ELCC 2017-2018


 We are so sorry for the lack of updates but we are having technical issues, hope to be back soon!

Our Christmas songs














What a busy fun filled couple of weeks we are having. 

Tuesday morning we had a brilliant visit from the firemen bringing the fire engine to the School. The children got to sit inside and also have a turn of the water hose, cleaning the Brakers van!

Unfortunately they were not able to return in the afternoon as planned as they had to attend a real fire!

Thursday is our Christmas party with party food and games and Friday we have our Christmas sing song!


48 Hour rule

Unfortunately there seems to be a lot of bugs going round at the moment, as is usual for this time of year. Please can we remind everyone that if your child has sickness or diarrhea they should not return to Nursery until 48 hours AFTER the last episode.

This is extremely important to  prevent any bugs spreading further, we appreciate your full co-operation. 

Elves on the Shelf

This week Candy and Larry have cause all sorts of trouble but the children have enjoyed searching for them and finding out what they’ve been up. Some of the favourite this week was Larry wrapping the sink up and getting stuck inside. Candy playing the drums and having her head stuck in the cereal box… we think she put Larry in a bowl of rice Krispy and got stuck in the box.

We braved the treacherous weather to walk to the CCC in the afternoon to sing our Christmas songs to the over 50 group. We are so proud at how well they all did and how wonderful their singing was. The CCC were absolutely delighted and would like us to go every year!

We had a very exciting day yesterday, a yummy christmas lunch for those that stay for lunch, with crackers as well!



Developing Young Workforce!

I am sure some of you will have already heard from your children that we have been very busy making reindeer food. The children helpled to decide how to make this by using porridge and coloured sugar. We have had a production line in Nursery, mixing, filling the bags and labeling.

We will have a shop tomorrow in the Nursery corridor. The children will be selling their reindeer dust for £1.00. and raffle tickets for our hampers £1.00 a strip. As the children will be taking the money,could it if possible be a £1.00 coin, unless you are buying multiple tickets.


Culduthel Christian Centre

Tomorrow afternoon we are going to sing to the lunch club at the Culduthel Christian Centre. The children have been practising their songs and are looking forward to tomorrow. We will be walking along to the Christian centre so please make sure your child is suitably dressed with jacket, hat, gloves, wellies or appropriate shoes so their feet stay dry and warm. Everyone can also wear a Christmas jumper or t shirt,  festive colours, Santa hats or anything festive!


Elf on the shelf 

What have your elves been up to at home? We love hearing all the elf stories each day. Yesterday (Monday) Candy had fallen and bumped herself. She covered herself in plasters, had a big bandage on her arm and Larry was sitting in a tub as a boat in the sink.

Forest School

Yesterday we braved the snow and attended our 5th Forest Schools session, the children all came well prepared in their warm clothes and so did the staff,  with some off us struggling to walk as we had so many clothes on! But what a great fun we had!

We went for an adventure through the woods with the children leading the way, deciding which routes to take and really showing how far they’ve come in confidence and taking the lead in only a few weeks! It’s amazing to watch how each child has really grown in confidence since our very first session. We are so sad that it will be the last session for this group of children next week and also we will be saying goodbye to Shona.  (the lady from the forest). Shona has been a great help to us and we will miss her but hopefully she’s going to pop along to our sing along!!

Shona was so proud of us and what we’ve learnt and how safe and responsible we’ve been in the woods so she decided we could make a camp fire this week,  it was so exciting! The children listened so well and followed Shona’s rules we got to toast our own snack on the fire. 

Snowy Fun

Have a fabulous snowy weekend. Stay safe!



We have managed to collect a lot of lost property this term! Please come in and have a look in our lost property tray (under the self registration table) , if not claimed we will be donating it to charity!

It’s also beginning to be the time of year when hats, scarves and gloves are needed, please could you name your child hats, gloves and scarf so if they go missing we can return them to you!

Also if bags can have your child’s name inside that is very helpful as well.

In such a busy cloakroom sometimes things get mixed up and people can have the same items , so if all items are named it helps us ensure the right stuff is going home.

Thank you!

