We would like to welcome both you and your child to Bell Day Pre-school. We hope that the following information will be useful to you, but if you have any further questions, please feel free to talk to any of our staff. Our pre-school is located at the Lord Butler Leisure Centre which is a five-minute walk from our main nursery building. Here the children have free-flow access to an outdoor area. We ensure that the children’s environment is one that will optimize learning and encourage independence. Our pre-school room is solely for children starting school the following September. All activities and learning opportunities are designed to help children prepare for school. We accommodate up to 30 children per session and we work whenever possible to a ratio of 1: 6 if not a 1 : 8.
Our pre-school team consists of all different backgrounds, personalities, and experiences making our approach cover all angles of learning and interests. Lily is our Room manager she is supported by Sophie, her Deputy, and a dedicated team of enthusiastic educators. The team is well established and have a great work ethic, building positive relationships with the children. The team includes - Sam, Denise, Holly, Lottie and Yvonne.
In The Moment Planning
We have recently adopted the approach of in the moment planning (ITMP) within Bell Day Pre-school. This approach allows us to use the children's individual interests for the basis of our learning and day to day choices. The children lead the way with what they would do and where they would like to go with staff alongside them, navigating and extending their learning. Each child has a one focus week throughout the half-term where all practitioners observe their progress and monitor their development, where it is recorded. With less paperwork the staff have more time to engage with the children and develop a strong bond with all individuals within the setting, allowing them to input 'teachable moments' into all activities to scaffold their play.
Every half term you will be provided with a 'home learning letter', dictating what we will be exploring with your child and things you can do to support their learning at home. Each week, Lily will post on Famly the plan for the following week to help prepare the children over the weekend break and so you are aware of what your child will need on their pre-school days. Lily is often posting activity ideas on Famly for you to use at home and post in your child's journal so we can see what you have been up to.
We enjoy inviting parents in for special events such as Mother’s/Father’s Day, Nativity plays, Sports days and other times. We love parents coming in to share a special skill that they have or to share experiences unique to their culture. Again, with the current situation we are trying our best to incorporate all of these lovely events through zoom.
We are super busy down in the pre-school and engage with plenty of extra activities to build their confidence, stamina, individual development, and physical abilities. On a weekly basis we attend an optional swimming lesson at the Lord Butler Leisure Centre with a swim teacher, a Forest School session led by our forest leaders, and engage with a Spanish lesson too. Alongside this we are often out and about exploring our natural environment and visiting local places, with the great opportunities to venture further on our minibus.
Preparation for school Transition
Our aim for children who leave us for school is that they are confident, curious and ready to learn even more! We encourage our pre-schoolers to be independent and able to communicate with adults and their friends. We do our best to make sure that by the time the children start school they have good pencil control (and hopefully write their own name) can recognise numbers, at least up to 10 and count to this confidently. Have a love of books and recognise some sounds, to name just a few of the skills in which we feel are important for their future progress. In Pre-School we do our best to help the children to have as much fun as possible, as we believe that as a result of this they will gain in confidence and will want to learn.