GROUPING OF CHILDREN
Children are organised into groups, currently during COVID 19, known as 'bubbles'. These bubbles cannot mix:
Caterpillars Nursery Class - for children aged 2 - 3 years
Butterflies Pre - school Nursery Class - for children aged 3 - 4 years
- For children aged 2-3 years there is at least one adult to every 4 children.
For children aged 3-4 years there is one adult to every 8 children.
Adult child ratios in the Nursery are planned in accordance with Government guidelines and are always increased if children are taken on trips out of Nursery.
Children work in small groups for group work with Teachers or Key Persons and join together in their classes for self initiated play.
- The Nursery has an Early Years Professional teacher who leads the planning and organisation of the curriculum and care. She is supported by a deputy manager, two room leaders and a team of qualified nursery nurses and nursery assistants. The Nursery is supported by Portsdown Primary School Inclusion Manager and SENCO as well as the school Welfare Team.
- Children are allocated a Key Person who is responsible for planning and managing their care and learning.
- Staff names and photos are displayed in each room.
- Prior to working in Nursery all staff and students are checked by the DBS for their suitability for working with children. If visitors or parents attend nursery they are always supervised by a member of staff and not left alone with children.
- All visitors are expected to sign in and out of the building.
HELPING YOU AND YOUR CHILD TO SETTLE INTO PORTSDOWN NURSERY
- We recognise you have played a very important role in your child's learning and development.
- We hope as your child prepares to start Portsdown Nursery you will continue your crucial role in helping and supporting your child in nursery.
- We want your child to settle happily and confidently and for you to feel a partner in your child's education and development.
- We feel it is vital that you tell us all about your child and we will spend time with you in your home and at Nursery before your child starts so you can tell us about your child’s routines, interests, likes, dislikes, health and development.
- We know you will feel more confident in entrusting your child with us if you are informed as to what your child is doing, will need in nursery and how you can support your child settling.
- Our website, handbook and leaflets aim to answer questions parents have asked us in the past about children starting Nursery.
- We constantly try to improve our practice, so if there is any information you feel parents would find useful, please let us know.
At Portsdown Nursery we aim to keep you informed about:
The environment and organisation
Your child's progress and development
Your child's routine
With whom your child is working
Policies and procedures of Portsdown Nursery
Who you can talk to if you have a concern
The Nursery classrooms are surrounded by safe and enclosed outside areas which are landscaped with grass, safety play surfaces, and tarmac. This provides opportunity for taking learning and development outside.
The Nursery environment includes:
a range of bikes and trucks for a specifically designed roadway
sand, water and mud kitchen play for exploring and combining materials
role play areas and small world areas
hills for running and climbing
large adventure climbing apparatus with safe surfacing
construction apparatus for building
opportunities for exploring and using ICT equipment
opportunities for planting, growing and harvesting produce
safe shaded areas for all weather protection
music and sound exploration
opportunities to develop number and awareness of shape and measure
opportunities to develop mark making, drawing and writing with a range of resources
opportunities for exploration and investigation
opportunities to explore media and materials e.g. paint, malleable materials, glue
- The Nursery environment indoor and outdoors is organised into areas which allow children to learn through play.
- Areas are clearly organised and labelled to enable children to learn where things are so they can independently access resources for themselves and learn to tidy them away.
- We promote health and safety at all times through modelling and interactions with children.
- Areas are bright, attractive and stimulating, displaying children’s current activities, pictures, photographs and words. We encourage children to feel that what they do is valued and we display a range of their work.
- Through providing first-hand experience, pictures, artifacts, photographs, resources and activities we provide a rich and stimulating environment, in which children feel safe secure and cannot help but play, explore and learn.
SUPPORTING LEARNING AND DEVELOPMENT
- In Caterpillars and Butterflies children work in groups with a Key Person as well as having opportunity to learn and play following their own interests in the environment with adults supporting and working alongside.
- Nursery staff work closely with children to develop positive attitudes to learning through play across a broad and balanced curriculum.
- Children learn to be independent, work alongside and to play with other children, to take turns, share and listen with others.
- With adults working along side them children are encouraged to explore, investigate, think creatively and problem solve.
- Children are encouraged to be confident to talk with peers and adults, to say how they feel and do things for themselves.
- Children have daily access to the inside and outside environment where there is opportunity to explore a range of experiences for learning including:-
Personal, Social and Emotional Development
Helping children develop confidence and independence as they play and
explore; learning to follow the daily routine and understand rules and expectations
for appropriate behaviour; understanding their own feelings and
developing respect for others.