Elf of the shelf 

Today (Wednesday) Larry had been up to his tricks again , he had made a cup of coffee for himself but instead of putting the coffee in the mug he spilt it on the table and had written in it! Unfortunately Snowbell didn’t come back to nursery but we have a new elf who arrived at nursery , Candy , and we look forward to seeing what tricks Candy gets up to!

Elf of the shelf 

On Monday night again the elves got up to mischief and on Tuesday morning when the boys and girls came for breakfast and snack they found that one elf Larry had changed the milk blue and Snowbell had made a flour angel with lots of flour.


Elf on the Shelf

Over the weekend Snowbell and Larry got up to lots of mischief and decorated the trees with pants and toilet roll! The children thought it was very funny and were super excited to see what else they’d get up to.


Have you seen our amazing gingerbread house in the Buttercup room!

Mrs Phillips and Miss McNeil created our wonderful house and the children helped to decorate it. The children are having great fun playing in this new exciting house. Photo to follow:


Thank you!!

Thank you so much for all the christmas donations we have received, the Nursery is looking fantastic!

Also a huge thank you to Scott’s mummy for the beautiful advent calendar donated to us. The children are all getting an opportunity to open a drawer and get an exciting gift!


 Elf on the shelf 

This morning the children meet two new mischievous members of the nursery class Snowbell and Larry have come back to join in our festive fun in nursery. They brought a letter with them from Santa saying he had sent them to join in all our fun at nursery but also they will be watching us and reporting back to Santa every night!!

We can’t touch Snowbell and Larry because if we do they will lose all their magic!

I wonder what they will get up to over the weekend?

St Andrews Day

We are excited about St Andrews Day tomorrow, feel free to wear something tartan if you wish!

We have been learning about St Andrew and the Scottish Flag this week and have also been doing some Scottish Dancing!

Tomorrow we will be sampling some tasty shortbread!



The Children have been learning to be responsible and taking care of our school environment by litter picking after each break and disposing of all the rubbish in the appropriate bins.

Christmas Sing a Long Friday 22nd December



A letter to follow with more information.






We were very lucky to get a visit from Bookbug this week where we listened to some lovely stories. All the children sat lovely and listened really well.

Forest Schools
We have been very excited to start the first 6 week block of Forest Schools influenced by the play based centred pedagogy of Scandinavia known in Denmark as Friluftsliv (Free open air life).    Both sessions with Mrs Reed, Miss McNeil, Mr Edwards and Miss Paul went really well.  We are hoping that with weekly visits to the forest school, children will have an increased sense of independence, self- esteem and confidence.  During these sessions there is an emphasis on how to stay safe outdoors focusing on looking after themselves, their friends and the environment.   Although these sessions will be mainly child led there will be a group time at the beginning to establish safety rules and boundaries followed by free play and activities. To conclude the session we will be reviewing the children’s thoughts and feelings on the morning, discussing learning to allow staff to develop and extend for the following week.


We observed some fantastic Role Play which children directed and imagined themselves. They also showed the ability to work within a team, negotiating between themselves and resolving conflict. This fluid approach to learning allowed staff to observe children finding and using large sticks as horses and protecting the castle (a fallen tree) from the dragons, crocodiles (a fallen tree in a swamp environment) and snakes! We played “1, 2, 3 Where are you” a game similar to hide and seek. This game is being used to encourage children to use their voices if they feel unsafe or lost. We found different leaves and sorted them into the same shapes and also explored some woodland puppets.

For the first session Shona created a base camp for us so that we had a focal point and shelter. To warm us up Shona used the Kelly kettles to make hot chocolate and some children observed a small fire whilst maintaining a safe distance using out boundary markers.


We have received some very positive feedback from children

“It was the best day ever and the best best best adventure!” – Roan

“I want to go back everyday Mrs Reed but we have to wait until Monday” – Rosie

“It was such fun in the forest” – Finn

“We can’t go past the signs, only if you have a teacher with you” – Emma

“I got really muddy” -Duncan



We would like to remind parents that all feedback is welcome and if you have any questions or concerns please ask us. We are all very eager to get back into the woods to continue our learning and develop our skills.



Do you have any christmas decorations you can donate to Nursery? We would love to make our  Nursery look fabulous this Christmas so any would be gratefully received.

Thank you!




