Nursery Opening Times
Nursery opening times are 8:00am - 5.45pm Monday - Friday, excluding public and Bank Holidays and the three working days between Christmas and New Year. Full day sessions are offered, although half day (4 hours) sessions are occasionally available upon request. Breakfast is provided up to the age of 18 months.
We are lucky as a day nursery to benefit from integrating Montessori methods into our daily routine. The Montessori Method is an educational approach that encourages independence and allows a child to develop in a natural and individual way.
Our set-up goes one step further in that a child can choose to participate in the Montessori provision as and when they like. In practice, they end up experiencing a wide range of activities and concentrate on what they need to be concentrating on at the right time for them.
Children have ‘sensitive periods’ when they spontaneously soak up and learn certain things. The Montessori Method caters for this because they can choose and complete exercises at their own level and in their own time.
Our practical life section is full of everyday approaches where children learn pouring, washing, cleaning, dusting, tidying and fine motor skills, which they love!
A nursery is only as good as the staff that run it and we have a very dedicated team of staff, many of whom have been with us for many years.
We are proud of our very low staff turnover - it’s unusual. We continually receive extremely positive feedback from students on work placement and occasional visiting staff, as to how much they enjoy working at the nursery.
When recruiting a new member of staff we look for something special in the candidates which will complement our existing team. Our fair selection processes identifies the very best applicants, who are fully vetted before their employment begins.
"Our son loves going to Lake House. He learns so much thanks to the varied and structured curriculum - all cleverly disguised as fun activities that he very much enjoys.
The staff are absolutely wonderful. They always ensure we’re kept up to date with our son’s progress, and have fully supported us when we have wanted to make progress on specific development needs such as walking and potty training.
The onsite chef makes plenty of varied and nutritious dishes, which encourages our son to try new foods. In fact, I think he eats better than us!"
Christine Westcott – Marketing Manager
Every staff member has something unique that they can offer, but what they all have in common is dedication, kindness and a genuine love for working with young children.
Much thought is put into the diet provided by the nursery. We are aware of the latest advice given by the Government and aim to follow it as much as possible. We have a qualified Cook who prepares a wide range of tasty dishes using fresh produce.
We aim to provide a diet rich in fresh fruit and vegetables.
We use wholemeal bread, rice and pasta, and virtually no artificial additives.
We aim to use low amounts of salt and sugar.
We use organic stock cubes that contain no Monosodium Glutamate (unlike OXO and other cubes).
All of our cakes are home-made and less sugar is used than the recipe dictates.
We ‘hide’ vegetables in soups, casseroles, bolognese, curries, and pilaffs.
Fresh fruit and vegetables are prepared for the babies and they snack on rice cakes, vegetable sticks and fruit.
Fresh fruit is served mid-morning and with afternoon tea.
Salad items are included with afternoon tea, i.e. carrot, cucumber, celery sticks and baby tomatoes.
A ‘sweet tooth’ is not encouraged! We do not offer any sugary drinks, but encourage children to drink water.
Special diets are regularly catered for.
Afternoon tea is served late by most nursery standards; this best serves the child and parent in case the children go to bed early or fall asleep on the way home.
The staff sit and eat with the children at lunch time and tea time and good table manners are encouraged. Meal times are a social occasion that the children enjoy and most children end up eating a wider variety of foods with their peers than they might do at home.
Outdoor Play Area
We have a secure outdoor play area with plenty of play, numeracy and literary equipment and a good covered area with tables and benches.
This provides scope for imaginative play and the development of physical skills, both of which are fun and promote self-confidence.
The children participate in gardening and grow herbs and flowers, which encourages their curiosity of the natural world around them.
All year round, the children may join in selected activities in the garden including sand and water play, watering the flowers and exploring nature.
Music is very important to us and we expose the children to a wide range from the baby room onwards. We play classical, traditional, multi-cultural, and nursery rhymes both as an activity and as background music.
We now have staff who have completed training in Makaton and it is widely used throughout the Nursery.
At circle time the children sing and sign their good morning song. The babies are also taught signs for 'please', 'thank-you', 'more', 'milk', and 'water'.
Settling in Procedure
We offer a unique, tailor-made and gradual settling in procedure of up to 5 settling in visits - included in the registration fee.
New babies and children are given up to one month of settling in time. We work in liaison with parents and introduce the child gradually until they are happy and settled.
We believe that this is a very important time for new babies and children, which is why we prefer children to settle in gradually over a period of days or weeks. This is arranged with the member of staff concerned and the manager. It varies from one family to another, as each child’s needs vary.
We contact the parents one month before their child is due to start. On the first visit the parent is introduced to their child's Key Worker and they go through the child's routine in detail with them. This ranges from stages of eating and sleep patterns, to likes and dislikes. We then start with a one hour visit and arrange the days and hours to suit the parent. Hence begins the 'settling in' period.
This period is just as important to the child as it is to the parent. If we feel the baby/child is unsettled we make the visits more frequent but for shorter periods. Our aim is to make this transition from home to nursery as happy as possible, and with limited upset.
We find that by the end of the settling in period the baby/child is happy and settled, and the parent can return to work knowing this.
We don't know of any other nursery that offers such a gradual introduction to nursery life, and we believe that this approach is by far the kindest - taking into consideration each child's individual needs, every step of the way.
Early Years Foundation Stage
There are seven areas covered by the early learning goals and educational programmes:
Personal, Social and Emotional Development
Understanding the world
Expressive Arts and Design
Caring, dedicated staff
Flexible hours by arrangement
More than one room for each age group, which offers variety
Separate, secure outdoor play area
Access to Information Communication Technology (computing)
Music time with instruments
Practical Life Section (Montessori)
Ball Pit and indoor play equipment
Music & Movement