• "Staff have expert knowledge of the areas of learning and provide very rich variety of well planned activities."

  • "Staff place a strong emphasis on nurturing children's personal, social, emotional and physical development and their communication and language skills"

  • "There is an excellent balance of adult-led and child-initiated activities and staff are staff are skilled at giving just the right amount of help to promote the children's creativity"

  • "Children exude happiness and high levels of self-esteem and staff nurture individuality."

  • "Children are motivated and independent learners and are highly confident."

  • "Children demonstrate high levels of independence. They take turns and share equipment and are very polite and kind to each other. Staff are extremely effective at role modelling good behaviour and show high expectations of the children."

  • "Management ensures that all staff follow a path of professional development. This enabling them to continually improve their knowledge and experience, giving children the best possible chance of reaching their potential in learning and development."


Life at Oak Cottage

Settling in at oak cottage - Daily Routines - Children Under 2 Years

Key person and settling in

When your child starts at Oak Cottage they will be assigned a member of staff who will become their key person. The role of the key person is to help your child become familiar with the setting and help you and your child feel safe, secure and welcome. Your child’s key person will be responsible for ensuring that your child’s care is tailored to meet their individual needs and share information with you.

Your child will be allocated a key person before they start at the setting taking into account the sessions they attend and the needs and wishes of both you and your child. (From time to time for various reasons the key person may need to be changed. Consultation with you will always take place in this circumstance).

We are flexible in our approach and strive to develop a relationship where information is shared in order to deliver a personalised and appropriate plan for your child’s wellbeing, care and development. There will be opportunities to come in and spend some time together at nursery during ‘stay and play’ sessions to become familiar with staff and the setting. These sessions can be extended if needed.

It is normal for it to take time for some young children to settle. We recognise that this may be a distressing time for both the child and parents and will work on a settling programme that meets your individual needs. We have strategies for settling that include:

  • Extended free ‘stay and play’/settling sessions
  • Staggered sessions
  • Early collection times
  • Individual photo books/wallets with pictures of your child key person to talk about at home
  • Comforters/toys/photos from home
  • Individual visual timetables
  • Home visits

Things you need to bring to nursery:

  • Nappies and wipes (if needed)
  • A change of clothes
  • Packed lunch (if needed)
  • Wellies/wet weather gear (can be left at nursery)

For detailed information about life at the nursery, including our daily routine, opening times, fees, and policies and procedures please download our prospectus.

Children Under 2 Years

Our younger children are greeted by their key person and welcomed into their base room at the beginning of the session. Here they are able to explore their surroundings in a secure and familiar environment and have opportunities to interact with the world around them through active, sensory and exploratory play. Used flexibly during the day, our younger children have periods of time together and in mixed age groups with the over 2’s, providing them with opportunities to learn and develop with their peers downstairs.

Children can enjoy a variety of learning experiences taking into account the holistic nature of learning and development at this age including active, sensory and creative play – much of which is floor based. The younger children follow a structured yet flexible routine, taking into account their natural rhythm of active and resting times. Children are able to sleep in cots or on beds and have their own bedding and comforter/soothers made available to them.

Younger children access our beautiful south facing garden every session with a suitable, well planned outdoor environment including soil pit, sandpit, watr trays, play house and climbing frame. They also have opportunities to use the ballpit and soft play area.

Daily Routines

Example of a nursery session at Oak Cottage. Morning and afternoon sessions follow a similar routine. Times are approximate and flexible:

8.30am Welcome/Base Rooms Children freely explore the environment and have opportunities to become involved in activities and experiences on offer. Planned activities are based on observations and reflect the children’s current needs and interests. Younger children enjoy some time together in their base room.

9.15am Hello/circle time – (younger children snack) Children come together for a group welcome

9.30am Free flow/Garden/Snack Children access activities inside and out. We encourage children to be outside as much as possible in a variety of weathers! Please feel free to bring/leave raincoats and wellies Children choose when to have their snack and can access the snack table throughout this period.

11.30am Songs/Rhymes/Music and Dance - Younger children may spend time in their base room

11.45am Home/Lunch for children staying until 1pm or all day


Settling in at oak cottage - Opening times and prices - Exclusion Period for illness - Admissions - Early years grant - 2 year old funding