Please can anyone who has not returned the forest school slips do so as soon as possible as we are planning for the next 6 week block.

Thank you!



We all had a lot of fun on our cinema trip this week. All the children were very well behaved and enjoyed the bus trip and the film Captain Underpants. Thank you to all our parent helpers on the day, we hope you enjoyed it too!

As we have been learning about fire engines, Alexis asked …

“How big is a fire engine?”

So we measured out the length of one (10m) using the boys and girls. Here is Noah and Catriona being measured by Molly.

Jackson counted that it took 9 boys and girls and lots of giggles to measure out the fire engine!!!



Does anyone have any books they no longer need and can donate to Nursery on firefighters or fire stations to link with our current interest?

Much appreciated 


Rebecca designed her own Rapunzel Castle using our coloured building blocks, making a stairs, window and three doors. “You can use the stairs to get up to the top”.



As the weather is now getting a little cold can we please ask that you provide your child

with suitable winter weather clothing, for when they play outside, eg a warm jacket , hat and gloves. CAN THEY ALSO PLEASE BE NAMED. 

Also if possible can indoor shoes not be slippers in case there is a fire alarm as it could be wet or snowy and we have to line up on the grassy field.

Thank you!














The children had a lot of fun at the dress up Disco, we loved the costumes, can you guess who is who?





Fredie was a great helper today, he wiped all the snack tables and showed good cutting skills preparing our Bananas. Well done!


We have been learning about the story of Diwali this week. Ask your children what they know about princess Sita, Diva’s and the special powers Hanuman has!



Holly made a lovely skeleton using glue and cotton buds on black paper

Halloween Dress up day    

Tuesday 31st October

We are having a dress up day next Tuesday 31st October in ELCC, children can choose if they want to dress up for the day.

We would kindly ask for no masks please  as they can be scary for some of the children.

Lia was exploring this weeks math game Logo bricks,making patterns the same as the card,using the correct colour of bricks.


National Childhood Flu Vaccine

The government has a campaign to highlight the importance of the flu vaccine. For children aged 2-5 you need to arrange this with your GP.


We are looking forward to a fun filled busy term and are excited to be back.


We have welcomed our new EYP Miss McNeil today who is already an experienced EYP and will be a great asset to our expanding team.



A reminder of the dress up disco on Thursday this week:

We are excited to welcome Louise MacDougall to the nursery. She is a HNC Early Education and Childcare student from Inverness College – UHI. Louise will attend the nursery for 4 days per week, Monday – Thursday over three blocks of five weeks, starting on 23/10/17 and finishing on 19/04/18.



This week the children have been learning about Autumn leaves, they went on an adventure around the school to look for different colours and sizes of leaves.

Care Inspectorate Visit

 ELCC recently had a care inspectorate visit and we are very pleased to obtain grade 5 star grades. The full report can be found here:


Thank you to all our parents who completed questionnaires and also to those that got questioned during their visits to and from Nursery.

Our grades were:.

Quality of care and support 5 – Very Good
Quality of environment 5 – Very Good
Quality of staffing – not assessed
Quality of management and leadership – not assessed



  Lost Property

Thank you for keeping our lost property to a minimum this term, here is what we have left, please collect it by Friday or it will be donated to charity.


Ashie house, one of the school house groups are organising a crazy dress day for this Friday 6th October. Your child can come in a crazy outfit, back to front clothes if they choose.

It is for our friends of Drummond School who are raising funds to purchase costumes for their play at Eden Court next term to promote team ethos and working together to achieve more.

Any donations are welcome.

Our Nursery Rhyme for this week 2nd October 17 if you would like to practise at home.


Autumn leaves are falling down,

Falling down, falling down,

Autumn leaves are falling down,

Watch them falling.

Yellow, orange ,red and brown,

Red and brown, red and brown,

Yellow, orange,red and brown,

Watch the them falling.

Well done Fredie for completing your stepping stone today! Recognising and matching together numbers 1-10. 


Exploring ‘Incy Wincy Spider’ game Rosie recognised and counted numbers 1-10 to help her spider get to his web. 

Lucy and Emma demonstrated how they can recognise the letters in their names and put them in the correct order.  Very good work girls !!



