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Welcome to Tiny Steps at Staynor Hall Academy

About us

In our school, we are very proud to offer Tiny Steps Academy’s two-year-old provision within our Early Years Foundation Stage. This offers 24 places in total with 12 children in a morning session and 12 children on an afternoon, within the class organisation we call Tiny Steps.

Children come into our provision the term following their second birthday. Depending on availability, children may also able to attend the setting as soon as they are two, however, these sessions must be paid for.

This handbook aims to give you information about our setting, however, should you require more information please do not hesitate to contact us.

 


Our Aims

Tiny Steps Academy’s two-year-old provision is a very special place full of learning, laughter and friendships where all children are happy, feel safe and valued.

We provide the best possible educational provision in a stimulating and creative environment.

We pride ourselves on providing a safe, supportive and fun learning environment in which children can explore and discover the world.

We believe that children learn best by direct experience and interactions between people and their environment, through established routines and inspirational activities.

We value the strong relationship with our local community and we encourage a positive partnership between children, their home, the provision and the wider community who help us to support the children in our care, to develop into individuals who will lead happy and rewarding lives.

Tiny Steps is often a child’s first venture alone into the world outside their family home. We believe in nurturing each child’s unique qualities and potential as well as supporting each family through building strong relationships.

We believe our Tiny Steps Academy should be an extra special place where each child can take their own steps together to explore and discover the world. What children experience in Tiny Steps can create strong and lasting foundations on which to build in later life. It is essential that the experiences are of the highest quality.

 


 Location

The Early Years Foundation Stage Unit is part of the main school building and Tiny Steps can be accessed through the main playground gate at 8.30am and 3.30pm. If you are dropping or picking your child up between the hours of 9.15am and 3.15pm, please access the nursery through Tiny Steps back door and ring the buzzer on the left-hand side.

The children have access to a wide range of outdoor resources throughout the session which is securely enclosed. Admittance to the setting is monitored ensuring the safety of your child.

 


The Staff 

Our Tiny Steps team members are:

  • Miss. S. Carrier:      Early Years Teacher
  • Miss. K. Powell:       Level 3 Practitioner
  • Mrs. L. Murray:        Level 3 Practitioner
  • Mrs. N. Coulson:      Level 3 Practitioner

Tiny Steps staff regularly attend training courses to further develop their understanding of childcare and to keep up to date with relevant information.

The staff build upon what children already know and can do, promote their self-confidence, autonomy, independence and fulfilment. Children have opportunities to play, learn and develop as they experience a range of adult led and child initiated activities.

Staff make regular assessments of children’s learning and development. This information is used to ensure that future planning reflects identified needs. Using individual profiling and tracking, children’s learning in monitored throughout EYFS and school.

We offer children rich experiences in a variety of situations, in learning environments that simulate and invite them to engage holistically and emotionally both indoors and outdoors.

 


Parental Involvement

At Staynor Hall Academy we recognise the importance of parent’s involvement in their child’s development, we, therefore, encourage parents to take an active role in their child’s learning.

By working in true partnership with parents we aim to provide a stimulating, challenging environment which is a warm, friendly extension of home, where children and adults can explore, have fun, play, talk and learn together, developing as happy, confident and independent individuals within their community

Home Visits – Tiny Steps staff make a home visit to all new families. This an informal, friendly opportunity to say hello, introduce ourselves and get to know a little bit about the child and his/her family. Parents often talk about this visit in a positive way and seem really happy to meet staff on their own ‘home ground.’ This first meeting is where the relationship and partnership begins.

STEPS (Sharing Together Every Playful Step) – we then invite parents and carers to STEPS sessions within the Tiny Steps provision for one hour. These can be over a period of five weeks or one week, depending on what time of year your child starts our nursery. The STEPS sessions are a time for you and your child to learn and explore in their new environment. It is also a time for parents and carers to meet other adults and children who will start nursery at the same time. It is a great opportunity for both children and adults to make new friends. The family worker also provides information to the families and activities they can do to help support their learning at home.

 


 When your child starts:

After the STEPS sessions, we discuss with you when your child will start and how long they will attend each session. We listen carefully to your views and the needs of your child. We are very flexible with our start dates and times. All children are different – some may settle in very quickly, whilst others need a little more time.

