Information correct from September 2021
Thank you for showing an interest in Burnwood Pre-school. We know how important your child is and aim to deliver the highest quality of care and education to help them to achieve their best. This prospectus aims to provide you with an introduction to Burnwood, our routines, our approach to supporting your child’s learning and development and how we aim to work together with you to best meet your child’s individual needs.
We understand that one of the biggest steps for both a parent and child is the first day at preschool. Our aim is to make that transition as happy as possible by providing a welcoming and home-like environment for your child. Our staff are qualified and experienced in Early Years Education. They will provide your child with a stimulating curriculum that enables him or her to explore, play and learn in a secure and happy setting. We believe that a working partnership between home and preschool will nurture your child’s development. With that in mind, staff encourages parents to share their unique understanding of their child and to become actively involved in the preschool.
Our Early Years Principles:
The policy, practice, and provision within Burnwood Pre- School are based on the following principles:
- Education is concerned with the whole child.
- Parents are valued as their children’s first educators and are viewed as active partners in the continuing process of education.
- For young children, play is their right and is an essential and rich part of the learning process. Play is a child’s work.
- Acceptance, love, approval, encouragement and security are vital to the development of the young child.
- The child’s past experiences, individual attributes and abilities should be recognised, accepted and built upon.
- High quality interaction with skilled and knowledgeable adults is crucial to the child’s learning.
- To encourage children to be self-confident and to develop positive attitudes towards learning, other people and caring for their surroundings.
- To provide a happy, safe and secure environment where everyone is equally valued.
- To maintain a high quality of teaching and learning.
- To provide a broad and balanced curriculum which enables children to make progress and achieve their own individual best.
- To work together with parents and to foster positive links with the wider community.
Our Offer and Organisation
Our Preschool is open Monday – Friday during term time only. We offer a choice of morning or afternoon sessions. Our sessions are:
Morning Session 8:45 – 11:45
Afternoon Session 12:15 – 3:15
Children will be eligible for a place at our Pre-school if they are 2 years of age turning 3 that same academic year.
Our Pre-school offers 15 hours free early education places per week through the Early Years Entitlement grant. We look to expand this offer in January of each year to cover 30-hour placements for those who are eligible.
We pride ourselves on being a dedicated and highly enthusiastic team who strive to provide the best quality childcare. Our highly qualified and experienced team, which is led by members of the Primary School Leadership Team, consists of a Room Leader, 2 Pre-school Practitioners and a Welfare Support. Our staff hold OFSTED approved qualifications, current First Aid certificates and Safeguarding Children certificates. They attend continuous training courses and new knowledge gained from these training courses is then bought back to Preschool and shared with all colleagues. Our adult to child ratios are excellent with a minimum ratio of one adult to four under threes and one adult to eight three year olds.
Our Learning Environment
Our purpose-built Pre-school, which overlooks the Primary School grounds, provides a safe, caring and engaging environment where there is a wealth of appropriate equipment and support by qualified staff to meet the needs of your child. Children are actively involved in their learning through the medium of play. These play experiences are both carefully planned to create a challenging environment where development can take place and also open-ended to enable children to use their imagination. Children are given the opportunities to investigate, be curious, explore their environment both indoors and outside, share the world of books, music and drama, experience success and develop a positive attitude towards learning.
The environment is refreshed regularly. It is continually rich in materials and possibilities specifically chosen to inspire curiosity and to help the children move forward. Children's interests are identified through observing and listening to the children, and working together with their family.
Our Pre-school is very much part of the Primary school and as such children have access to its extensive grounds and facilities.
Experiences & opportunities
We know that when a child is fully immersed in 'learning by doing', it provides a deep level learning experience, which is longer lasting and valuable to the children's future as independent learners. Each child's life experiences are different. We aim to add richness and variety to existing experiences, using the world around us, culture & the arts to inspire children's desire to learn more. We encourage parents to share their skills & interests so our whole community can grow together.
Our Typical Day
This timetable gives you an overview of the layout of a typical day at our Pre-school. Occasionally unplanned events may occur requiring a change in the routine to make the most of the eventuality.