Communication and Language
Developing listening and attention skills; learning to distinguish between sounds;
joining in with and learning rhymes and songs;
Developing understanding and talking, through broadening vocabulary, and using
longer and more complex sentences, as well as responding to and asking questions.
Encouraging confidence in exploring different ways of moving individually and in a group with increasing control e.g. using wheeled toys, exploring construction equipment, small games equipment
e.g. ball play climbing, balancing and tunneling play, den building;
Supporting children to explore opportunities for holding and using large and
small equipment for making marks and joining materials.
Encouraging understanding of how their bodies work developing
independence in self-care.
Encouraging interest in looking at and talking about books; learning how to use
and handle books; developing enjoyment in listening to stories and
reading. Supporting children joining in and remembering rhymes.
Developing interest in mark making and writing so they give meaning to the marks
Encouraging enjoyment, understanding and awareness of numbers and counting through practical activities rhymes and real experiences.
Exploring and talking about shapes and measures. Opportunities for
Knowledge and understanding
Investigative play - texture play e.g.- sand/water/mud/playdough. Finding out
and exploring the environment and the world through their senses. Talking about their observations and asking questions. Using and exploring ICT. Talking about people and the community.
Role and imaginary play, exploring materials and media in messy play, painting,
construction and malleable materials, exploring and responding to music and
- In addition facilities are provided for:
Cooking, snacks and meals and sleeping if children require a sleep in the day.
THE NURSERY CURRICULUM
- Portsdown Nursery provides high quality childcare and education, which builds upon and extends children's development and understanding, to provide a foundation for future learning and achievement.
- The Nursery curriculum is based on the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) curriculum published by the government. You can find information about the curriculum as well helpful advice on www.foundationyears.org.uk a website from pregnancy to children aged 5.
- Through rich experiences and a wide range of learning situations, children's interaction with people and exploration of the world around them is developed in a safe and secure environment. As children grow and change they are supported and provided with opportunities to enable them to become socially aware, to communicate and learn about their world.
- Children's learning is developed through well- planned play, which is enjoyable and challenging.
- Continual assessment of children enables adults to plan appropriate opportunities to encourage individual and groups of children to play, talk, observe, plan, question, experiment, explore, repeat and reflect to develop their understanding and growth. Nursery staff liaise closely with families to share and discuss observations and assessments of children’s development and plan for their next steps in learning.
THE SECURITY OF A CONSISTENT ROUTINE
- Children are encouraged to follow a daily routine to help them feel secure in the fact that they know what is happening next.
- Young children have differing needs and may need more time with certain activities or experiences. The routines can be flexible in timing to flow with individual needs.
- If children need to sleep during the day we are able to offer provision in a quiet area.
- Children sleep in beds or buggies dependent upon parental request.
- All Nursery bedding is washed after use.
- Children are closely monitored at 10 minute intervals when sleeping.
- A written record is kept of their sleeping pattern and checks made.
- Where possible we will try to follow your routines and requests with regard to sleeping.
- Children do not sleep with bottles or drinks.
- The Nursery offers nappy changing and toilet training facilities. Your child's Key Person will work with you to establish your routines you use at home and will liaise with you about how your child is progressing in this personal skill.
- Nappies are changed throughout the session with the child's individual needs and routines in mind. Nursery staff will liaise with parents daily as to when child was changed before entry to nursery. The time between nappy changes will not exceed three hours before checking or changing.
- Nappy changes are recorded on record sheets to inform parents on a daily basis.
- We encourage children to be as self - sufficient as possible and we positively encourage children to wash their hands after toilet or nappy change.
- Nappies, wipes and changes of clothing must be provided by parents.
SNACKS AND MEALS
- We follow Portsdown Primary School's policy for food and drink.
- We have facility to provide snacks. However, due to current situation with COVID19 we are asking parents to provide a healthy small snack for their child. i.e a piece of fruit or a dry cracker or biscuit.
- Healthy snacks are normally prepared in the nursery class base kitchen areas.
- We normally promote healthy eating and drinking and encourage children to try a range of healthy foods for snacks and milk or water to drink.
- Children have access to water at all times.
- Children are not permitted to have juice to drink at snack time.
- Hot lunch time meals can be ordered for children during term time.
- Hot lunch meals are cooked in Portsdown Primary School kitchens.
- All meals must be ordered and paid for by 9.10 a.m. on day of attendance. Fees are available on request. Special diets and allergies can be catered for.
- Children may bring a packed lunch. We encourage parents to ensure they provide a healthy lunch and avoid sweets, crisps, juice and fizzy drinks which can include a high number of colourings and additives known to affect moods, behaviour and healthy teeth development.
- We cannot reheat packed lunch meals.