Coffee and Chat Feedback

A huge thank you to all parents/carers who made it along to our coffee and chat session and also those who sent their apologies and completed the form in the hallway. Your opinions are valuable and enable us to continually move forward therefore we really appreciate your participation.

We have compiled the issued raised and identified how we can move things forward.

Thank you from ELLC Team

Coffee and chat feedback sheet Sep 2017

Jackson and Theo made some creepy crawly discoveries in the bug hotel and showed their friends.

Up and coming stay and play dates –

Monday 2nd October

Wednesday 4th October

Thursday 5th October

Friday 27th October

Monday 30th October

Thursday 2nd November

Amy explored making apple crumble for her Learning Journey.


Murphy was a great helper! He wiped the snack table and got everything ready for snack. Thank you Murphy!


Aila was learning how to care for our teeth during a child smile visit yesterday. She took a turn to brush Mojo the Monkeys teeth.

Angus mark making in a tray of soil, he wanted to write his name.

We would like to welcome a new member of our ELCC team Miss S McNeil who is starting with us after the October holidays.


A reminder that the photographer is with us tomorrow taking individual photos. If your child doesn’t attend Nursery on a Friday you are welcome to bring them in and stay with them whilst they get their photo taken. The photographer is starting at 930am.



Mary and Mojo from childsmile came to visit us today. They explained how important it is to look after our teeth and how to clean them correctly. The children found out that you must not share toothbrushes as you could get germs and to brush every morning and every evening before bed. Look out for some photos here soon.

Every child will get their own toothbrush at Nursery, you should receive a letter soon to return to us if you wish to opt out of tooth brushing  for your child at Nursery.


Continuing with our mini-beasts theme at Nursery the children have helped to create a wonderful bug hotel in our garden. They decided what items we would need, and how to make it cozy for lots of bugs. This has been wonderful to see and has created lots of excitement. Look out tomorrow for some photos of our bug hotel which will be posted here.

Is it really the first day of Autumn tomorrow! We are looking forward to lots of autumn themed activities in Nursery and would love it if you could look for some items with your child to bring in to show us, or use for art activities. For example – conkers, different coloured leaves.

Archie and Aila making jelly in our Nursery kitchen, mixing the jelly pieces with water and using a whisk. They both wanted to learn how to do this for their learning journeys.

Logan spent time exploring the ‘busy fingers’ tray in the Rainbow room today. He was working on further developing his fine motor skills. His favourite toy was the “spinning top.”

Selena did a drawing of a spiders web for our mini beasts display.

Lia is  learning self help skills, she was spreading her own bread for snack.



Molly was also exploring the math bug game she matched 6 bug legs to her ladybird with confidence. well done molly.


Isabella, Arran and Indi playing the maths bugs game, matching the number of legs to the written number


 Kristina is learning about letters and sounds for her stepping stone. She identified all the letters on her Alphabet jigsaw.



Individual School Photos will be taken on Friday 22nd September, we will do our best to keep your children clean and tidy before they have their photo taken. 


Stay and Play next week on Wednesday 20th & Friday 22nd

You can come with your child to Nursery at anytime during their nursery session for up to an hour, sign up sheets are on the information board.


Exploring our number bug game Reece counted out 4 legs to create his own mini beast.

Den Building

The boys and girls have had the opportunity to take part in den building again.  What fantastic imaginations they all have!  Here’s Emma, Archie & Eve keeping warm around the ‘campfire’.


In service days!

A reminder that the nursery will be closed next week on Monday 18th and Tuesday 19th September due to the in-service days.

Angus concentrating on threading the beads onto the string and following the pattern on the card.


Link for childcare vouchers


We have been doing different mark making activities this week, has your child used different materials to mark make.   It could’ve been cotton buds, branches , pens on the whiteboard or their fingers in powder paint. We also asked the child to mark  on our floor book which bug they wanted to learn more about. The winner was a spider! 

We also had some fun dancing to sticky kids inside due to a few downpours, what was your child’s favourite song? 



Isabella and Eve had lots of fun with Miss Nicolson playing different parachute games outside in the sun on Wednesday! 

Nuala was making patterns using the pegs and the peg board. She was able to continue and complete one, as well as create her own. Well done!

