small sample of each of the poses and examples of the various sizes available, and you can then decide if you want to buy any of them. Photographs will be taken during class times. There will be no water, paint, dough or anything messy available because of this – so ‘good’ clothes can be worn!   You may also bring other members of the family if you wish – photographs of family members will be taken as soon as the photographer is set up, usually from 8.30am.


Mid-Term Break   

The school will be closed to the children on the following dates:


Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday 17th, 18th and 19th February


Birthdays this Month  


 Caragh Mc Dermott    3rd

 Darragh Villa              9th

 Ethan Mc Intyre       24th



A Life in Your Hands


If children live with criticism,

They learn to condemn.

If children live with hostility,

They learn to fight.

If children live with ridicule,

They learn to be shy.

If children live with shame,

They learn to feel guilty.

If children live with tolerance,

They learn to be patient.

If children live with encouragement,

They learn confidence.

If children live with praise,

They learn to appreciate.

If children live with fairness,

They learn justice.

If children live with security,

They learn to have faith.

If children live with approval,

They learn to like themselves.

If children live with acceptance and friendship,

They learn to find love in the world.



Bligh’s Lane Nursery School


January Newsletter 2014


             Happy New Year!

We hope you all had a peaceful Christmas and the staff would like to wish all the children and their parents a very Happy New Year.  Welcome back to your second term in Bligh’s Lane Nursery School! Thank you for all your support to date – especially to all those who attended the Nativity plays – this meant a lot to the children. 



Nursery School Applications (2014)

If you have a child (or know of a child) due to start Nursery in September 2014 (i.e. 3 years old on or before 2nd July), and you have not already applied for a nursery place, please do so as soon as possible.  The application forms are now available. Children DO NOT have to live in Creggan in order to apply to our school, but they DO have to be resident in the North. The closing date for application forms is Friday 10th January, 2014 at 12 noon.


Primary School Applications (2014)

Parents should have obtained an application form from their preferred Primary School for admission to Year 1 in September 2014. The closing date for Primary school applications forms is also 10th January.



Monthly Theme

The general theme for this month will be ‘Winter’.  As the children will be learning about Arctic animals, if you have any penguins or Polar bears please bring them in for the Interest Tables.  The Key Words that the children will be learning this month are: Igloo; Inuit (formally ‘Eskimo’); Polar Bear; Penguin; Ice Cubes; Ice Berg; Icicle; Freeze; Melt; Frost and Snowflake.





Environmental Science

During this month the children will be learning about Artic Animals, icebergs, the effects of snow and frost, and about the process of melting and freezing.






Songs and Rhymes


Funny Little Snowman                         Pat-a-cake, Pat-a-cake

The Penguin Song                                           Georgie Porgie

5 Little Snowmen Fat                                      The Muffin Man

The Snowball                                                   Incy Wincy Spider (Winter Version)

The Winter Song                                             Three Little Kittens


How you can help to reinforce our Winter Theme


Children learn much, much more if their parents take an interest in what they are learning at school. Why not search the Internet for information or videos about Inuit, igloos, penguins and other Arctic and Antarctic animals etc. and if you find a good site let us know so we can share it with all the children. If you don’t have access to the internet at home you can use the computers in the Creggan Library – they will also have lots of books for you to share with your child



Breakfast Rota

Our Breakfast Rota starts this month and will continue until the end of the year. Each class would need one parent each day to help children with breakfast and clear it away.  The children do most of this themselves now but they LOVE having mammy or daddy in school. The time commitment would be 8.45 -10.00am approximately – but parents can stay as long as they like. Grandparents are welcome too! If you are interested ask your child’s teacher to explain how it all works. Last year’s parents really enjoyed the opportunity to see what goes on in the nursery on a normal day.   


“Come Dine with Me!!!!”

Mammy and /or daddy can now come and join us for dinner. You will be able to see how the dinner routine works and how well the children can sit and eat. You can sit beside your own child and eat with us – just speak to your child’s teacher to arrange a day that suits you. Mrs Gillen’s class start dinner at 11.45am and Mrs O’Doherty’s class start about 10 minutes afterwards. Dinner usually lasts about 30 minutes. We are really looking forward to you all joining us as last years’ parents really enjoyed this opportunity.



Some Reminders:


Dress Warmly!

-Please remember to dress your child for the weather conditions – they need warm coats, hats, scarves and MITTENS (if possible- better and easier than gloves) every day. We only put on the school coats if it’s very wet or snowing. Also, begin to teach your child how to zip up his/her coat – this helps children to get ready for outdoor play more quickly. Also, ‘thank you’ for remembering not send children into school wearing shoes with laces last term!!!



Extended Schools Programme

Mrs Gillen’s Class will stay for this week only since they didn’t get two weeks before Christmas. Mrs O’ Doherty’s class will stay for their next two-week block beginning Monday 13th. Please read the Poster on the porch door each week so that you know which class is staying late, and keep the attached timetable in a safe place.



