Cross Gates

Primary School

Aspire, Learn, Succeed

Cross Gates

Primary School

Aspire, Learn, Succeed


Celebrating International Mud Day!

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We are learning the story of The Little Red Hen in our Talk 4 Writing sessions. Why not have a go at reading the story from the text map with your child - they should be able to teach oyu some of the actions and words to tell the story!

Text Map - Little Red Hen

We had so much excitement in Nursery this week when our eggs in the incubator began hatching! The children have been fascinated by the eggs cracking and watching each chick eventually hatch. On Thursday afternoon the chicks were strong enough to move from the incubator to their ‘Brooder’ box and the children enjoyed getting it ready with sawdust, food and water. This also meant the children could handle the chicks now and they were all brilliant at following the instructions to keep the chicks safe whilst they held them.

The chicks are hatching! 🐣

Another action packed week in Nursery to start off the new half term! On Wednesday, the children took part in a ‘Dough Disco’ world record attempt via zoom. They were very excited by seeing all the other children taking part on the screen.

We’ve been busy going ‘wild’ outdoors for our 30 Days Wild Challenge with the children cloud watching, tree hugging, squelching in mud, bug hunting and identifying wild flowers! We are looking forward to more wild fun next week. Do let’s us know if you have taken on any of the ‘wild challenges’ at home and upload photos and videos to Tapestry.

Due to the hot sunny weather this week, in our Talk 4 Writing sessions we have been learning a non fiction text about how to keep safe in the sun. Please see the text map below.


The children have been making lots of soup in our mud kitchen so we added some tomatoes to the play and they really enjoyed cutting and chopping them. 

Throughout the month of June we will be taking part in the Wildlife Trusts 30 Days Wild Challenge. It would be great to have families joining in at home through the holidays and over the weekends too. If you are interested in joining in at home then simply follow the link below to sign up for your digital pack and have fun sharing in the fun outdoors!

This week the children have been exploring the vocabulary of tall and short. The children enjoyed looking at photographs of some of the world’s tallest buildings then creating some tall buildings and towers of their own. They loved using the unifix cubes to make the tallest towers they could and compare them with their friends.

We had lots of fun with our messy mark making play in the soap flakes on Friday! Lots of the children are now able to make marks resembling letters in their names and it’s lovely to see the looks of concentration turn into pride on their faces as they write and draw.

The children were also very excited to see the beans we planted in bags on the windows have now grown lots more roots and some shoots. Some children created very detailed observational drawings before we planted them out in pots. The children are hoping to see giant beanstalks in the outdoor area when they return from half term!

Exploring ‘tall’

Messy Mark Making!

No such thing as bad weather at Cross Gates Primary School! 🌧

Eid Mubarak! Enjoy the celebrations! From the Nursery children and staff x

We have been exploring the children’s interest in ‘Blossom and Flowers’. They really enjoyed creating observational paintings of bluebells using the watercolour paints. It was wonderful to see the concentration on their faces and the attention to detail they put into their artwork. As part of their exploration of the new media, the children were quite fascinated by changing the depth of colour as they added more water. One of the children also commented “it doesn’t go brown like the other paints” when they mixed several layers of different colours on top of each other. 
We added a small vase of Gypsophila at the play dough area. Some children made ‘gardens’ and ‘flower forests’ while others explored the prints left in the dough by the small blossom. 
We will continue to explore this interest further next week.

Painting Bluebells with watercolours - such concentration!

Beautiful Bluebells

Flowers in the playdough!

Text Map - Jack and the Beanstalk

Jack and the Beanstalk - Our version of the story to match the text map

This week we have been learning to subitise in Maths. This means that we look at a small amount and can say how many there are without counting, we just recognise and know the amount. For example we often subitise when looking at amounts displayed on dice. The children are getting really good at recognising amounts of 1 and 2 and many can subitise 3 now too which is fantastic. At home you can practise this together by playing with dice, making your own flashcards with 1, 2, or 3 dots displayed in different positions or by hiding 1, 2, or 3 small objects like sweets or buttons under cups and revealing them to your child for just 2 seconds then hiding them and encouraging your child to say, draw or show on their fingers how many there were. You can then check by counting together. We would love to see any photos or videos of this on Tapestry!

