This month our new Holiday Club, offering places to any local school children, continued to be very popular. The children went to places including the cinema, Bolton Museum, the Fire Station and spent a lot of time outdoors in the Forest. In the last week they created their ow version of The Greatest Showman. We are now taking bookings for Half-term and a few days over the Christmas period.

Staff have been continuing to carry out Home Visits to children from families new to Nursery.
Wise Owl staff had an evening meeting to discuss their aims for the coming year.
Forest School sessions continued for Wise Owls and these included woodworking skills and campfires.

Some of the Wise Owls had their final forest school session with Miss Tracy. They went to Purl’s meadow and received a letter from Walter Wise Owl asking to make him
some owl friends. They each had a wooden log and carefully used a hammer to attach milk bottle lids for eyes and various materials to create an owl. The children then finished off the session by toasting pizza baguettes on the campfire which they prepared themselves.

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Other Wise Owls had their final woodland learning session with Miss Laura. The children each had a treasure map and had to follow the clues to find teddy bears hidden in the forest. Each teddy bear had a pack of puzzle pieces which the children added on to their maps. Once all the teddy bears had been found their map revealed a secret message to go to the allotment to claim a prize. The children found a golden box which was full of magic stars! The children displayed excellent teamwork during the session.

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Employee of the month

August 2019

August 2019 Blog (1)

Miss Maria
Going above and beyond what is expected of her.

Other Nominations for August 19
Miss Chloe G – Showing willingness to take on extra tasks
Miss Abi – Showing commitment and supporting others
Miss Meg W – Supporting nursery
Miss Julie G – Showing commitment and dedication in her role at holiday club
Miss Tracy- Taking on other tasks
Miss Sophie – Taking on extra tasks
Miss Hannah G – Being enthusiastic and dedicated
Miss Terri – Supporting others
Miss Suzanne – supporting parents with good advice

Wise Owls welcomed Reception teachers from local primary schools wanting to say Hello! to the children starting in their classes in September.

We had four young people from Rivington and Blackrod High School with us gaining some work experience. They were very good ambassadors for their School.

We organised a ‘Getting to know you’ session for our new Ducklings and their parents. This was a chance for babies to have a play and make new friends, and for their parents to chat, ask questions and get to know each other.

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Benjamin Rabbit from Kearsley West School came on his holidays and stayed with us at Croft House for two weeks. Everyone loved him and it gave the children an opportunity to learn about looking after an animal.

We took delivery of some more new items for outdoors, including a beautiful little wooden bench and mud kitchen for the Ladybird play area.

Miss Laura had her Level 3 Forest School practical assessment and passed all the tests.

Staff took part in PREVENT training (preventing vulnerable people from being drawn into terrorism)

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Our new Holiday Club, offering places to any local school children, opened mid-July. This has already proved to be extremely successful and popular.

Staff have been continuing to carry out Home Visits to children from families new to Nursery.

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The Wise Owls went to the meadow for a Woodland Learning session. Along the way they found some giant footprints with a letter from the Giant asking us to make some mud cakes. The children worked hard to dig for mud and stir with a spoon and they decorated their cakes with twigs, grass and leaves

Employee of the month:

Miss Chloe G
Having a positive approach to learning new skills and displaying a mature attitude in the workplace.

Other Nominations for July 19
Miss Kerry
Miss Toni
Miss Abi
Miss Terri

All helping to support the kitchen team

Miss Rachael – Supporting other rooms
Miss Hannah G- Taking on extra tasks in her own time
Miss Courtney- Providing a stimulating environment for the children
Miss Beth- Proving exciting, structured, activities in the Wise Owl room

We had some very enjoyable ‘Donuts with Daddy’ sessions with Busy Bees and Wise Owls to help celebrate Fathers’ Day. More photos available here.

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Several staff attended training:
Abi attended a course on and Emotion Coaching/Managing Behaviour.
Emma D. attended a course on supporting children who stammer.
Heather, Abi and Aimee attended the Nursery World Exhibition at the Trafford Centre and attended seminars on Preparation for Ofsted, Mental Health in the Early Years and Smiles and Laughs with young children. They saw some fantastic resources and purchased some items for their rooms.
Janet attended courses on Preparation for Ofsted and Prevent.
All staff attended an in-house training session on Preparation for Ofsted.
Laura attended a week-long Forest School Teacher training course at Moss Bank Park. She will be fully qualified once she has created a detailed portfolio relating to forest school experiences and skills, a 2-day practical assessment course and a 2 – day outdoor first aid course.

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Laura also attended a Moderation Session with other early years colleagues looking at how we assess children’s achievements.
Kerry attended a Heritage Fund small grants workshop.

Children from Horwich Parish School visited us once again to share some stories with Wise Owls.

We purchased some outdoor equipment for the Ladybird outdoor play area and Janet bought something she has always wanted – a very large drum which accommodates at least 8 children. This will be fantastic for development musical conversations and aiding social interaction.

