Partnership with Parents
Settling in sessions
We believe strongly that a child is happiest at Nursery when he or she has been settled in the best possible way. All children are individuals and therefore may take more or less time to become completely settled within the Nursery environment.
If a home visit isn’t an option we advise strongly that the parent/guardian stays with their child for the full duration of the child’s first visit to the Nursery, where we would then take this opportunity to go through an exchange of information process and complete our settles and transitions pack which is vital to aid the settling in process.
Settling visits following the first will be adapted to meet the needs of the individual child and family. We have a flexible approach and will work together with the family to ensure the smoothest transition into nursery as possible.
We do advise a minimum of 3 settling sessions at the Nursery before your child’s start date, one of which will ideally include a meal time.
We offer the opportunity of a Nursery home visit whereby we would book in a convenient time to visit you and your child in your family home, allowing our first point of contact to be in their familiar environment. It will be the child’s proposed Key Carer who would attend would also be accompanied by a member of the senior team. Together they would bring along activities, photos and information about the nursery that they can share during the visit.
The main purpose of this visit is to give both the parent/guardian and child time to make initial bonds with their key person in preparation for their first visit to the Nursery. We will also use this opportunity to begin to complete a settles and transitions book which will be completed with the input of the practitioner, parent/guardian and child and is vital to aid the settling in process.
We hold parents evenings on a termly basis which are generally held in the evening although times can be flexible to suit the family. Appointment times are booked prior to the evening with your Key Person.
On the evening itself you will meet with your Key Person to discuss your child’s development progress over the past term, and then also what we will be setting out to achieve over the coming months. You will have the opportunity to look through your child’s development records which include all of your child’s observations, photographs and art work.
Also throughout the evening we invite you to stay to enjoy a tasting session run by our Nursery Cook which contains dishes from our current menu for you to try, view the Preschool Presentation put together by our Nursery Teacher or browse the selection of books on offer through Usbourne Books (or similar company).
Monthly newsletters are produced and sent to all parents on a monthly basis. This newsletter contains photographs and written summaries of some of the many things the children have been enjoying at Nursery over the past month and will detail any other information such as charity events held, family fun days etc. Birthday and other celebrations are included also and any forthcoming dates for the diary.
Within the newsletter will be a section relating to any staff news such as our Employee of the Month, based on your nominations, and for example promotions or changes within the Nursery.
Within your first visits to the Nursery you will kindly be asked to provide a selection of family photos in order for us to put together a family book for your child which stays at the Nursery and is accessible all of the time on the ‘Family Tree’. We feel these are important to each child and they are proven to ease the settling and transition process within the Nursery.
Individual Children’s Development Records
Observations of your child’s learning and development are recorded on a weekly basis and form the foundations of our ‘activity planning’. Observations are shared with you at the end of each week which also gives you the opportunity to share with us any information you feel relevant for that time, for example grandparents are visiting for the weekend or there’s going to be a visit to the dentist. This two way communication enables us to both prepare your child for events such as the dentist or thrive on the excitement that granny and grandpa came to stay.
Summaries of these weekly observations are completed on a termly basis every three months which highlights all achievements and possibly the development areas that we could focus on over the coming months. Our parents evening dates are arranged in line with these summaries and are shared with you at this time.
Once your child reaches the age of two, a two year old progress check will be completed. This is rather similar to the three monthly summaries but looks specifically at whether your child is meeting the recommended developmental milestones and what their characteristic of learning is.
Of course your child’s development record is accessible to you at any time, and if you wish to take this home for a quiet read you can just speak to your Key Carer who will sign it out for you
Parents into Play sessions
We absolutely welcome parents and grandparents into the Nursery for our play and stay sessions which include our weekly clubs for cookery, expressive arts and books, as well as any ad hoc days that you are available. The children love to show you their classroom and all that they get up to and we feel that it is imperative to build on that.
Many parents will join us for breakfast or hold on for another 5 minutes to watch the puppet show at the end of the day!
We love to hold parties and will have one for any possible occasion such as our annual Easter Bonnet Parade, Halloween Party Tea and Chinese New Year Celebration naming just a few, and hope that you too will be able to join us in the future.
EYFS home learning bags
Throughout the nursery we encourage a home school link as much and as often as possible...
Within each of our rooms we have a set of home learning bags, one for each area of learning, that are available for you to take home and enjoy with your child. The activities will be typical activities that would be on offer within the Nursery and we love to offer you the opportunity to experience this at home too.