We have continued to retell the story of The Gingerbread Man in our Talk 4 Writing sessions and the children have had a go at drawing their own text maps. Next week we will be beginning to learn the story of Jack and the Beanstalk so you may want to read the story at home together this weekend. If you don't have the book, there are some nice story telling videos on cbeebies and youtube.

In Phonics we have been exploring making different sounds with our voices and reading a score of picture symbols telling us which sounds to make. The children thought this was hilarious because we all sounded so silly. I have added some of the scores to read below so you can have a go at making silly voice sounds together. Ask your child to tell you where to start reading from too as this is something they have been practising whilst reading the symbols!

The children have been quite fascinated by the beautiful blossom that has appeared on the trees recently. They have been comparing the colours on different trees and watching it fall from the trees too with some comparing it to snowflakes. In our Nature Play group this week the children were collecting handfuls and throwing it into the air like confetti.

Blossom Confetti!


The children were so excited by the hail stones that were falling this afternoon. They were fascinated by the sound and very eager to try to catch the hailstones in their hands and in their mouths! They quickly noticed that they were tiny balls of ice and observed closely as they melted in their hands. Some of the children scooped up little mounds of the hail stones and moulded them together to make bigger 'snowballs' before they melted into water. 

Nature Play!

In one of our music sessions we had a go at this activity - following the score on the screen to play along with body percussion. Why not click on the link to have a go at home? I promise you will enjoy it but the music will be in your head all day long!

Ralphy came up with a brilliant question in our Nature Play session this week - "Why are some sticks green inside?" This is something we decided to investigate further back in the classroom so the children collected as many sticks as they could to take back and explore.

As the children explored the sticks they began to notice that some sticks had bits of green on the outside but it wasn't the same as the green on the inside and that some sticks were just brown on the inside. They enjoyed snapping the sticks to see inside and began peeling some of the bark back to look underneath it. I provided them with some vegetable peelers to peel more bark strips off and they really enjoyed this. They listened carefully about how to use the peelers safely and took great pride in using them independently. 

Text Map - How To Wash Your Hands

Following on from our non-fiction Talk 4 Writing instructions, this week we learned a new set of instructions on 'how to wash your hands'. The children did very well with this and they had remembered all the time connectives & actions we used for our last set of instructions: First, Next, After that, & Finally. 

In Maths we have been exploring number 4. The children have been counting out 4 objects, writing 4, drawing 4 things, investigating how 4 can be made from other numbers and which numbers you can find in 4. 

This week the children have had a lovely time making things to give to their Mums for Mother's Day. They made lovely cards and also took little gifts home - sunflower seeds planted in pots to grow at home. We would love to see photos uploaded to Tapestry of how your sunflowers grow. Our Talk 4 Writing this week has been based around instructions for how to plant seeds and we have been using the text map below to learn the instructions.

Talk 4 Writing - Text Map

Lets Count!

We have also been taking part in a Maths project linked to the Census, providing opportunities for the children to practise counting whilst having a say in the decisions being made in our day to day nursery life. This week the children chose which book they wanted to read first at snack time by voting. They each had a multilink cube which they placed in a hoop next to the book they were choosing and then counted which had the most. Sometimes we made the cubes into towers to see which was the tallest as another way to check which had the most votes.


Let’s Count!

We had a lovely time celebrating World Book Day today The children enjoyed making bookmarks and talking about their favourite books at home. We read 6 different story books throughout the course of the day then the children voted for their favourite which would be read again at home time. We made a block graph to show the results:

Bad Cat by Nicola O’Byrne was the winner! 

We hope you enjoyed learning all about Chinese New Year last week. Thank you for all the lovely pictures you have sent of your children's learning, it's lovely to see what you and your children are getting up to. Our last week of home learning includes a variety of activities which we hope will keep you all busy until we see you all back in Nursery next week.

The children loved finding out about Chinese New Year this week and they became completely fascinated by dragons! So we made dragon puppets, read lots of stories about dragons, made a giant dragon to dance with outside, found out about different types of dragons in ancient Chinese legends and drew our own magical dragons. In between all this they had lots of fun getting messy with noodles, rice and the outdoor water. It was a great first week back 😃

Chinese Dragon Dancing

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Messy Play - Noodles & Rice 🥢

We have been learning all about Chinese New Year

Welcome back!


