Learning & Development

Our day nursery staff will support your child’s learning and development.

We are proud to offer two home from home style nurseries in Bishopston and Ashley Down, Bristol. Ashgrove Park is rated OUTSTANDING by OFSTED (July 2019) and Clyde House is is rated ‘GOOD’ with Outstanding (December 2016). You can read the reports here.

We aim to provide a stimulating, spacious and secure ‘home-from-home’ environment inside and out. This encourages our children to develop skills in the seven areas of learning as set out in the Early Years Foundation Stage:

  • Communication and language
  • Personal, social and emotional development
  • Physical development
  • Expressive arts and designs
  • Literacy
  • Mathematical development
  • Understanding the world

We also ensure our provision covers the Characteristics of Effective Learning: which are, playing and exploring, active learning and creating and thinking critically. Further information on the EYFS can be found on the Department for Education website. Click here to view.

In 2018 we moved away from static, set planing methodologies and a highly formal daily structure, to an approach called ‘Planning In the Moment’.

In the Moment Planning is a child-led learning approach, designed to give early years practitioners the freedom to extend a child’s interest in the moment rather than having to stop a child in their tracks while the practitioner takes them onto a pre-planned activity or has to complete paperwork. It’s also about creating a constantly changing environment that changes as the children do.

Children do not store up their questions for tomorrow. Being in the moment means practitioners are more likely to be ready with answers when and where they are relevant. Additionally, many of the children’s interests will be changing from week to week. By being ‘in the moment’, practitioners can observe and work on a child’s interests as they arrive, rather than turning towards a pre-planned task when those interests may already have disappeared.

The basis for all of this is that children have a natural desire to learn and explore. So instead of holding their hand through a variety of preset activities, you can allow them to find their own interests, and use this to enhance and build upon their existing knowledge. Child-led learning is particularly effective because it means children are engaged and involved. This is linked to better brain development in developing children.

Parents / carers are asked to complete regular update sheets on their child’s current interests to give practitioners deeper insights.

Additionally, preschool children take part in activities geared towards preparing them for school, such as phonics, letter writing, festivals from around the world, art and painting, cooking.

We provide a clear structure and consistent boundaries for children. We stimulate their curiosity and interests while giving them a sense of self-respect and independence in an inspiring, safe and secure environment.

We value parents as the primary carers of their children and listen to their views at all times. We encourage parents to participate and involve themselves in the nurseries as much as they are able, creating a confidence and continuity between home and nursery.

A parent’s view: ‘We have been extremely happy with the nursery, the staff are wonderful, they really get to know your child, and you, and the kids love them! They make a special effort to give the children a wide variety of opportunities such as Spanish, yoga, Emily the nursery bear and regular outings. They encourage parents to get involved doing show and tells and volunteering with outings / events with the children. The nursery also has opportunities to socialise with other parents and staff. The staff have been outstanding in looking after my daughter (who also has Special Educational Needs) they have been great with this and taking the time to create great home-nursery communication.’ Read more parent testimonials here.

As part of their learning and development, children at the nurseries undertake a range of local outings including walks and visits. Outings and visits are planned to complement and enhance the learning opportunities inside the nursery environment and extend play opportunities for the children outside of the nursery. In the past three months, children have gone to local parks, the local city farm, to Bristol Aquarium, and on shopping trips around Gloucester Road.

In addition, we welcome a range of external practitioners from time to time and, in the past year, the children have benefitted from Spanish lessons, guitar playing, yoga, drumming workshops, Chinese letter writing, visiting pets and healthy eating workshops!

If you wish to find out more about our nurseries, please do not hesitate to get in touch.

We really liked the flexibility of days that our child could attend. The sensory garden and the policy to play outside at least once a day no matter the weather was a real plus in our books. Our child loved the staff both in the baby room and toddlers. And we felt it was a fun and safe place for our son to learn and explore the world.