Our Daily Routine
8:45 – 9:00
12:15 – 12:30
9:00 – 9:15
Key-worker Carpet Time
(welcome song, visual timetable)
12:30 – 12:45
9:15 – 9:45
Child Initiated Leaning/
Adult Led Activities
12:45 – 1:15
10:00 – 10:15
1:30 – 1:45
10:15 – 10:45
Child Initiated Leaning/
Adult Led Activities
1:45 – 2:15
10:45 – 11:00
Motor Control Activity
(Squiggle while you wiggle)
2:15 – 2:30
11:00 – 11:30
Child Initiated Leaning/
Adult Led Activities
2:30 – 3:00
11:30 – 11:45
Preparations for Home
3:00 – 3:15
Our curriculum holds the themes and practices of The Early Years Foundation Stage at its heart. Young children learn most effectively through a balance of structured adult-led activities and child-initiated play. Our staff work as a team to plan for children’s learning in seven key areas identified within the EYFS framework, ensuring their skills are built progressively and with consideration of individual children’s needs and interests.
The seven areas of learning are:
- Communication and Language
- Physical Development
- Personal, Social and Emotional Development
- Understanding the World
- Expressive Arts and Design
Each session allows for plenty of free play with our highly qualified staff on hand to interact and support the children while they follow their personal interests. We ensure that there is a clear structure throughout each session and plan daily small group activities. We ensure that through all activities, children are highly motivated, are able to play and explore, are given opportunities to think critically and can communicate their ideas.
Our curriculum has a theme each half term, which we share with parents. While our themes are thoroughly planned and linked to all of the Early Years Foundation Stage areas of learning our practitioners are highly flexible and ensure our planning is personalised for each child within the setting to truly meet their individual needs.
Our Process of Transition and Settling In
Starting Pre-school is a big step, so we’ll do all we can to help your child settle in positively, happily and confidently. We’ll get to know them and what they like and don’t like. We’ll also make sure they get to know us and the other children here.
Our setting uses a key person approach. This means that each member of staff has a group of children for whom they are particularly responsible. Your child's key person will be the person who works with you to make sure that the care we provide is right for your child's particular needs and interests.
Settling in is unique to each child, so we’ll tailor a plan to suit your child’s needs. We find it works best to start with small visits, and then gradually extend them until your child is feels
Settling in can take time and commitment but don’t worry, we’re here to support you every step of the way.
The Learning Journey
When your child starts Pre-school we will begin to compile their ‘Learning Journey’ which is unique to them and is a celebration of everything they can do both at home and at Pre-school. It begins with the information you share with us and builds up during your child’s time with us.
Our reflective practitioners use information that we gain from observations, as well as from photographs or videos of the children, to document their progress and where this may be leading their future learning. We believe that parents know their children best and we ask them to contribute to assessment by sharing information about what their children like to do at home and how they, as parents, are supporting development.
We record our observations of each child using an online learning journey called ‘Evidence Me’. Observations are available for parents/ carers to view and comment on and parents can add to their child’s journey, uploading their own photos and observations. We make periodic assessment summaries of children’s achievement based on our ongoing development records. These form part of children’s learning journey.
The progress check at age two
The Early Years Foundation Stage requires that we supply parents and carers with a short-written summary of their child’s development in the three prime areas of learning and development: personal, social and emotional development; physical development; and communication and language; when a child is aged between 24 - 36 months. The key person is responsible for completing the check using information from ongoing observational assessments carried out as part of our everyday practice, taking account of the views and contributions of parents and other professionals.
Parents as Partners
We believe in working closely with families to provide the best possible care and education for each child. We aim to build on the experiences that you as parents provide for your children. “Treasured Moments” are a way that we share information between home and pre-school about your child’s interests and any learning and development that happens at home that they may not demonstrate in pre-school. When children start in pre-school, we ask you to fill in a form all about your child, what are their likes and dislikes and who or what is important to them. This is called a baseline assessment and the more information you can include on this form the better as it helps the staff get to know your child quicker and help to settle them into pre-school with ease. Working together we can help children to form a firm foundation and a positive attitude for school and later life.
The sharing of refreshments plays an important part in the social life of the children. Snack times are used to help children develop independence through making choices. We are committed to promoting healthy eating and feel it is imperative to maximise every opportunity to influence the children’s eating habits. We offer a healthy, nutritious snack in addition to a drink of milk or water. We understanding the importance of hydration on a child’s developing mind. Therefore, we provide every child with their own labelled water bottled and ensure it is readily available throughout each session.