We hope you have had a restful half term and are ready for more exciting learning, either with us at Nursery or at home with your families. This week in Nursery we will be celebrating Chinese New Year and counting to 3 and finding groups of 3 in Maths. We will post some pictures of what we have been learning and if you are at home don't forget to send us your pictures via Tapestry.

Make a Chinese Lantern

CBeebies: Preparing For Chinese New Year - Let's Celebrate

Abbie and her brother clean the house in preparation for the Chinese New Year celebrations.Visit CBeebies at to find even more ...

CBeebies: Celebrating Chinese New Year - Let's Celebrate

Abbie takes to the street with her family for a parade and firecracker display.Visit CBeebies at to find even more fun games an...

CBeebies | Chinese New Year (Lunar New Year) | Zodiac Story

Learn how the Zodiac years were named by the Jade Emperor.Visit CBeebies at to find even more fun games and videos for your pre...


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What’s happening outside? Is it Spring yet?

This week is Children’s Mental Health Week. In Nursery we have been talking about feelings in our Keyworker groups. The children have spent time asking each other how they feel and why. We have been using our ‘Mood Stars’ to help explain different feelings. They are so good at naming all the stars now and choosing the star that matches their mood. 

Talk through the Mood Stars with your grown up at home. Which Mood Star matches how you feel today? We have made a game for you to play at home. Look at the slideshow below and pause on each photo. Can you name the missing Mood Star? 

Feelings Game

Shape Sorting

We had great fun on Monday playing a shape sorting game. It gave the children a chance to show off everything they have been learning about shapes and their properties. They named, categorised and sorted the shapes with very little adult support. Why not have a go at this activity at home using shapes you’ve cut out. 😊

This week at Nursery we are focusing on our book Brown Bear Brown Bear... in Talk 4 Writing.We will be reading it and starting to think about “Who comes next?” and using the picture cards to sequence the story. If you are at home everything you need is on this website. In Maths we will continue to think about Shape and Pattern. Send us pictures of any interesting patterns you find at home or any of your other home learning. We love to see what you are up to. 🌈

Actions to tell the story

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This is a little video to share the actions we have been learning to tell the story this week. We have been learning Makaton signs for the colours and animals. Apologies to everyone as I thought I’d uploaded a video sharing this earlier in the week but it appears something went wrong and it didn’t post to the webpage.

Actions to tell the story (continued)

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This is a short video with the Makaton signs for the last few animals in the story. The children did so well learning the signs from last week 😊 Keep practising the actions as you read the story together and you’ll soon pick them up. You could choose 2 a day to focus on.

Brown Bear, Brown Bear What do you see?

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Home Learning Challenges for the week beginning 1/2/21

Patterns that I found where I live

Animal Patterns Activity

Rhyming Pairs Activity Sheet

Rainbow Colours 🌈

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Watch what happens when I did this experiment with Smarties and some water. Maybe you could try it at home too?

Exploring colour with paint outside on a rainy day! 🎨 🌧

Bird Spotting & Hot Chocolate 😊

Can you spot any shapes in these pieces of art by Wassily Kandinsky?

Magical Colours

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A little experiment to try together at home as part of our exploration of colour.

This week we are reading the book 'Brown Bear, Brown Bear What Do You See?' by Bill Martin Jr & Eric Carle. 

Have a look through the play activities on our Home Learning Challenge Sheet attached below. In Maths, we will be finding out about shapes and colour. We have created 2 outdoor 'hunts' linked to colour and shape for the children to take part in whilst on a walk in the local area and we have suggested some creative activities you might like to try together at home too. In Phonics, we will be continuing to learn about and explore rhyming words. We will be completing the same activities in Nursery. Please do share your play at home with us through photos and videos on Tapestry - we really do love to see them!

Phonics - I Spy Rhyming Pictures

Virtual Zoo Day!

Make A Snow Kitchen

Why not explore making snow cakes and pies outside today in your own ‘Snow Kitchen’. You could experiment with adding food colouring too! 

It's Snowing! 

