A Year At Our Nursery

We thought it might be interesting to start our next blog as we mean to go on. We have a whole new academic year ahead of us. A fresh start of possibilities for our children, staff and nursery and we are very excited about what the year ahead may bring. 

Following on from Anna Ephgraves book 'A nursery a year in action' a well loved book by our staff. We thought it would be great to document what we will be thinking about and doing each month here at The Learning Tree. 

As our parents are aware we follow the principles of ''In the moment planning''. Sam has made a display in the parent's foye on this if any parents would like to learn more. And our staff have enjoyed training sessions from Anna Ephgrave in the past. Anna is assistant head teacher for the EYFS at Carterhatch infant school, graded outstanding. Prior to this she was an advanced skills teacher, leading and developing a very successful early years team for over 20 years and has written several early years books. 

We have had many children and families start with us this month. Lots of children have had home visits and have then come into enjoy settling in sessions. This is how all the children start their journey with us and we find it the most positive way to begin a trusting process of getting to know our families and helping our children feel safe, secure and most importantly excited to start at our setting. 

For children who may take a little longer to settle we have a special settling in box (please see us if you would like to borrow this for your child) Also we use visual timetables to help your child understand the day what happens next and when their day will end and mummy and daddy will come back. 

As we begin the year we look at our enabling enviroment. We want to ensure all our areas are well stocked and equipped ready for the children and that it is not too overwhelming for them, especially those who will be experiancing nursery for the first time. We find when our rooms are well organise in this way the children are in control of their learning. They are able to select the area they wish to play in, find the resources they need and know how to use them. We have many open ended resources, which give endless possibilities to engage the children's play. During the year our cohort of children change and with that we ensure we reflect on our enviroment to ensure all areas are proving productive learning opportunities for the children and we change any we feel are not. We are starting to shadow where our resources go so the children are able to independently tidy up and put the resources back in the right place. 

We focus on teaching the new children our routines such as washing our hands before we have our snack and having a rest after lunch to let our food go down. 

We are now in week 4 and after a busy start the nursery is now feeling calm and settled. The children now understand the routines of the day, they have made good bonds with their key persons and key families and their personalities are really starting to shine through as their confidence builds. We have been looking at the changes that are happening all around us as the season changes and have enjoyed some lovely autumn walks harvesting summers treasures. We have collected conkers, leaves and blackberries for cooking. We have worked with clay and explored many different textures in our baby room.