Uniform is compulsory as we feel that it gives the children a sense of belonging. Our uniform is practical and looks very smart. It consists of:
- White polo shirt
- Black or grey trousers, skirt or pinafore (preferably with an elasticated waist)
- Blue jumper/cardigan (available with the school logo)
- Sensible black shoes (Fastenings such as velcro are best for children at Pre-school as it helps promote independence. Please refrain from shoes with laces).
Jumpers and cardigans with the school logo can be purchased from Smart Academy Uniforms.
To limit the amount of lost property, it is strongly recommended that all items be clearly named with indelible marker or name tags.
What to bring to Pre-school
Parents should provide their children with a small bag containing a full change of clothes in case of an accident. Children, who are not yet toilet trained, will need to be provided with nappies/ pull ups and wipes. Even if your child is fully toilet trained, spare clothes are helpful. Many of the activities in the Pre-school involve potentially messy materials such as glue, paint, sand and mud. Some protective clothing is provided but accidents do happen.
As the children have daily access to our outdoor classroom and surrounding grounds, parents must ensure that their children have appropriate clothing. During the Winter months, children will need a warm hat, scarf and set of gloves. To prevent school shoes from getting wet and muddy, a pair of wellies is always useful kept in school. During the Summer months, a sun hat and labelled bottle of sun screen is advised.
Every child has a named peg inside the classroom to store their belongings on.
We use a lot of photographs in Pre-school and throughout the school for assessment and display purposes and sometimes photographs are used in newspapers or on the website. When your child joins our school, you will be will asked to complete a photograph permission slip where you will have the option not to have your child’s photos included in any publications.
We place a strong emphasis on positive behaviour management. Our aim is to help our children become self-disciplined, accept responsibility for their own actions and respect others and their work. We strive to do this through the implementation of our Pre-school rules and working in partnership with our parents/carers.
Special Educational Needs
All children are entitled to a broad and balanced curriculum matched to their needs, abilities and aptitudes. If your child has additional or special needs or is disabled we will work together with you and other professional agencies in order to meet your child’s needs. Our detailed Special Needs Policy is available on request.
If your child has any medical need it is important that you keep us informed how we can support your child within the Pre-school environment and update information as required. This may require the completion of an Individual Health Care Plan. It is your responsibility to provide up- to- date and relevant information about your child’s needs. Please note that, except if part of a Health Care Plan, we cannot administer medicines to children.
Our Pre-School is committed to the health and safety of all children and staff that play, learn and work here. As such, it will sometimes be necessary to require a sick child to be collected early from a session or be kept at home while they get better.
If a child has had to go home prematurely due to illness, they should remain at home until they are better for at least 24 hours. If a child becomes ill outside Pre-School hours and needs to miss a session, you should notify us by telephone on 01782 235577. A message can be left outside of the opening hours.
Any infectious disease, such as chicken pox, occurs amongst the Pre-school children, the Pre-school will alert other parents/carers as soon as possible. When a case of head lice is discovered at the Pre-School, the child concerned will not be isolated from other children, and there is no need for them to be excluded from activities or sessions at the Pre-School. Other parents/carers will be informed as quickly as possible, including advice and guidance on detecting and treating head lice.
Attendance and Punctuality
Regular attendance at Pre-school has been shown to have a significant impact on children’s achievement. Attendance at Pre-school establishes good habits from an early age and contributes to the development of a positive approach to school and education. If your child is unable to attend their usual session, please contact us as soon as possible to let us know the reason for the absence and the expected length of absence.
When your child joins Pre-school you will be asked to complete a contact sheet. At the end of the session, your child should be collected by a responsible person whose name must be on the sheet. Should an emergency occur and you are unable to send a nominated person, please telephone the School Office to advice of any change. If someone different is collecting your child, you will need to set up a secure password. We will not allow your child to leave the premises with anyone other than those authorised to do so.
Please make sure that you bring and collect your child at the correct time. Being late can upset your child and cause them to miss out on valuable time with their key-worker.
Our open-door policy means we actively encourage regular dialogue with parents and carers. We value your feedback and regardless of whether comments are positive or negative, we promise to listen and take on board your views. Should you have a question, complaint or suggestion that cannot be answered by one of our key-workers, we encourage you to speak to the Pre-school manager. If informal discussions of a complaint or problem have not produced a satisfactory resolution to the situation, parents/carers should follow the school complaints policy.