How lovely to see all the snowflakes falling this morning! We've got some snowy day challenges for you to explore with your grown ups today:

1) Making Foot Prints - who has got the biggest footprint in your family? Who has got the smallest? What shapes can you see in your footprints?

2) Writing in the snow - find a stick and explore making marks in the snow with it. Can you draw lines like a number 1? Can you draw dots? Can you draw a long line? Can you draw a wiggly line? Can you draw a zig zag line? Can you write any letters from your name?

3) Make snow angels with your family. What can you tell us about the size of them?

4) If enough snow falls, we'd love to see if you can make some jolly snowmen!


5) Watch the snowflakes falling, can you move like a snowflake? How does it make you feel?


6) Can you think about and come up with your own ideas to answer these questions:

How does the snow feel? What does it sound like? What do you think you should wear to play out in the snow? Why? Tell us what happens to the snow if you hold it in your hand? Why do you think this happens? 


Click on the link below to watch a lovely story about A Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats.

We've missed you all so much this week and we're really looking forward to seeing some of your photos and videos. Have fun playing in the snow!

Happy New Year to all our Nursery children and families! Although it is definitely not the start to the year we had hoped and planned for, we will endeavour to work in partnership with you to ensure the children continue accessing playful learning opportunities to support their development. 


This week we were really looking forward to hearing all about the children's Christmas experiences in our 'Keyworker Talk Time'. Even though we can't do this in person, we would still love to hear from the children so please could you film your child telling us about some of their favourite memories from the Christmas holiday and upload this to Tapestry?

We will begin our weekly home learning challenges and keyworker phone calls from next week - w/c Monday 11th January.



We have had such a wonderful week in Nursery! The children have been so excited everyday about Christmas and all the festive, fun activities we’ve been doing. It really has been magical! Everyone had great fun at our parties and the children were thrilled with all their little treats and chocolate gifts. As always, their dance moves were something very special and they had lots of fun playing musical statues and joining in with the Freeze Dance song. On Friday afternoon we enjoyed our Christmas Elf Hunt. The children found all the elves and then got a lovely surprise when they discovered the last elves under our Christmas Tree holding a present from Santa. It was a tunnel for our movement area 😃

We would like to say a big thank you to all our families for the many cards and gifts we’ve received. You’re all so kind and we hope you have a wonderful Christmas with your brilliant children. See you in 2021! 


Nursery Christmas

Enjoy the videos and music you love, upload original content, and share it all with friends, family, and the world on YouTube.

Dear Santa Text Map

Decorating our Christmas Tree

Making Christmas Dinners in the Mud Kitchen!

Christmas has arrived at Cross Gates Nursery! The children had a wonderful time decorating their Christmas Tree and we have been busy making a start on our Christmas cards and decorations to take home - what busy little elves! The making of our Christmas cards did involve painting our feet so they will definitely need a good scrub in the bath - we did wash our feet after but a bit of paint may still remain between our toes! The children have also been working hard to learn our Talk4Writing Nativity Story. This is the text map we use to tell the story and the children have been learning actions to match the pictures and help remember the words. I have also uploaded a video of myself (a bit further down the page) reading the text map with the actions so you can practise together at home.

In Maths this week we have been exploring the number 3. Can you spot 3 things anywhere in your house? Can you organise your teddies into groups of 3 or set up a tea party for 3 toys?

We have continued to explore 'body percussion' (making sounds with our bodies) as part of our learning in Phonics. We have been singing a song called 'Make your sound the same as mine' and the children have been listening to and repeating back the sounds the adults made - of course we made each sound 3 times to keep reinforcing our learning on 3 too. 

The song is sung to the tune of Mary had a little lamb and I have shared the words below so you can play together at home.

"Make your sound the same as mine, same as mine, same as mine.

Make your sound the same as mine and make it after me: * * * " (adult makes 3 sounds eg claps, tapping knees, stamping feet, tapping teeth, rubbing hands...)

We had lots of fun using our tapping sticks to explore 3 in this song too (see link below). Why don't you try to join in with the song at home? If you can't find any sticks then try using spoons or even bananas or carrots!

Planting bulbs

We love rainy days!

Jumping up and down in puddles is so much fun!

