Little Acorns Childcare is held in a well-lit, well-ventilated and spacious hall within the Beacon Church on Oakes Road. It is set up Monday to Friday for the sole purpose of running a childcare facility.
Health and safety assessments have been carried out and passed, and are updated regularly to maintain our high standards of a safe learning environment.
The premises have been made accessible for everybody, with wheelchair access, accessible toilet and baby changing facilities within the building.
The childcare facility is set up in such a way to ensure that resources are accessible to all the children, providing equal play and learning opportunities.
The Early Years Foundation Stage Framework
Your child’s learning and development are of paramount importance to us. At Little Acorns Childcare, we follow guidelines and statutory requirements set out by the Department of Education which is the Early Years Foundation Stage Framework (EYFS).
The EYFS is a legal framework stating the requirement for all early years providers to follow. It sets out:
- The legal welfare requirements that everyone registered to look after children must follow to keep every child safe and promote their welfare.
- The 7 areas of learning and development which guides professionals in their engagement with children throughout their play and activities as they learn new skills and knowledge.
- Assessments that will tell you about your child’s progress through the EYFS.
- Expected levels that your child should reach by the age of 5, usually the end of reception year. These expectations are called the Early Learning Goals.
At Little Acorns, we use this framework to support each child by providing learning opportunities based on their interests and individual needs, and by observing and assessing what and how your child is learning and developing.
Some of the ways we support the EYFS within our activities include:
- Personal, Social and Emotional Development – Key person approach, building relationships, care, comfort and support
- Physical Development – Exploring the environment, healthy snacks, learning about how the body works, supporting the development of motor skills
- Communication and Language – Talking, singing, story time, following instructions, developing our own rules in play
- Literacy – Sharing stories, rhymes and poems, staff model positive language, enabling the child to speak freely and have their voice heard
- Mathematics – Shape sorting games, puzzles, songs, number games, time recognition
- Understanding the World – Cooking activities, gardening including growing our vegetables, recognising and accepting various cultures and festivals
- Expressive Arts and Design – Creative activities including gloop, shaving foam, crazy soap, paint, sand, junk modelling and messy play in our fabulous mud kitchen
How we plan for your child’s Early Years Education
At Little Acorns we strongly value the unique child and believe that every child is an individual who will learn and develop in their own unique way. Each area provides children with a variety of self-selection resources which promotes individual choice and creativity and encourages independence. Staff are passionate and are trained to recognise ‘teachable moments’ which can be extended through language, resources and imagination to create a learning opportunity for all children. ‘In the Moment’ means to follow a child’s lead and recognise those ‘teachable moments’ along the journey. Staff use their knowledge of the EYFS to support and extend the learning as well as to promote our fundamental British values.
‘In the Moment’ allows no forward planning, but planning in the moment experiences which are an extension of a child’s interests observed at that moment in time. Each child’s key person will ensure a variety of provisions and open-ended resources are continuously available at all opportunities to encourage creativity in play as well as supporting individual next steps and interests.
Government Funding for 2, 3 and 4-year-olds
All 3 and 4-year-olds are entitled to 15 hours funded childcare per week, for 38 weeks of the year. This funding begins from the term AFTER your child turns 3. You will be given a grant claim form which must be completed and given to our staff as soon as possible to allow us to claim the funded sessions on your behalf.
Some 2-year-olds are eligible to receive up to 15 hours funded childcare each week for 38 weeks a year. This begins from the term AFTER your child turns 2 and is subject to you meeting certain criteria.
All parents are recommended to visit the website www.childcarechoices.gov.uk to register and find out what help if any, you are entitled to.
Some 3 and four-year-olds may be eligible to an additional 15 hours funded childcare per week for 38 weeks a year, providing you meet certain criteria. At Little Acorns, we will endeavour to offer any additional hours to eligible children providing we have availability. To be considered for any additional funded hours above the universal 15 hours entitlement, parents must provide us with a 12-digit eligibility code which we must be able to verify. This code can be accessed via the Childcare Choices website above. The 12-digit code, once verified, will allow us to offer any additional hours available from the following term.