Flowers, cards and smiles all round as residents of The Shrubbery Nursing Home enjoyed a surprise Valentine’s visit from children at local nursery, Little Trinity in Kidderminster.

Nursery Manager, Miss Gaynor Carter, said: “We always like to celebrate Valentine’s Day and this year we’ve been focusing on others and the world outside. Visiting the residents at The Shrubbery was lovely, they were all so welcoming and the children thoroughly enjoyed the experience of meeting new people.”

Valentine’s Day, also called Saint Valentine’s Day or the Feast of Saint Valentine, is celebrated annually on February 14. Originating as a Western Christian feast day honouring one or two early saints named Valentinus, Valentine’s Day is recognized as a significant cultural, religious, and commercial celebration of romance in many regions around the world, although it is not a public holiday in any country.

Shrubbery resident Dennis Conway said that the visit had been fantastic and a delight to see all the children laughing and smiling and thanked the nursery.

The nursery encourages their youngest children from the age of 2-years to join in and take part in a range of creative play, with their Valentine’s activity able to be enjoyed by all. Enjoying a nice cuppa, Little Trinity staff also chatted with representatives from KEMP Hospice who were at the nursing home as part of their ‘Cuppa for KEMP’ campaign.

Miss Carter added: “The children had a wonderful time creating and painting their Valentine cards and then the sheer delight on their faces as they gave their flowers and cards to the residents.

“Lots of smiles and giggles before we said goodbye to everyone and began our short journey back to the nursery. It will be interesting to see what we do next year!”

Little Trinity Nursery in Kidderminster thoroughly enjoyed their Chinese New Year celebrations tasting traditional foods and taking part in a Dragon Dance on Tuesday 5th February.

Nursery Manager, Miss Gaynor Carter, said: “We always try to incorporate celebrations and festivals from a wide range of cultures so that the children can gain an appreciation and understanding of the many traditions and people of the world.”

Incorporating and promoting Understanding the World as part of EYFS (Early Years Foundation Stage) offers Little Trinity Nursery children numerous opportunities to discuss and participate in a variety of traditions and experiences that they may not experience in their home life.

Located within the grounds of Holy Trinity School on the Birmingham Road, the children from the age of 2-years all joined in trying a selection of Chinese foods.

Added Miss Carter: “Celebrating Chinese New Year is always fun with the children really enjoying their food tasting at morning snack time and our 2 and 3-year-old children in the Green Caterpillar and Yellow Bumble-Bee classes thoroughly enjoying making their very own dragon for their Dragon Dance in PE. Lots of fun was had by us all.”

The latest recruit at a Kidderminster school may be a little shorter than most pupils, and certainly more-hairy, but has already made a big impact on both pupils and staff.

School dog ‘Fern’ joined Holy Trinity School and Sixth Form Centre at the start of this academic year at the tender age of 3-months. Over the last 4-months she has been acclimatising to her new environment and getting to know her new friends, and although still only a puppy her natural ability to interact with children from 5-years to sixth formers has meant that she has very quickly adapted to being in school and loving the attention she receives.

Headteacher, Mrs Pamela Leek-Wright stated: “There has been an overwhelmingly positive response from all members of the school community and already the impact of having Fern in school is tangible. Regardless of age, there seems to be a need that can be fulfilled by interacting with Fern, who seems to be having a powerful impact on the emotional well-being within school.”

Although a school dog, Fern is very much part of a family and belongs to Mrs Leek-Wright, who had the idea of introducing a dog into school in the light of increasing concerns over mental health and the levels of stress that young people encounter in the modern-day education system. It has taken two years of planning, research and seeking advice to get to the reality of having a dog in school.

Added Mrs Leek-Wright: “Having enjoyed her first term, Fern is now very familiar with the sights, sounds and smells of her ‘work place’ and having settled exceptionally well she is now at an age to concentrate on specific training with her Dog Trainer so that she can start to join in classes over the coming term.”

Once fully trained, Fern will be used to support the school’s well-being programme and working alongside the school counsellor, will be a regular visitor to the school’s libraries, encouraging pupils to read to her, promoting confidence and independence in a skill that underpins all learning.

