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Easter Celebrations at Children 1st

Egg-Cellent Easter Bonnets Parades

Easter was a time of wonder, awe and creativity as the magic of the celebration unfolded at Children 1st nurseries.

As our photo roundup shows, the children were delighted to show off the Easter bonnets they had made at home. As the children paraded in their bonnets, the staff were very impressed with the high standards of the Easter creations. Clearly plenty of gluing, painting and decorating had taken place to produce the colourful bonnets!

Thank-you to everyone who helped to make our Easter parades so egg-citing!





Children 1st Easter Bonnet Slideshow

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Solar Eclipse at Children 1st

Cosmic Excitement at Children 1st

Youngsters from two of our nurseries took to the outdoors last week to witness the rare astronomical phenomenon of the moon coming between the Earth and the Sun.

The last time there was a solar eclipse was in 1999.  This year the eclipse started at 8.27 a.m. the event was over by 10.42 a.m. but it gave children and staff plenty to talk about and learn about for the rest of the day.


Our budding young astronauts and scientists were fascinated by how dark and cold it became so quickly. All the children were taught about the dangers of looking directly at a solar eclipse.

The children at Children 1st at Acorns used handmade viewers to help them see the shape of the moon and the sun and stayed extra safe by keeping their backs to the sun.

Meanwhile over at Children 1st @ Grantham the children used paper plates with pinholes in them to watch this historic occasion. Even the kitchen colander made a good viewing tool!

With plenty of stories and songs our solar eclipse day was an amazing day.

Solar Eclipse Slide Show

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Create and Bake at Children 1st @ Acorns

Create and Bake at Children 1st @ Acorns Upper Tean

Staff at Children 1st @ Acorns Upper Tean were delighted to welcome the mummies of children from Tiggywinkles and Jeremy Fishers to the nursery for a day of creative and baking activities in celebration of Mother’s Day recently.

The children absolutely loved having their mums join them for this creative session. It was also a good opportunity for the children to show their mums the kind of things they like to play with the most at nursery.

Mums were also treated to a grand tour of our wonderful early years’ space. The children made very good guides for this important job! It was lovely to watch them taking on this responsibility.

Thank-you to everyone who joined us for ‘Create and Bake.’



Children 1st @ Acorns Upper Tean Create and Bake Slideshow

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World Book Day at Children 1st

A Big, Happy, Booky Celebration of Reading!

World Book Day took place on Thursday 5th March and children across all our nurseries marked the occasion with fun filled day of activities, designed to create a love of reading from an early age.

Children across many nurseries were invited to attend nursery dressed as their favourite literary character. Others focussed purely on activities based around one particular book or author. At Children 1st @ Shepshed they learnt lots about the work of Julia Donaldson.

Whilst a love of reading can be started at an early age within nursery, children benefit the most when reading is seen as a family activity, one which takes place regularly within the home. As such, children were invited to bring in their favourite book which they could then read during Story Time in nursery.

With two great new books for the under- fives published specially for this year’s World Book Day, plus a host of favourite books to share and lots of traditional nursery rhymes, songs and lullabies to sing along to, it is little wonder that so many of the children already show a love of reading and books!

Two books were particularly popular during the day. Children had great fun helping Elmer, the patchwork elephant find his missing friends to join the elephant parade in David McKee’s new book.

Children  then went back in time to the prehistoric ages and kept their eyes sharp when they searched the latest in the Dinosaur series, Danny and the Dinosaur, by Dougie Poynter and Tom Fletcher (both former members of McFly and McBusted) to find dinosaurs, planets and that all important poop! Well, may seem gross to us adults but hilarious for young children.

Children enjoying reading is music to the ears of Children 1st founder Margaret Mason. “With so many good books available it’s easy for parents and educators to help children develop a love of reading. It doesn’t have to be expensive. Book shops often have good offers, libraries offer a wealth of books to loan for free and swapping books with family and friends is a great way of sharing a hugely valuable learning resource.”

Margaret’s view is that sharing books and reading should be fun and that parents should not be put off by feeling they have to teach the mechanics of reading.

Margaret adds: “With young babies it’s best kept simple with singing lullabies, songs and nursery rhymes and then moving onto age related books as the child gets older.

“It’s easy for us in nursery because we are always singing rhymes, doing action songs and are surrounded by stimulating books. However, new parents may not have sung rhymes for many years and or have accessed children’s books since they were children. They’ve simply forgotten the traditional stories and rhymes they were brought up with. The good news is that there is so much advice and really easily accessible information out there to jog memories and you’re soon remembering songs from your own childhood. Once you are into the simple pleasure of sharing a good book with your child for about 10 minutes a day, you and your child will be hooked on reading.”

Although World Book day celebrations are a series of fun and creative activities, they are underlined by the serious need to get children into reading and to develop a love of books. Reading for just 10 minutes a day can make a huge difference to a child’s future. Children’s literature and books play a fundamental role in developing children’s academic engagement, development and life chances, providing the framework and stimulus through which to deepen their understanding of themselves and the world around them, through empathising with characters and situations in stories.

Further information on World Book day and activities you can do with your child is available at

Children 1st World Book Day Slideshow

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Chinese New Year Celebrations

Chinese New Year Celebrations at Children 1st @ Leicester and Children 1st @ Newark!

We wish you all a happy Chinese New Year

  • In Mandarin: sshin-nyen kwhy-ler
  • In Cantonese: sen-nin feye-lor

2015 is the Year of the Goat according to the Chinese 12 year animal zodiac. Here’s a glimpse of what’s been happening at two of our nurseries who used the occasion to help the children learn something about the Chinese culture.

We all know that before a celebration it’s good to have some decorations to brighten things up. So at Leicester the celebrations for Chinese New Year got underway with the children making Chinese lanterns. As you can see from the photographs the children had to concentrate really hard as they drizzled the glue onto the card which they then decorated with all kinds of shiny things.

Dressing up is also important for a party and the children really enjoyed trying on some beautiful traditional clothing and talking about the smooth, silky, beautifully coloured material.

However, the best part of a celebration is usually the food. Can you look at the photographs of our Chinese banquets without your mouth watering? Everyone had a great time learning the names of the foods and then of course sitting down to enjoy the food. So what did we have?

Crispy spring rolls and prawn crackers, sweet and sour chicken, vegetable chow mein and rice. Yum, yum!

Please share our celebration of Chinese New Year by clicking through the slideshow.

Chinese New Year Celebrations Slideshow

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