We also acknowledge this separation can be as upsetting for parents as it is for children and so we offer comfort and patience to all during this transition time. Time spent on settling in is time well invested for the children’s security and confidence.

On arrival, we ask that children collect their name card and check in on our feelings board. This gives us an opportunity to talk to you and your child about how they are feeling.

It is really important that children are collected on time, as searching the sea of faces for your mum or dad, nana or grandad, and finding no-one there can be really upsetting when you’re only two or three years old. We ask that parents inform us of the people who are most likely to collect their child.

In the interests of safeguarding all our children, we ask parents to provide a password at the beginning of the year for all adults to use when collecting children at the end of the session. Anyone the staff don’t recognise, will not be allowed to leave the building with a child unless they provide the correct password.

There is also a notice board upon entering the setting as well as our website which keeps you updated with all the latest news and events. We are always available to discuss your child at a convenient time for both yourself and the school.

 


Online Learning Journeys

Parents are able to access their child’s new online learning journey! Tiny Steps staff will create individual ‘learning journeys’ for your child through a piece of educational software called ‘EExAT’. By logging on with a secure username and password you will be able to view all of your child’s observations, photographs and even videos from their time in Tiny Steps.

Staff will reference your child’s learning to the Early Years Foundation Stage profile so you will know which area of learning your child is achieving in and the age-band they were working in for that activity. All of this information is stored on a highly secure server which is monitored closely.

In addition to viewing our contributions, we encourage you to add to it by uploading photos and comments about your child and their achievements at home.

 


Our Facilities

Tiny Steps is well resourced with provisions to ensure coverage of The Early Years Foundation Stage.

There are also changing facilities, two toilets and sinks which are child size and height to encourage independence. We work closely with parents to support toilet training.

 


 What your child will learn

When you ask your child what they did today the usual response is “Only playing”, and this is exactly what they will have been doing! However, there is much more to play than meets the eye. The emphasis in all areas of the setting is learning through play.

The play is natural to children and is the way in which they learn. Through play, they learn new skills, develop new interests, encounter new experiences and build on previous knowledge.  We aim to provide a secure, caring, happy and structured environment where the children learn through meaningful play by using materials and equipment carefully selected and planned for by the staff.

All activities will be planned through monitoring and assessing the children‛s individual needs and emerging skills. The children will have the opportunity to take part in a range of activities including; Messy play, Role Play, Singing/Nursery Rhymes, Storytime, Letters and Sounds activities, Small World and Construction activities.

 


General Information

Session times are:

  • Morning session: 8:30am until 11:30am
  • Lunchtime session: 11:30am until 12:30pm
  • Afternoon session: 12:30pm until 3:30pm

 


 Fees

Eligible families (see criteria, below) receive 15 hours for free and while they receive preference, if there are fewer than 12 children per session, places will be available to families who are prepared to pay. Parents may choose to top up funding to enable their child to have more sessions.

Sessions will be charged at £5.00 per hour to include lunch, toast and snacks on full days.

Please note, an offer of a place in our Tiny Steps Academy does not guarantee a Reception place, for which there is a separate application process.

 


 Eligibility criteria

Some two-year-olds can get free early education and childcare – that’s 15 hours’ worth of free funding. Entitled families have priority.

To qualify, you must be in receipt of one of the following:

  • Income Support
  • Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA)
  • Income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
  • Support through part 6 of the Immigration and Asylum Act
  • Tax credits and have an annual income under £16,190 before tax
  • The guaranteed element of State Pension Credit
  • The Working Tax Credit 4-week run on (the payment you get when you stop qualifying for Working Tax Credit)
  • Universal Credit.

 

Children are also entitled to a place if:

  • they are looked after by a local council
  • they have a current statement of special education needs (SEN) or an education health and care plan
  • they receive Disability Living Allowance
  • they have left care under a special guardianship order, child arrangements order or adoption order.

 


 What next?

If you are considering a place and would like to come and visit us, please get in contact to arrange a time.  We welcome parents to come and get a feel for the setting and to meet the staff and try out some of the exciting equipment and resources.

If you would like to register your child in Tiny Steps, you will need to fill out an enrolment form and return to the school office.  We will get in contact with you the term prior to your child starting Tiny Steps to arrange a home visit and invite you to our Stay and Play sessions.

Thank you for considering our Tiny Steps Academy and we hope to see you soon!