Receiving a letter personally addressed to one of their pupils, Little Trinity Nursery duly passed it on to 3-year old Alba Edwards parents when they came to collect her that day.

To everyone’s delight and surprise the letter was from a local lady who’d received Alba’s Christmas card as part of Kidderminster Library’s Christmas Card Appeal.

Nursery Manager, Miss Gaynor Carter, said: “Every year the children take part creating personal Christmas cards which are then distributed by Kidderminster Library to the elderly and housebound in the local community.

“It was such a lovely surprise for Alba to receive a ‘thank you’ message for what is, for all of us, a very special activity in our nursery calendar and such a good way to reach out to the housebound and elderly in our community, whilst helping to teach the children to think of others.”

Alba’s parents, Mark Edwards and Katie Stone, commented on how thoughtful and how delighted they were that Alba had received a letter of thanks and that they were going to put it in her special memory box so that she could see it when she’s older.

Celebrating their fifth birthday later this year, Little Trinity Nursery, based within the grounds of Holy Trinity School and Sixth Form Centre on the Birmingham Road, caters for pre-school childcare from 2 years of age.

Little Trinity Nursery in Kidderminster invited parents and staff to donate their Christmas card money in support of KEMP Hospice’s annual ‘Light Up A Life’ campaign.

Nursery Manager, Miss Gaynor Carter, said: “Our families as always were very generous and donated their Christmas card money and helped to reduce the number of Christmas cards needing to be recycled after Christmas. Thanks to everyone’s generosity and support we have managed to raise £148 to date.”

KEMP’s ‘Light up a Life’ as an annual campaign in which people can remember loved ones in a very special way during the festive season. People are invited to write a message or special memory to a loved one on a ‘Light up a Life’ Tag and hang their tag on one of KEMP’s ‘Light up a Life’ Christmas Trees.

Added Gaynor: “People have been extremely generous, and some parents have written Christmas wishes to other families and some of our children have also written their names on their Christmas tags independently.

“It’s been a huge success and helped to raise funds for such a worthwhile local charity!”

Children at Little Trinity Nursery in Kidderminster took to the stage to perform this year’s jingly Christmas Concert for their families.

Joining Santa and his Reindeer on the stage were the Christmas Puddings, Glittery Baubles, Snowflakes, Mince Pies, Twinkly Lights, Pretty Angels, Shining Stars, Snowmen and many Elves! With much excitement the hall filled with Christmas wonder as the Nursery’s 61 children, ranging from as young as 2-years through to 4-years of age, paraded on to the stage to perform and sing their Christmas tale of snow, presents, Santa and the joy of giving.

Nursery Manager, Miss Gaynor Carter, said: “The children have been practicing their songs for many weeks as part of our usual class-time, and just before the big day, we took them to the stage to rehearse just as if their families were watching them.

“They all love dressing up and performing for others and showing their families and friends what they can do, so it’s a fantastic opportunity to develop their self-confidence and social skills, with this year welcoming to the stage many reindeer and elves and an appearance from of course from Santa!”

In front of parents and family members the children sang and acted out their favourite Christmas songs.

Miss Carter added: “The concert was wonderful, and many of our children had speaking parts so they needed to remember their lines.

“Not only was it lots of fun, it was wonderful to see the children grow in confidence, standing on the stage in front of a big audience, and they did brilliantly!”

Donning hats, gloves, scarves and warm coats and ready to meet Santa, the children of Little Trinity Nursery in Kidderminster with giggles of delight set off for a magical Christmas adventure on the Severn Valley Railway.

Nursery manager, Miss Gaynor Carter, said: “Christmas is a magical time for children, and trains are quite the favourite, so to be able to enjoy a train journey and meet Santa at the same time was a fantastic opportunity and one not to be missed!”

The children at Little Trinity, from 2-years and upwards, take regular learning walks with their outside experiences then used in creative play and craft activities back in the classroom. As the nursery is located so close to the Severn Valley Railway it was an ideal opportunity to use their trip as a learning walk to the train station before embarking on their festive return journey to Highley from Kidderminster.