Mobile Phone Numbers

All parents should have received their class teacher’s mobile number. If you need to contact the school always ring the landline first. Mrs Gillen and Mrs O’ Doherty will have their school mobile phones with them at all times so you can contact us if you need to in the evenings or at weekends. PLEASE make sure that you let us know if you change your mobile number:

Mrs Gillen’s number is: 07564024879                                                           

Mrs O’ Doherty’s number is: 07564024308




St. Vincent de Paul

Thank you all so much for the gifts you brought for the St. Vincent de Paul Appeal, you were exceptionally generous this year, and we hope you enjoyed the little ceremony at the chapel.




Birthdays This Month      


Callum Barras      5th                                                      Chloe Marley       14th


Cathán Clifford      21st                                                                                  







Bligh’s Lane Nursery School


Christmas Newsletter 2013



The Theme for this month is Christmas.  There will be a Christmas table in each classroom, so please help your child to bring something ‘Christmas’ related into school. Talk to your child about the Nativity story and help them to learn the songs that you know – especially the first verse of Away in a Manger, as it is very difficult for young children.





Nativity songs

Christmas Songs

*  Here we go up to Bethlehem                         

*  Jingle Bells              

*  I was there on the night when Jesus came

*  When Santa got stuck up the Chimney

*  Away in a manger                                                      

*  Santa Claus is coming to town

*  Follow the Star                                                            

*  Mrs Gillen’s Silly Santa Song         

*  Angel Gabriel’s Song

*  Twinkle, Twinkle Christmas Star

*  Shepherds’ Song



*  Father Christmas




The children perform a very simple Nativity Play each year.  Class performances will be on the following 



*           THURSDAY 12th  DECEMBER    9.30 am           Mrs Gillen’s Class


*           FRIDAY 13th  DECEMBER                      9.30 am           Mrs O’ Doherty’s Class


The Children will get opportunities to try out the different Nativity parts during the weeks leading up to Christmas, and we need parents to understand that every part in the play is important because every child is important.  Some children will have a few words to say and it is important to remember that some children are comfortable talking in front of others and some are not – we do not want to upset any child so each child must be happy with their own part. We hold the play early in the morning before the children become tired and it usually lasts about 15 or 20 minutes at most. 

Parents, grandparents, aunties, uncles etc. are very welcome to attend, but we do ask that other children

are not brought to the Nativity plays as this has proved to be very distracting for our small children in the past.  It is essential that the children are at school every day now unless they are very sick, as we will be learning the Nativity songs and talking about the play.  Cameras are allowed since all parents have signed their consent for photographs/videos to be taken of the Nativity Plays.


On the morning of your child’s Play please dress your child as below:

*             Girls should wear white vests, pants and tights (or socks)

*             Boys should wear any type of dark-coloured top and bottoms


We have all the costumes required for each child.



This is a lady who has visited the school after Halloween. She uses puppets to tell a familiar story and it is all done through mime and music. The children love it. She will be here on Tuesday 3rd  December and the story is ’Red Riding




Mrs Gillen’s Class will visit Creggan Library on Tuesday 10th December for some Christmas stories and songs

Mrs O’Doherty’s Class will go on Wednesday 11th .




The Primary One children and their teachers from St John’s Primary School will be invited to attend the dress rehearsals of the Nativity Plays if this doesn’t clash with their own performances. It will be lovely for us to see last year’s children again and it will be good for our children to have an ‘audience’ before the ‘big day’!


Santa Claus will visit the school on Wednesday18th December during class times and each child will receive a gift.   Both classes sit together in the hall for Santa’s visit and the children go up to see him one by one (If you think your child will be afraid of Santa, let us know so that we can seat him/her further away – if a child doesn’t want to go up to Santa, he hands the child his/her present from a safe distance!). We will take a photograph of every child with Santa. This is the last day of school before Christmas, we will have our Christmas party before Santa arrives, and all the children should be collected at 11.15am. Parents who pay for dinners should only pay for Monday and Tuesday.



The children will have ‘Christmas Dinner’ in school with all the trimmings on Friday 13th December.






During the Christmas season we help the children to understand the importance of giving rather than receiving.  There has been a tradition in the school each year that the parents bring items of groceries or toiletries (for hampers), NEW toys, books, clothes etc. to donate to needy families on behalf of the families in the school.  Parents have been very generous in the past and we know that this year will be no exception.  Bring what you can into school as soon as you can and before Friday 13th December. We will take what has been collected to St Mary’s Chapel on TUESDAY 17th December.  The staff will walk up to the Chapel with the children. A priest from the parish and a representative from the St Vincent De Paul Society welcome the children, each child then leaves a small ‘gift’ (i.e. something that you have brought in) in front of the crib and we all sing our Nativity songs.  Parents / grandparents are welcome to attend this little ceremony, which will begin at 1.00pm, and then all children should be collected from the Chapel at 1.15pm.