Rebecca is learning to make playdough for her stepping stone. Discovering  what ingredients are  needed, she  measured  out some flour and mixed  this with some water. “It feels hot and soft”.

Lia is learning to put her shoes by herself and selena is learning about butterflies to complete their stepping stones .

It’s great fun painting with a branch on an extra big piece of paper !


Exploring mark making as we decided how we wanted to vote. Would we learn about spiders, worms or butterflies?


It’s getting nearer to that time of year again where we have lots of sniffles and colds. If you can spare a box of tissues for the nursery we would be delighted!  All donations welcome! 


We would appreciate if parents from last year could please have a hunt around their houses  to see if you can find one of our discovery bags. We seem to be missing two and wondered if they have been forgotton about.  They are the small bags with a measuring tape, binoculars and a magnifying glass. Thank you! 


A reminder that our coffee and chat sessions are happening this Thursday, see earlier post for more details.

Gregor enjoyed listening to a CD Story, The Very Greedy Bee, along with some friends.


Ellieanna has been a lovely friend this week to one of our new starts, Cameron. Together they were washing the babies “to get all the dirt off them” in our water tray activity. It is exciting for us to watch new friendships develop!


The children are currently showing a real interest in bugs so we are learning all about different types of bugs. The children are searching for them outside and we also have lots of activities in the nursery connected to bugs. Alexis brought her own snail into nursery for us to see.

We are also learning about babies  and how they grow, the photos are from two of our wall displays, come in and have a look at them!



Some of our outside fun!

We have been doing lots of activities outside this week including making a worm house, making lovely pictures by crushing our garden flowers onto cloth and preparing our beetroot.

Can you help?

We are looking to further develop our garden area and would be delighted to receive any of these items that you would be happy to donate. Thank you!

Metal spoons

old saucepan lids

old oven shelves

an adults spade

Increase of hours survey

We would like to invite our parents/careers to complete the survey by following the attached link, or type into your address bar if the link doesn’t work.


The survey asks about your use of and experiences of early learning and childcare (ELC) or what was commonly known as ‘pre-school education’. Children aged three and four, and some eligible two year olds in Scotland are currently entitled to 600 hours of free early learning and childcare every year. The Scottish Government plans to expand this to 1140 hours per year by 2020. These government funded places are provided by a range of organisations such as nurseries, childminders, playgroups or family centres.

To help plan for the increase in free ELC hours, the Scottish Government is interested in hearing the views of parents and carers on how they use early learning and childcare at the moment, and how they might use this in the future.

Your response is strictly confidential. The survey is being run for the Scottish Government by Craigforth – independent researchers. The Scottish Government will not know who has taken part, and no-one outside Craigforth will have access to individual responses. Our reporting of survey results will also make sure that no-one taking part can be identified. Please skip any questions that you do not wish to answer, and you can stop the survey at any time.

If you have any questions about the survey, please call Craigforth on Freephone 0800 027 2245 or email survey@craigforth.co.uk. Everyone taking part has the chance to enter a prize draw to win one of 10 x £100 cash prizes.

Wow Wall!

We would love to hear of any achievements outside of Nursery and have our wow wall all ready and waiting for some photos of your children. If your child has recently learnt a new skill or achieved something exciting eg riding their bike without stabilisers, or gaining a new swimming certificate, please bring a photo in so that we can share it and put it on our wow display wall.


Goodbye Mrs Leslie

We said goodbye to one of our team members last week, Mrs Angela Leslie. The staff and children will miss you but wish you the very best in your new nursery at Cradlehall School. 

Baby Photos!

Have you brought a baby photo of your child into Nursery yet? We are very excited to see them and have asked for them as we are learning about how we are all different, and also how we change as we get older. Take a look at them on the wall in the buttercup room.

The ELCC team will also be bringing their baby photos in, can you guess who is who? We hope the colour of the photos doesn’t make it too easy for you! 

Our garden improvements!

We thought it would be nice for you all to see some of the work that was involved in revamping our Nursery Garden!


Our children have been helping us do our morning checks in the garden to make sure it is safe for us to play! 

We have been doing lots of exploring in our outdoor area to see what bugs we can find.

