Once again, this month, quite a few members of staff have accessed training sessions:

Miss Sarah C.: Phase One Letters and Sounds
Miss Lucy and Miss Jodie: Safeguarding Level 1
Miss Laura and Miss Deena: Maths in the Early Years
Miss Lauren: Wellcomm Speech and Language toolkit

Janet and Miss Laura attended the Nursery World Conference in London, Laura attended a Masterclass on Playing and Creating in a digital world and a seminar on outdoors provision. Janet attended seminars on Musical development and Curriculum planning.

Several staff updated their Paediatric First Aid certificate – this is a legal requirement of all level 3 Educators.

Forest School sessions continued with, amongst other things, a focus on Pirates, use of tools, looking for frogs and frogs spawn and a search for Allan the Alligator who frightened all his friends with his false teeth.

We celebrated Chinese New Year with Chinese food for lunch. Wise Owls created their own dragon and did a dance with the dragon. Other rooms enjoyed craft activities relating to the celebrations. We also got involved in Valentine’s Day activities, making cards, threading hearts, and making heart biscuits

A meeting was held to discuss how to update and improve our website.

We took delivery of some new equipment, including some furniture for Wise Owls, a den for Butterflies and beautiful, large sea creatures and an alligator for everyone to enjoy.

We changed some items in the HUB to reflect the fact that spring is on its way.

Staff from a nearby Nursery School came to join us on a Forest Walk with some of our older Ducklings. They wanted to gain some inspiration to help them set up a Forest area for babies at their setting.

Miss Laura visited Lostock Primary School to observe how they organise ‘continuous provision’ in their Reception class. This gives the children the opportunity to be independent learners and to enhance their interests.

Employee of the month February 2019:

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Miss Chloe W – for her enthusiasm & for taking on extra responsibilities

This month some new staff started at Nursery - Miss Laura, our new Nursery teacher; Miss Brenda, our new Cook; Miss Chloe, who began her apprenticeship with us & Miss Hannah G who left in the autumn, has now returned to us, and is working at our Before and After School club, as well as supporting Nursery four mornings per week.

More Forest School sessions took place, led by Miss Tracy and Janet – themes included bird watching, making nests for owls, looking for a lost Teddy in the snow, and bridge building.

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We had a visit from a violinist – one of our children’s uncles. He played us some wonderful music on his violin and showed us how to play two smaller violins.

Many families took part in the Big Bird Watch and we had special displays around Nursery showing the various birds we see in our local environment. We are making sure that the birds are well fed during winter-time.

All the staff had evening meetings to look at the Ofsted criteria for an Outstanding Setting. We identified our strengths and the areas we still need to work on.

Swimming lessons resumed for Wise Owls.

We purchased some new equipment and furniture, including an outdoor pergola for the
Butterflies and new Tuff (builders’) trays in various rooms.

Miss Abi – our Health Champion, has signed us up to participate in a ‘Supervised Toothbrushing Scheme’ for all children aged 2 & over. Each child taking part will receive a free toothbrush and a fluoride toothpaste to use at nursery. Staff in your child’s room will give you more information regarding this.

Various staff attended courses:
Miss Emma J & Miss Jade: Sensory processing
Miss Lauren: WellComm – a speech and language toolkit for Early Years
Miss Sarah C: language stimulation
Miss Kerry: assessing progress in the Early Years
Miss Abi: Promoting Communication and Language and use of the Bolton Council Toothbrush scheme

Employee of the month January 2019:

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Miss Suzanne
Excellent knowledge of nursery policies and carrying out extra duties above and beyond expectations

Other Nominations:
Miss Holly – Putting others’ needs first
Miss Meg T – Her positive attitude with parents
Miss Lauren T – Supporting new colleagues
Miss Chloe- Using her initiative
Miss Lucy - For offering to carry out extra tasks
Miss Jodie- Taking responsibility

This month was a very busy month with lots of Christmas -related events taking place. The Wise Owls took part in our Nativity Service at Holy Trinity Church, performing The Lucky Owls which tells the Nativity story from animals’ perspective. The children were fantastic and they sang, acted and danced beautifully.

We had a visit from a member of the Bolton Startwell Team who came to ensure that we are fully prepared for our next Ofsted Inspection which could take place at any time.
We took delivery of some problem solving equipment.


We had some very successful Christmas parties at Nursery and Father Christmas visited us and brought each child a book as a Christmas present.
Many of our children and some staff wore their Christmas Jumpers and outfits on certain days in December, including on Christmas Lunch Day.
Staff appraisals continued to take place.