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Wise Owls had a very enjoyable day at Smithills Farm. They went on a tractor ride, fed a variety of different animals, held some chicks and rabbits, rode on a donkey and watched some cows being milked. The children displayed impeccable behaviour!

Highlight of the month was our Family Fun Day, for which we had wonderful weather. The Duck Race was lovely and so well attended – we raised approximately £220 for Meningitis Now. The Sports activities were fabulous with the children displaying passion, resilience and a keen desire to ‘have a go’. Parents were also keen to get involved.

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Employee of the month:

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Miss Laura
For giving detailed feedback to parents and introducing new creative and exciting activities to extend children’s learning.
Other Nominations for June 2019:
Miss Sophie – Being a good role model in the room and growing both in confidence and development as a room leader.
Miss Aimee – Supporting on swimming days
Miss Heather- for supporting on swimming days
Miss Sarah – Supporting Busy Bees (when it was the Wise Owl trip to the farm)
Miss Tasha- For supporting the Duckling room (when her colleagues were absent)
Miss Jacky G – Supporting in the kitchen
Miss Chloe G – Supporting in the kitchen
Miss Emma D – carrying out duties over and above what is expected
Miss Lucy – Giving positive feedback to parents

This month we took delivery of several new outdoor items for the Ladybirds’ play area. We are currently upgrading this space to ensure we maximise its use.

The builders completed the new play area (John’s garden) adjacent to the car park and although we know it will evolve further over the next few months, it is now ready for use – by our before and After School Children 7.30 – 8.45 and 3.45 – 6pm, and our older Nursery children from 9 – 3.30. We are very proud of the area which offers outdoor dining areas, planting spaces, a boat, a Living Learning Den, which is due to have a wildflower roof shortly, a sand pit, yellow brick road, lots of areas for dens and other features.

Croft House Nursery Blog May 2

Forest School and Woodland Learning sessions continued to be enjoyed by some of the Wise Owls and we have had campfires, collected mini beasts and played forest games.
Children from the Ladybird Room enjoyed river walking.

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We have continued with Safeguarding level 1 training with our apprentices.
Janet attended an Early Years briefing given by Bolton Early Start. Topics such as Preparation for Ofsted, Early Years Foundation Stage guidance for parents, safeguarding and staff training opportunities were covered.
Some staff had their bi-annual appraisals.

Employee of the month:

Croft House Nursery Blog May

Miss Terri
For going above and beyond what is expected and being a positive role model.

Other Nominations for May 2019
Miss Brenda – Taking on extra tasks
Miss Chloe G - helping in the Kitchen
Miss Vicky - continued support to students in the Ducklings
Miss Rachael – working extra to support colleagues
Miss Toni- supporting other rooms
Miss Tori- supporting Wise Owl on swimming days
Miss Rae – supporting

April 2019 Blog

At the beginning of this month our Before and After School club moved to the upstairs rooms at the new Croft House Nursery building. The children love the new areas and are enjoying having more space to play and socialise.
before and after school club
In the second week of April we had a very happy, successful time caring for a select group of school children on their Easter break. They spent every afternoon outdoors in the forest. We are now taking bookings for children, from any local schools, who need Holiday Care in July and August this year.

The builders continued to work on the outdoor area adjacent to the car park to create an exciting area for the children at the Before and After School Club. Younger children will also be able to access the area at certain times during the day. The builders are also working on the ramp alongside the newly developed building which will eventually become a pathway to the single storey arched building (to be called Marion’s Den in Memory of Janet’s Mother who used to work in the building when it was owned by a cellophane manufacturer many years ago)
Kerry attended an update on Safeguarding Level 3 training and some of the apprentices undertook Safeguarding training Level 1.
As Easter, and the concept of new life was approaching, we had visits from very young chicks, rabbits and guinea pigs. We also had some caterpillars and discovered how they eventually become beautiful butterflies, and we went to the forest to find tadpoles.

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Wise Owls learned about the local custom of walking up to Rivington Pike on Good Friday and children in other rooms took part in Easter egg hunts, made Easter cakes and pursued other Easter customs.
Staff were given new, more robust identification badges which are clearer and help parents to recognise their names.

Employee of the month April 2019

Miss Tori
For going above and beyond what is expected and showing dedication in her role as a Key Person.

Other Nominations for April 2019
Miss Chloe (Butterflies) Always meeting the children’s needs
Miss Courtney – For working extra to support the room
Miss Hannah G – For continued support to others
Miss Chloe (Wise Owls) Being diligent in her role.
Miss Danielle (Ducklings) Supporting others
Miss Toni- Putting other needs first
The Wise Owl team for supporting Miss Lauren T
Miss Jodie –A successful first observation
Miss Deena – Passing her Level 3
Miss Sophie – Working extra to support colleagues
Miss Emma J/ Miss Vicky – working together to solve a challenge.