‘Coffee & Chat’ Sessions

Dear parents/ carers of children in our Early Learning & Childcare setting,

Now that we are all settling in to Lochardil life, we would like to invite you all to join us at one of the planned ‘Coffee & Chat’ sessions. This will be an opportunity to:

  • Reflect on our Early Learning & Childcare provision so far, &
  • Share what you have to say,
  • Current challenges or concerns you may have,
  • Listen to others,
  • Make suggestions for improvement

We would love to hear your views and answer any questions you may have, to help us improve and make next steps to ensure our pupils have a settled and purposeful experience. Working together to move this area forward within our school is important to us.


  • Thursday 7th September 2017 at
  1. 9.15am – 10am or  
  2. 1.30pm – 2.15pm

Each session will be held in the canteen. Please choose and attend the one most suitable for you.Our children are the world’s most valuable resource and hope for the future, together we want to engage them in an excellent education for lifelong learning and happiness.

I look forward to meeting with you.

Thank you, Miss C Mackenzie, Childcare Manager

Our first Week

What a busy fun first week we had in Nursery. The children are starting to settle very well and are getting to know the nursery routines and finding their favourite area. A lot of enjoyment was had in our newly revamped garden. It was great to see the children playing in the outside sand pit , on the astro turf and the mud kitchen. Some more photos of outside play will be added this week.

We are all getting to know each other and are very proud of how our new children are settling in.

This week we are learning about some of the nursery rules,  kind hands, walking feet, looking eyes, and listening ears, you should start to see some of the children’s work on this very soon.


Goodbye Miss Mitchell!

The nursery staff said a sad goodbye to one of our team on Friday, the lovely Miss Rhian Mitchell. All the staff and nursery children will miss her very much, but wish Miss Mitchell every success in her teacher training.

Thank you for a wonderful 4 years Miss Mitchell, good luck , enjoy your studying and keep in touch! 





Help please!

It would help us massively if all your children’s items, eg shoes and clothes were labelled with their names. Thank you!

We are creating a tinker table and would be very grateful of any donations for it. Items we are looking for are:  extra large nuts, screws bolts, washers, old keyboards, any donations would be gratefully appreciated.

Does anyone have any empty liquid soap bottles? We  want to create self service painting for the children 



Just to let all parents, carers and grandparents know that we have stay and play sessions available at Nursery to give you the opportunity to stay with your child and see them having fun! It can be at any time during the session for up to an hour. The dates and times are displayed on the information board outside the buttercup room.

The first dates are: 21st August 24th August 29th August 1st September & 6th September.

Pop your name up, we would love to see you!!


The new Childcare Billing Database


Our new and improved database is now live and ready to go. Your patience regarding billing and invoices for the past year has been extremely appreciated. As you can imagine it has been a very busy year with over 100 schools across highland starting to provide a flexible provision.

The first round of statements for this school year will be issued via email at the end of September – this will include usage for August and September. After this parents/carers will receive statements via email at the end of each month. It is really important that parent/carers inform us of any change to their email address.

Direct Debit payments – as you can imagine this has been a monumental task – collecting and processing forms from most of our families across Highland. Due to the size of this operation not all Direct Debits have been established on time for the first round of payments at the end of August. There is no way to establish which families have been set up on time. The first DD payment will either be the end of August or the end of September. I would like to thank you all for your patience while we move from one system to the next.

New Staff

We would like to offer a huge warm welcome to our two new Early Years Practitioners.

Mrs Philip and Miss Macleod have joined our ever expanding team and are very excited to get to know all the children and their families. If you have not met them yet please introduce yourself to them.

Both Mrs Philip and Miss Macleod will be working in the morning here at Lochardil, with Miss Macleod starting at 8am and Mrs Philip starting at 9am.


Lochardil ELCC welcomes our Nursery Children and parents or carers back after the summer break. We also want to extend a very warm Lochardil welcome to all our new children and their parents or carers. 

It’s going to be a very busy but exciting first week and our initial aim is to ensure your children  are happy and settled.  We will be showing the children our lovely nursery and wonderful outdoor space which has recently been revamped, learning routines and some of our nursery rules. These are important to be able to provide a safe and happy environment.

Please do not hesitate to approach any of the staff team if you have any queries, concerns or any worries at all.

We will be sharing some photos of our nursery in the coming week.