Wise Owls made Christmas cards for Friends of Croft House and some of the children went posting cards to people who live on Bridge Street.

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There was a festive Forest School session - some of the Wise Owls went for a Santa Hunt in the Forest and found treats along the way. They made wooden Santa pegs and had a campfire roasting marshmallow, snowmen kebabs.

Work continued to progress on the upper floor of Phase Two in readiness for our Before and After school club.

Employee of the month December 2018:

Miss Kerry – for her organisational skills for the festive season & putting others needs before her own.

Other nominations:

Miss Meg H - enthusiasm & detail when giving feedback to parents
Miss Vicky - using her initiative
Miss Judy - for supporting in the kitchen
Miss Jacky - for supporting colleagues
Miss Hannah B - for her positive attitude
Miss Annalise - excellent feedback
Miss Morgan - using her initiative
Miss Lindsay W - helping to organise Christmas lunch

This month we took delivery of some new equipment - sorting and IT items for Ducklings, a rocket for Wise Owls, characters (soft toys) relating to popular stories and extra items for our Dolls’ House.

Lindsay W attended Early Years Provider Portal Training & Terri attended Level 2 Safeguarding training. Janet continues to work with our apprentices to ensure that as well as being well-trained, they have a good understanding of our very high standards at Croft House.
Preparations for our Nativity service continued and Wise Owls chose their parts and started to discuss costumes etc.
Staff appraisals took place.
We held our Open Night which attracted lots of prospective parents. We made lanterns for the Horwich Lantern Parade, had a camp fire, there was the opportunity to purchase items for Christmas presents, a singing session, the chance to watch videos of the children involved in their activities, festive refreshments, and an opportunity to look at displays celebrating the children’s skills and interests. Thank you for all the donations of tombola prizes – we raised over £100 for Meningitis Now!

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We took most of the Wise Owls to the Victoria Hall to participate in the Bolton Mayor’s Christmas Concert. We loved listening to the orchestra and sang along with the 12 days of Christmas and songs from Mary Poppins, Greatest Showman and Polar Express – we also saw Father Christmas. We had a fab time!

Employee of the month November 2018:

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Miss Morgan – for her positive attitude towards learning and showing initiative.

Other nominations:

Miss Meg H - going above & beyond what’s expected (from a parent)
Miss Jess - being flexible
Miss Hannah - for her positive attitude
Miss Emma J & Miss Beth - taking on extra tasks at Open Evening
All Staff - for support & efforts to make Open Evening a success

Miss Aimee attended a Music Box training session at Eagley Infant School. She learnt some new songs and musical techniques and is using these with the Ladybird children as well as others at Singing Time.

Miss Terri, our Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator attended a training meeting.

Janet attended a meeting with the Bolton Start well team. Updates on health issues and children’s learning and development were shared.

We took delivery of lots of new equipment e.g. an exciting dolls’ house in Busy Bees, a new cosy chair in Ducklings and some lovely furniture for our Parents’ Room.

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The builders and staff worked extremely hard to make sure that the new Wise Owl room was ready for the last week of October. The room is very exciting with a lovely Forest Den, a very impressive Smart board, and lots of new equipment. The room has lovely views over the stream and Janet saw the heron in the stream a few weeks ago.

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A nurse came in to advise staff on how to deal with children that have epilepsy.

Our Photograph Day was extremely successful, a lot less stressful than it used to be at the old nursery when there was very little space. Most parents generally seemed to be thrilled with the photos of their children.

The end of the month saw the end of a very long era for Croft House Nursery. All our Nursery children have now moved out of the original building and are altogether at the new premises. Whilst lots of people have very fond memories of the old Croft House there is no doubt that the new building provides us with so many wonderful opportunities for the future. Our Before and After School children remain at the old building until the first floor of the new building is ready for them, sometime in the New Year.

Janet continues to work with our apprentices to ensure that as well as being well-trained, they have a good understanding of our very high standards at Croft House.

Employee of the month October 2018:

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Miss Cortney – for her positive attitude towards learning & for carrying out tasks assigned to her.

Other nominations:

Miss Danielle - for reassuring a new Duckling parent

Miss Judy - for being supportive

Miss Lyndsey F - for fabulous feedback

Miss Megan H - for very enthusiastic story time

Miss Morgan - fantastic approach to afterschool club

Miss Jodie - fantastic approach to afterschool club