Wind in the Willows is a home-from-home nursery in the heart of Milton, Portsmouth. We have separate rooms and areas for each age and ability range, all of which is based on one floor allowing all of our staff to get to know all children and work together to share their knowledge and ideas.
Our setting is based in an accessible-to-all building in a quiet area which is surrounded by large gardens. We are close by to a range of local facilities which we are able to utilise and integrate into our day to day activities such as St James Park, Milton Park and Bransbury Park; Milton Common and Langstone Harbour; the woodland area around St James'; Milton Market; community centres and children's centres; Beddow Library; and much more!
All of this allows us to ensure we are complying with EYFS and Ofsted requirements to support your child's learning and development whilst providing enriching and enjoyable experiences at each of their sessions with us.
We have security systems and procedures in place to ensure your child's safety and wellbeing at all times.
We often change the layouts and resources of our rooms to meet the needs and interests of the children, but in order to get a feel for our lovely nursery, have a look at our gallery here!
Tadpoles is the name of our Baby Room, where we work with babies from 3 months to approximately 16 months, depending on their developmental abilities. We work towards all individual children's routines, needs and interests, while also ensuring all children's development is worked upon in a variety of different ways. We work closely with parents to ensure all preferred techniques used at home are implemented in the setting, providing a home from home environment for the babies to experience. Our room contains a large range of different sensory resources for the babies to explore and learn through the world around them. We plan a variety of weekly activities relating to the EYFS, children's next steps and current interests. We ensure that we plan plenty of sensory and messy play activities for the babies to engage in. In our Baby Room, we also have an interests and routine board that details each individual child's routine and current interests so that we may incorporate this into their days at Wind in the Willows. This also provides all staff with the information they need about all individual children's needs and requirements to ensure that these are always being met. Our family wall contains pictures of the babies' families for them to admire while in the setting, providing them with reassurance and allowing them the opportunity to see their family whenever they wish. See more.
In our Toads Room, we focus on the children's interests and choices allowing them to choose their activities throughout the day. We have self-registration for our morning and afternoon welcome time where the children can recognise their own picture and put it on our board giving them a sense of belonging and building self-esteem. We incorporate all areas of learning into our room and have many areas including our role-play area, construction area, cosy area with books, puzzles and soft toys, small world area and physical play gym. We work to prepare children for the next step in their journey as they move up to the Two-Year Room by providing more focussed activities and set routines.
The Moles area consists of a light room with garden access, where the Two-Year Olds play! We also have a sensory room, which is turned into a comforting sleep room for afternoon naps. Our room is all about getting the children ready to move into the Preschool (Badger's) area when they are around the age of three (depending on their development) with a similar, but more loose, routine to the preschoolers. The majority of our day is made up of free play to support the individual needs of the children and all areas of the EYFS being available to the children at all times. Keyworkers plan fun and engaging activities based on children's interests and next steps to provide exciting opportunities for learning. We work closely with parents and carers and children's next steps are shared each half term so that these can also be supported at home.
The Badgers Room is for children aged 3 years right up to when they leave for school. We incorporate all areas of learning into our room and aim to provide opportunities for mathematics and mark-making in all activities. The Badgers Room is child-led and every day, each child choses something they would like to do and we make sure they get to do it! The children have their own pegs to help them recognise their names and each day will self-register by pegging their picture up on our board. We have tablets and a computer so that children can begin to learn about technology and use timers to encourage turn-taking and fairness. We focus on ensuring children are ready for school by offering structured play and learning opportunities and developing independence skills such as by having a water dispenser where they can help themselves to drinks and putting on and taking off shoes and coats by themselves. The children have access throughout the day to the garden, Cosy-Room and Role-Play Room which can be set up as a doctor's surgery, travel agents, home, school or anything the children like! We also use our kitchen to learn how to cook, bake and enjoy a healthy lifestyle and regularly enjoy lots of messy and creative activities. We make great use of our local community by going out and about on various trips which provide endless learning opportunities.
We are incredibly lucky to have a wonderful, large garden area surrounding the building with grass and patio areas. Almost all rooms have direct access to the garden and are able to free flow throughout the day. The children are encouraged to get involved with the gardening by planting their own plants and flowers; we are able to use this fantastic space by educating children about living a healthy lifestyle by being active and growing their own fruits and vegetables which can be enjoyed as part of a balanced and nutritious diet. We arrange visits with outside agencies, such as Active8, hold annual sports days and have a range of equipment (bikes, slides and scooters among others) to support physical development at all ages and stages. Our garden also provides excellent opportunities for play and learning including water and sand play; learning about science and the nature which surrounds us, such as by hunting for bugs and learning about their life-cycles; and exploring our senses, such as in our mud kitchen or by looking at, smelling and feeling flowers. We like to explore the outdoors in all weathers!
We are equipped with our own kitchen in which we are able to prepare fresh, nutritious meals everyday and have achieved a food hygiene rating of 5 from Environmental Health. We also incorporate our kitchen space into our play and learning opportunities with fun and educational activities such as messy play and baking. The fruit and vegetables which we grow in our garden are used in our cooking. Our Role Play Room is filled with open resources, giving children the chance to explore new roles which supports the development of social skills, builds the imagination and helps children to understand and develop emotions such as empathy.