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The Nativity Story with T4W Actions

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This is the simplified version of the story that the children are learning in our ‘Talk 4 Writing’ sessions. Please practise together at home using the text map shared further up the page. Thank you!

Is your child due to start school in September?

You can now apply for a primary school place for your child for September 2021. Please visit or telephone 0113 222 4414 for more information. It is so important that you apply for a school place before the deadline of 15th January 2021. Please contact us if you have any question or need support with your application.

Happy St Andrew’s Day 



We have designed our own kilts to celebrate St Andrew’s Day. We talked about how to draw a tartan pattern using straight lines going one way then the other way. We had lots of fun. We hope you like them.

This week we have been learning the nursery rhyme 'Humpty Dumpty'. The children really enjoyed this rhyme and they even made their own Humpty Dumpty's and built walls for them to balance on. It was lovely to hear them singing the rhyme as they played. Why not decorate some boiled eggs at home to make Humpty Dumptys and explore different ways of building walls for him. I wonder how you could make the wall safe for Humpty Dumpty?

We have also been learning about number 2 this week. Can you find sets of two things at home? The children enjoyed playing 'is it 2?' This was a game where they had to look at pictures and decide if it showed 2 or not and show their opinions with their thumbs. This is a good game to try at home. 

The children had a great time on 'No Pens Day', exploring different ways of mark making - lots of which were quite messy! Please see the photos below.

World Nursery Rhyme Week

This week is World Nursery Rhyme Week. Launched in 2013, World Nursery Rhyme Week promotes the importance of nursery rhymes in early childhood  development and education. Did you know that if children know 8 nursery rhymes by heart by the time they are 4 years old then they are usually among the best readers and spellers in their class by the time they are 8 years old? (Mem Fox, Reading Magic) The initiative is open to parents and EY practitioners worldwide and downloadable resources are provided free of charge. 


The chosen 5 nursery rhymes this year are:

Miss Polly Had A Dolly

Hickory Dickory Dock

The Wheels on the Bus

Old MacDonald

5 Little Speckled Frogs



In Nursery, our Talk 4 Writing this week will be based around Hickory Dickory Dock and I have attached a copy of our text map below for you to practise with your child at home. I have also attached a link to the World Nursery Rhyme Week website should you wish to access any of their resources. Happy Singing!



Hickory Dickory Dock

Odd Socks for Anti-Bullying Week

School Admissions

You can now apply for a primary school place for your child for September 2021. Please visit or telephone 0113 222 4414 for more information. It is so important that you apply for a school place before the deadline of 15th January 2021. Please contact us if you have any question or need support with your application.

Wearing Spots for Children in Need

Threading with ‘wiggly worms’!

This week the Nursery children have been learning about number 1. They have been practising writing the number, making the number with objects, sounds and pictures and they have been counting out 1 item from a group. It would be great if you could practise writing the number at home, encourage the children to make pictures about 1 and ask the to find 1 of a variety of objects. Please upload any notes or photographs of this learning onto Tapestry and we can share it with the rest of the class in school - the children are always so proud to share and explain their learning at home with their friends.


Learning about number 1

What a busy week we have had in Nursery! The children have enjoyed exploring different ways of using paint to create ‘firework’ pictures. They loved flicking the paint in the outdoor area and another favourite was rolling a marble round a tray to leave colourful paint trails on the paper. This method was quite tricky and it was great to see the children concentrating so hard and persevering to keep the marble on the tray and get it to roll through the paint.

Our love of digging for worms has continued and we now have a special ‘worm project’ space set up in the outdoor area for the children to closely observe the worms they find. They have enjoyed counting how many they can see in the tuff tray and they are so excited by the worms wriggling in their hands! 
We now have a new ‘Den Building’ area outside and the children have been very involved in creating cosy dens to shelter from the November weather!

Marble rolling

Paint flicking

Worm project

Welcome back! We hope you all had a lovely week at home together. Our nursery rhyme this week has been Miss Polly had a Dolly. The children have been singing the rhyme using the text map to help them remember the words. Why don’t you practise reading the text map together at home? Can your child remember the words to match each picture?

Miss Polly had a Dolly

What’s inside the pumpkins?

