Introduction

At Bright Beginnings we pride ourselves on our care and learning. Each child is assigned to a key person whose role is to help ensure that every child’s care is tailored to meet their individual needs. The key person also helps the child become familiar with the setting, offer a settled relationship for the child and build a relationship with their parents.

We provide two balanced and healthy daily snacks for children attending a full day at the nursery. Fresh drinking water will be constantly available and offered to the children and individual dietary requirements will be respected. Where appropriate we will carry out a risk assessment in the case of allergies.

Early Years Foundation Stage

There are four guiding principles which shape practice in early years settings:

  • unique child
  • positive relationships
  • enabling environments
  • learning and development

There are seven areas of learning and development that shape educational programmes in early years settings. Three areas are particularly crucial for igniting children’s curiosity and enthusiasm for learning, and for building their capacity to learn, form relationships and thrive. They are:

  • communication and language
  • physical development
  • personal, social and emotional development

As Practitioners, we also support children in four specific areas. These are:

  • literacy
  • mathematics
  • understanding the world
  • expressive arts and design

Forest School

Bright Beginnings is part of the Clifton Early Years Partnership, which is made up of local schools, nurseries, playgroups and other Early Years settings. In 2011 the partnership was awarded a Lottery Grant to develop an area of land situated on the Clifton Backies Nature Reserve. The grant has been used to help set up the Clifton Early Years Forest School, an innovative educational approach to outdoor play and learning.

The philosophy of Forest Schools is to encourage and inspire individuals of any age through positive outdoor experiences. By participating in engaging, motivating and achievable tasks and activities in a woodland environment each child has an opportunity to develop intrinsic motivation, sound emotional and social skills.

Forest Schools has demonstrated success with children of all ages who visit the same local woodlands on a regular basis and through play, who have the opportunity to learn about the natural environment, how to handle risks and most importantly to use their own initiative to solve problems and co-operate with others.

Play based learning

We aim to support all children attending nursery to attain their maximum potential within their individual capabilities. A personalised record of each child's development is maintained, showing their abilities, progress, interests and areas needing further staff or parental assistance. We acknowledge that children learn in different ways and at different rates and plan for this accordingly.

The staff are very aware of the importance of a positive play environment for the child, so they may develop good social skills and an appreciation of all aspects of this country's multi-cultural society.

We promote the relevant frameworks and curriculum set by the Department for Education to support and enhance children’s learning and development through play-based activities. We develop tailor-made activities based on observations which inform future planning and draw on children’s needs and interests. This is promoted through a balance of adult-led and child-initiated opportunities both indoors and outdoors.

Steps to Quality

Bright Beginnings Nursery has been awarded Step 3 in The Yorkshire and Humber region “Steps to “Quality” Assurance Scheme. This final step celebrates top quality practice and builds on the previous two steps. It covers the way the nursery evaluates and continues to plan its service to promote and maintain quality. There are five standard areas within each step:

Setting management, Staff development, Environment, Meeting individual needs and Relationships

Steps to Quality links closely with National Standards to support childcare and education providers in meeting Ofsted’s requirements.

Millie's Mark

In July 2017, Bright Beginnings Nursery was awarded Millie's Mark, which is  backed by the National Day Nurseries Association.  

The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) guidelines, which childcare settings in England are required to follow, currently state that just one person with a current paediatric first aid certificate must be on the premises and available at all times when children are present or on outings. (DfE 2017, page 22)

Millie's Mark is awarded as a special endorsement to childcare providers that go above and beyond these minimum requirements by having 100% of staff trained in paediatric first aid, and also ensuring that everything learned during the course is kept alive and in the forefront of practitioners’ minds so that they are confident, ready and capable.

By gaining the Millie's Mark accreditation, we provide reassurance for our parents that all our childcare practitioners know what to do in a paediatric first aid situation. It acknowledges that children’s safety is at the forefront of our nursery’s mind when we care for children.

 

Millie’s legacy

Millie’s Mark is named after Millie Thompson, who died after choking on food at nursery in 2012 when she was just nine months old. 

Millie’s parents, Dan and Joanne Thompson, founded Millie’s Trust and have successfully campaigned for changes to first aid requirements for childcare providers.

"Millie’s Mark is our gorgeous daughter’s legacy, and to see the development of a voluntary scheme mark introduced into nurseries is an achievement not just for us, but for parents everywhere. We put our children into the hands of nurseries and we expect they will be cared for in the best possible way. A nursery achieving Millie’s Mark is an exceptional achievement for not only the nursery but for the children and the parents too.

The achievement of the mark acknowledges that staff would be confident in maybe one day saving a child’s life if they needed to. Confidence is a key factor in the administration of first aid and Millie’s Mark allows nurseries to feel confident in their own team.