Indiana, your days here at Chelsea House are very busy – you find lots of activities that interest you. When you first moved into the Kowhai Room, you very much liked to play and interact with the teachers, and whilst you still enjoy this, particularly one-on-one time with a teacher, I have noticed how you now also like to play independently or alongside other children.

You’re happy to choose an activity that interests you and you stay at that activity for a long time, persisting and persevering until you are satisfied you have completed whatever you set out to achieve. You have a great ability to concentrate and focus towards what you are doing and this is a great skill to have.

I have seen you exhibit this focus in many areas of your day Indiana. From completing a puzzle, creating a piece of art work or looking after the ’babies’ in the home corner – you’re always there for a considerable amount of time. One day recently I noticed that you’d been sat at the table for about 10 minutes playing alone with the play dough and match sticks. You were methodically putting every stick (and a few feathers!) into the play dough! I came and sat down next to you and you told me you were making a ’birthday cake’. You sat there for about 15 to 20 minutes in total, happily creating your ’cake’.

The fact that you can concentrate for long periods of time like this tells me that you have a real sense of belonging here at Chelsea House which enables you to feel relaxed, allowing you to concentrate and focus on the tasks you choose.

The ability to concentrate, and not be distracted by others or what is going on around you (which can be quite a challenge in such a busy environment!) is a very important skill to have that will enable you to absorb information and learn Indiana. It will not only serve you well now as you learn and grow at this stage in your life, but also throughout the rest of your life.

I have also noticed that you need support in this area at times as well Indiana. Maybe if you’re tired or a child interrupts your play/ activity you sometimes require support in working through this. You have such a great ability to communicate verbally but in these situations you often need encouragement to use your words to express the emotions you are feeling and what you would like to tell the other child. You have demonstrated empathy and understanding of emotions when other children are upset, for example by telling me that a particular child is sad if you hear them crying, and also through dramatic play. However, when it’s your own emotions that are running high, you still need support to work through this.

After talking with the teachers in the Pohutukawa Room, as a team we devised a strategy that would enable you to start working through these situations with less and less help from us. We decided that we would give you some initital guidance and support and then leave you to work through the emotions that you are experienc-ing. ConcentrationOnce you calmed down, we would then approach you to see if you need any further help. We also use a lot of open-ended questions to encourage you to think about how YOU can solve the problem yourself.

We have been consistent in this approach and you’ve come such a long way since moving into the Kowhai Room—you are needing less help from teachers during these times. You are beginning to work through you’re own problems by yourself and we will continue to

Teacher : Sophie Knight