The staff would like to thank parents in advance for their generosity on behalf of the St Vincent de Paul Society, who will ensure that your donations are distributed to those in need this Christmas.




Every Christmas the parents in this school bring presents for the staff – and of course this is very much appreciated. We feel that it is too much to expect parents to buy presents for staff.  You all have your own family to buy for which is much more important. We would be delighted if every child brought the staff a Christmas card – this would mean a lot.  Thank you.




We have had a very positive response with regard to this programme from children and parents. The Extended Schools programme will run on Monday 16th December, but NOT on the Tuesday or Wednesday that week.


You will receive a new Extended Day Timetable after Christmas and remember, there will always be a poster on the door on the way out of the school that will tell you which class stays for Extended Schools each week.



The school will be closed to the children on Thursday19th December and we will see you all again on Monday 6th January 2014.



The staff would like to thank all our parents for their support to date and to wish you all very Merry Christmas!




If you have (or know of) a child due to start Nursery in September 2014 i.e. 3 years old on or before 2nd July, please inform a member of staff or telephone 71267603. Parents should also contact their preferred Primary School in order to obtain an application form for Primary One – forms are available NOW!.





    Shéa Glenn                  5th                                   Canice Mc Daid    10th


   Megan Meenan           12th                                Corey MC Clafferty         17th


   Shane Kelly                   30th










BANYAN THEATRE: Tuesday 3rd   



CREGGAN LIBRARY: Mrs Gillen’s Class: Tuesday 10th

CREGGAN LIBRARY: Mrs O’Doherty’s Class: Wednesday: 11th



Mrs Gillen’s Class NATIVITY PLAY: Thursday 12th


Mrs O’Doherty’s Class NATIVITY PLAY: Friday 13th







ST MARY’S CHAPEL: Tuesday 17th 












Monthly Newsletters

Bligh’s Lane Nursery School


November Newsletter



The theme for this month is ‘Autumn’.  Please let your child bring in anything that is Autumn related e.g., leaves, berries, chestnuts bare branches etc.



- Autumn Leaves are falling down           - One, Two, Buckle my Shoe

- I’m a Little Hedgehog                            - Mr Bear, Mr Bear

- Five Little Leaves                                   - Little Owl

- Goldilocks Rhyme                                                   


You will find the songs and rhymes sheet inside your child’s Library bag – please practice them every day / night – it will make such as difference to the development of your child’s reading skills if you do this at home.



Thank you all for making such an effort to dress the children for the party and thank you to the parents who brought some treats in for the children to share – we all had a lovely day and the children were excellent!



Our theme is all about Autumn this month. We will encourage the children to notice changes to the trees and they will also learn about the environments of Owls, Hedgehogs and Squirrels. Children learn so much from their environment so be sure to talk to them about the trees and leaves on your way to school


As you will have already noticed on the ‘monthly planner’ on the Parents’ Notice Board, we will focus on ‘leaf’ and ‘circle’ shapes this month.  The children will gather and sort leaves according to shape and size.  You should see this reflected in art activities that are prepared for the children.


The Extended School and Breakfast club programmes will begin on Monday 11th November. Working parents can bring their child to school any time after 8.15am and can stay for breakfast themselves if they want to. If you are not a working parent but would like your child to come to the Breakfast club, speak to your child’s teacher as there may be a place available. There are 13 places in each class. You have all been given timetables for the Extended Day so please keep them handy. Mrs Aislinn Hodgett and Mrs Tara Mc Kenna will run the breakfast club and Mrs Hodgett and Mrs Teresa Mc Guinness will run the Extended day. Remember, the extended hours are offered three times per week, are flexible and children can be collected any time before 2.30p.m.  If you are also collecting a child from St John’s Primary School, please come for your Nursery child first. The Extended day will be ‘action-packed’ so it is really important that your child is in bed early so he/she is well rested for the next school day.



If you pay for dinners please remember to bring the correct amount in a envelope with your child’s name written on it.



It was lovely to get a chance to talk to all our parents and to get such positive comments from you all. I hope you found this positive experience also, and remember you can talk to us at any time if you have any worries or concerns.



Our first visit will be to St Columb’s Park for an Autumn Walk  on Thursday 7th November. Normal class times will apply.   There is always great excitement about going in the bus! The children will explore the park and then have a chance to play on the swings and slides.  We will be back in time for dinner – tired and hungry!



As the teachers have explained at the Parent/Teacher meetings, the children will now be able to enjoy outdoor play no matter what the weather is like!  Outdoor play is essential for a child’s development and part of the Nursery Curriculum. The children are learning to put on the all-in-one coats but please remember – SHOES WITH VELCRO TAPES OR BOOTS for school from now on.



We have a lovely treat for the children on 8th November. A lady called Karen will come an present ‘Goldilocks and the Three Bears’ – the children really enjoy this every year.





Aoife Officer  13th        Edward Blee   24th          Zach Clifford    25th


Sophie Mc Laughlin-Gallagher   25th               Leah Tracey  27th


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