Also within these bags are parent observation forms so that you can share with us any new and wonderful things your child has learnt. These then link into your child’s development record as a new achievement and/or new experience.
We are pleased to be able to offer parents a resource library which covers a wide variety of topics ranging from the Early Years Foundation Stage curriculum to potty training and from weaning to transitioning onto school.
If however you were to raise a topic of interest that we didn’t already have readily available we would always do our upmost to assist in researching this with you.
WOW boards and Curiosity Corners
Our WOW boards are another method of encouraging and promoting our Parents own input into their child’s day at Nursery.
Within each of our rooms we have on display a WOW board and Curiosity Corner where you have the opportunity to share with us any amazing news or a new interest your child has shown, whether it be your trip to the ducks at the weekend or that you’ve just learnt a new song. With this sort of information being shared we can incorporate this is some way of form into your child’s day at nursery through maybe a role play experience, discussion or specific activity. Opportunities are endless...
Parents Menus suggestions
Our menus are revisited on a regular basis by our Head Cook and rotate on a seasonal basis. We offer a varied balanced menu which we are consistently praised for and is one that the children will always thoroughly enjoy.
It is important that we offer a variety of meals that would too be offered at home and welcome any suggestions that you may have. You will find a menu suggestions form within your child’s room for you to share your ideas with us. Alternatively you can share your thoughts with the cooks themselves at one of the termly parent’s evenings where they will be offering a tasting session of the existing menu.
Each December we hold the biggest party the year. We offer separate parties for both our babies and toddlers and Pre School which will offer a fun filled time for all children, parents, grandparents, aunties, uncles and rest of the family!
Babies and Toddlers come together for a party in the morning which begins with a lively music and movement session led by an outside professional such as Jo Jingles or Tiny Mites. This is followed by a visit from someone very special, all the while whilst the grownups help themselves to a lovely selection of cakes, tea and coffee.
Pre School come together in the afternoon and put on their very own nativity performance to which weeks of practice comes together (most of the time). It’s tissues at the ready as they perform and sing in the costumes and make the audience extremely proud, and do not fear the words to all of the songs are displayed on a large projector so that you too may all join in! The performance is then followed by a visit from someone very special and the full buffet tea and mulled wine is served. The afternoon comes to an end with a professional children’s entertainer who will show a touch of magic, balloon moulding and lots of humorous fun.
It’ll certainly be a party for you to remember!
Sports Day & BBQ
On a wonderful summers day we invite our families to join us for our annual Pre School Sports Day.
It’s another photographic opportunity for all who attend, as you cheer on your team to the finishing line with our sports day event, which includes races such as the egg and spoon and obstacle race. After all the excitement we come back together at the Nursery for refreshments and our Summer BBQ.
Also on offer throughout this afternoon is enjoyment of a mobile farm consisting of ponies, sheep, rabbits etc, bouncy castle fun, face painting and an ice cream stall. A date not to miss!
At the end of each Summer term comes the time when we have to say goodbye to all those children who are taking that big step onto primary school.
Many of our Pre School children have been with us for several years, many even from the baby room so we feel that it is imperative that we celebrate their time at Nursery with a Graduation Party.
In preparation for the party the children will make their own graduation hats and on the day families are once again invited to join us for a party tea and ‘leaving ceremony’. During the ceremony the children will be wearing the self made hats and will be presented with a certificate and Positive Steps teddy bear as a leaving gift. Tissues are highly recommended
In addition to the monthly newsletters, weekly emails are sent out to parents which detail any other immediate news or updates. This includes favourite activities of that week and may also include things like announcements, requests and things to remember.
Many of our parents find this extremely useful and love that they receive regular communication form the Nursery as a whole
Questionnaires and Parents Comments Book
Parents views are extremely valuable to us and to encourage this we provide many opportunities for you to share your thoughts and feelings.
We send out annual Nursery Questionnaires which aks questions in general about the Nursery such as menu’s, routines and communication and then we also ask that parents complete a short questionnaire after each Parents Evening too.
All questionnaires are analysed and the findings shared which will include our reflection on any suggestions made
Within the Nursery foyer you will find individual comments cards and a Parents Message Book, which is an open book for you to share your everyday comments. Our Message Book is also floating around at all of our events.
As an employer we offer an Employee of the Month reward scheme and welcome parent nominations towards this. It may be that an individual has supported your child and your family in some way that you wish to share or just that you simply feel someone deserves a special recognition.