Nursery is organised so children have time to be involved in adult directed activities and in their own initiated activities. We involve the children in their learning and let them know why they are doing something. Children are encouraged to make decisions and solve problems, to initiate, plan, carry out and review their activities. The children become more independent, acquire a desire to explore and learn, and develop skills, which will enable them to become successful students as they grow older.
There are several elements within the daily routine:-
Circle Time: 9.15am and 1.15pm
Children and staff come together in either the sun room or the star room for circle time and register (their registration room). We will discuss the events in the children’s lives and nursery life and a short learning session (planned around one area of learning per week in order to consolidate key skills) will take place. On a Wednesday, children take part in Phonics activities to increase their listening and attention and to develop skills within Early Reading.
Staff plan each week for an exciting indoor and outdoor focus activity. The activities are linked to children's learning needs and reflect their current interests. Staff are skillful at recording children's interests and these reflections are used to inform the focus activities. A previous example... Children were enthused by the real vegetables provided in the Home Corner and by the carrots that we had harvested in the garden - this promoted lots of play and talk focused on cooking. The indoor focus activity that week was making carrot and potato soup! Children are encouraged to join in these focus activities.
Child Initiated Activities
Staff engage in skillful interactions with the children whilst they play in continuous provision, outside and inside. Staff know their children’s targets and differentiate their questioning and input to the needs of each child. Children learn much more when they are playing. OFSTED (2013) praised our staff for these interactions.
Our Nursery Environment
Each week, staff record their observations and interests of the children. This information is then used to enhance the environment so that learning is purposeful and exciting! For example, if children are enjoying pretending to bake cakes in the sand, staff would add cupcake cases, baking utensils etc.
Story Time: 11.45am and 3.45pm
Story sessions are planned for each week - books are chosen to focus on children's current interests and reflect Literacy objectives. Children are split into two groups for story, one in the Sun room and one in the Star room. We read and discuss stories, poems and information books. The children are picked up by parents and carers at the end of the session from their story room.