Pumpkin maths!

This week the children have continued to be very excited about the pumpkins and Halloween. They were very curious about what might be inside the pumpkins and some children thought it might be toys! We opened them up to find out and whilst there were no toys inside, they were very excited by the seeds and ‘slime’ they found. They all love singing ‘5 little pumpkins in a pumpkin shop’ and setting up a shop with the 5 munchkin pumpkins we have. Some children have been able to do some brilliant mathematical mark making through drawings linked to this rhyme too! Why don’t you try singing it together at home? It’s the same tune as ‘5 currant buns in a baker’s shop’, you just change the words slightly! 
The children also continue to be fascinated by digging for worms and have spent lots of time engaged in this activity in the outdoor area. Can you find any worms together in your garden?

Painting pumpkins 🎃

Printing ‘Twinkling Stars’ 🌟

This week in Nursery the children have enjoyed printing twinkling stars and making glittery play dough stars. They have explored the concepts of big and small through this play too. Their interest in and live if sticks has continued as they have been busy painting gold and silver sticks then arranging them in frames to create pictures.

Some children have been talking about Halloween and pumpkins and some parents have shared observations from home linked to this so we have set up a ‘Pumpkin Discovery’ station. The children loved using the magnifying glasses to look in detail at the pumpkins and their drawings reflected their observations of the ridges and ‘lines’ they spotted! Next week we will explore inside the pumpkins - I wonder what we will find? 

Water Exploration

Text map - Twinkle Twinkle Little Star ⭐️

This week in Nursery the children have continued to explore the provision with a particular focus on water. They have been learning how to put on the waterproof suits and have been creating their own ‘muddy puddles’ to splash in - see the videos below. We have been learning the nursery rhyme ‘Twinkle Twinkle Little Star’ and will continue to work on this next week with a focus on identifying the pictures from the text map and putting them in the right order. Our text map has been added below so have a go reading/singing it together with the actions at home. The focus of our learning in maths has been sorting, categorising and matching objects to help with tidying up in the classroom. At home, you could sort and tidy the washing together, organising into whites, colours and dark washing piles and sorting clean washing into groups of who it belongs to and matching pairs of socks! Could you count how many items each person has to find out who has the most? We would love to see your photos and observations of any home learning uploaded to a Tapestry 😃

Making muddy puddles

Muddy Puddle Fun!

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Wiggly Worms!

This week the children have been very settled and gained lots of confidence in Nursery. They have enjoyed exploring the setting, particularly the outdoor area and had a great time looking for worms and playing in our 'Mud Kitchen'.

We have been learning the Nursery Rhyme 'Incy Wincy Spider'. Our text map is attached below. We will use text maps throughout the year to help us recite rhymes and stories to develop our language and reading skills. Why not try singing the rhyme together at home and upload a video to Tapestry? Or maybe explore making/drawing spiders together or looking outside at where spiders live. We'd love to see your observations, pictures and videos from home!

Incy Wincy Spider

Mud Kitchen

Making dens to shelter from the rain

Family Photos

Please can all parents upload a family photo for their child to Tapestry so it can be added to our Home Corner display? Each child has their own photo frame displayed on the wall and we would like them to have photos of their families in. It doesn't have to be the full family, just a selfie with a sibling or parent or grandparent would be lovely. If you are struggling to upload the photo, please just ask a member of staff at drop off/pick up. Many thanks to the parents who have already sent these in - the children have really enjoyed sharing them and have been very proud to see them on the wall!

Enjoying Lunchtimes!

Fun in the Movement Area

Nursery Team


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Welcome to our Nursery Class page. Nursery is all about learning through play. The children are encouraged to find out new things by exploring the world around them and asking questions. Nursery is a safe, friendly place where children feel happy to take risks and engage in new experiences. All staff strive to build strong relationships with their key children so that they flourish in our setting; children are supported to become "confident communicators" so that they can express themselves effectively to others. We pride ourselves on providing an inviting and engaging learning environment that promotes the Characteristics of Effective Learning and support independent and collaborative learning across all 7 areas of the curriculum.

Please check our page each week to share in our achievements, find out what we have been learning about in school and get ideas for ways in which you can support learning at home.