Miss Carter added: “The children had a lovely time with their friends, with lots of happy chatter helping to encourage their developing communication skills as they talked about road safety and our need to be careful as we walked to and from the station, as well as what they saw through the window of the train as we went along.

“The train ride alone created lots of excitement and giggles amongst the children but then when they realised they were meeting Santa and getting a present too, well it was hard to contain their excitement and squeals of delight, it was simply wonderful and a fantastic and fun Christmas adventure.”

Little Trinity Nursery children in support of Kidderminster Library’s festive Christmas Card Appeal have all been busy painting and colouring their Christmas cards ready for local people to enjoy.

Nursery Manager, Miss Gaynor Carter, said: “The children love to take part in creative activities and this seasonal pursuit enables them to use their artistic talents to make their own special Christmas card.”

Every year the nursery take part in the appeal with the children creating truly distinctive Christmas cards, which are then distributed by Kidderminster Library to the elderly and housebound in the local community at Christmastime, along with a selection of library books to read and enjoy throughout the festive season.

Using a whole host of design skills, the children now have numerous Christmas card creations.

Based within the grounds of Holy Trinity School and Sixth Form Centre on the Birmingham Road, Little Trinity Nursery offers pre-school childcare from 2 years of age, with imaginative play at the core of nursery activities helping to assist in the children’s hand and eye co-ordination, literacy and numeracy skills, motor skills and communication development.

Miss Carter added: “This annual activity offers the children a opportunity to express themselves and it’s lots of fun, whilst also helping to support development of fine motor skills as they practice writing their name on the inside of their Christmas card.

“Supporting the Christmas Card Appeal is such as worthwhile cause. It helps spread a little joy within the local community for those who may not be able to share Christmas with family.”

The Blues Brothers stormed into Kidderminster with a full-scale family-friendly production of the well-known and much-loved stage show at Holy Trinity School and Sixth Form Centre (22nd – 24th November).

With a cast of over 40 students, the show was produced and directed by the school’s Head of Music, Mrs Vikki Vincent and co-director and Head of Drama, Mrs Lynn Dawes.

Mrs Vincent commented: “With such a vast stage show we owe as always, our sincere thanks to everyone, both in front and behind the scenes, including our technical team and the school’s PTA, who all helped to make this production such a visual and musical success.

“With so much happening on stage at any one point, the choreography, costumes, lighting, stage props and cast were phenomenal, delivering a wholly professional and captivating show for everyone to enjoy.”

The culmination of months of planning and endless rehearsals, which began back in the summer term, the show played to packed audiences for both its evening and Saturday matinee performances, with the musical delivering a stunning stage-show worthy of any West End production and featured a live band.

Excitement is building for the annual PTA Christmas Fayre on Friday 30th November at Kidderminster’s Holy Trinity School and Sixth Form Centre following the arrival of the Christmas tree kindly sponsored by local business, Bill White Nurseries in Far Forest.

PTA chair, Mrs Michelle Howles, said: “We are once again indebted to Bill White for his generosity in sponsoring our Christmas tree and for his continued support of the school and the PTA Christmas Fayre”

Organised by the school’s Parents Teachers Association (PTA) the Christmas Fayre extravaganza is open to all and is a must-visit event with ‘pocket money presents’ face painting, cake-buying, external traders, tombolas and so much more!

Popular with local people due to the extensive range of seasonal handicrafts, toys, jewellery and Christmas goods available for purchase, and of course there is always the big PTA fundraiser raffle, with all monies raised ploughed back into the school for the benefit of its pupils.

Mrs Howles added: “It’s wonderful that our tree has been grown locally in the Far Forest and our sincere thanks to local tree surgeon, John Russell of Happy Banana Tree Services for helping fell this year’s tree, and as in previous years, the PTA will donate the tree to a local care home or charity in the area. Our sincere thanks also to Steven Brooke from Collision Repair Specialists who very generously transported it to the school for us.”

The Christmas Fayre is on Friday 30th November from 2pm to 4pm. More information is available from the PTA by emailing: [email protected]