At Little Owls our focus is on the individual needs and interests of every child that attends our setting. We focus activities in such a way that each child is able to develop at a rate which is suitable for them. The overall structure of the day here remains the same as we understand that a secure environment for every child is created when they know what to expect and how to behave and follow a simple but familiar rhythm during their day with us. Consistency and continuity for children is key.
With the age of the children in mind and ensuring each stage of development is met, we encourage and enable children to develop, explore, learn and create in a way that is right for them. Getting to know each child individually is key for our nursery practitioners and playing with them ensures every child is fully engaged in an activity that interests that individual child. With the focus on fun we gently encourage them to extend their skills and expertise. Each child has a “Key Person” who ensures their individual needs are met.
We understand how important outdoor play is and wherever possible this is catered for. With a wealth of activities outside to access and water and sand play daily (regardless of the weather!) we ensure children benefit from these developmental activities at every stage.
Our morning starts with breakfast for children who are with us during the early part of the morning and finishes by approximately 8.30am. Carefully planned activities are chosen that meet EYFS criteria and different areas of play suited to age and developmental needs are on offer. Our children are encouraged to join in and select an area they particularly enjoy.
We always encourage information sharing between our nursery practitioners and parents/carers. We appreciate that dropping off time is a vital time for any additional information about our children to ensure we plan their day appropriately. Everything from how well a child has slept through the night to whether they are unsettled for any reason or have a new toy they are particularly excited about – we want to hear about it.
During the morning drinks and a healthy snack will be served and we make every effort to ensure this is a sociable time for the children, understanding how important this aspect of their social development at Nursery is. Water is available throughout the day and is both offered to our younger children as well as being freely available to our older children to help themselves to, thus encouraging independence.
Lunchtime varies in time from room to room but generally speaking is served between 11.30am and 12 noon. Here at Little Owls we feel it is important to eat in a sociable and enjoyable environment and our practitioners engage with the children and also eat with them when possible to ensure mealtimes are relaxed and fun. Parents often comment on how pleased they are not only with the range of healthy meals their child will eat whilst at our setting but also how enjoyable it is when enjoying lunch with their friends.
Sleep is a very important aspect of our children’s requirements and a lot of thought goes into ensuring children get the sleep they require, depending on their age. We work closely with our Parents/Carers to establish a sleep pattern that fits in, as much as possible, with how you manage your child’s sleep at home. We have a designated cot area for our under 1s, providing the much needed dark and quiet space that younger babies need.
As a general rule older children tend to sleep once during a day mostly after lunch but we will always be flexible dependant on your childs needs. Our rooms are set up so that children can sleep on rest beds within the room and a quiet space is designated for this very purpose. With their own rest beds and bedding children can sleep when they need to and remain supervised at all times. As each child is treated as an individual they are free to bring in a special blanket or cuddly toy that is available to comfort them at sleep time.
Mid-afternoon we serve a light healthy snack and refreshments to the children often consisting of seasonal fruit, water and home-made cakes.
We serve a light tea at approximately 3.30 – 4.00pm for children that are staying with us in the afternoon/evening. Our menu is displayed daily and just like lunch, tea changes daily. This could consist of something such as wholemeal sandwiches or pittas or, in the winter, a warming home-made soup with fresh bread.
When parents/carers arrive to collect their children any information about the child’s day, important messages and art-work to take home will be passed on by our Nursery Practitioners.