Bourne Valley Nursery Group
Odstock Nursery School Newsletter

Odstock News Summer 2018

Welcome to the new term

I would like to begin by extending our warmest welcome back to the Summer term and for those families new to the setting to welcome them to the Odstock Family.

Over the Spring term the children have weathered the snow, rain, wind and sprinkling of sunshine with enthusiasm and spirit, however I think we are all looking forward to a little reprieve with some sunny days which don’t require quite so much togging up in waterproofs and wellies each time we go outside!

This term we are sure you will join us in welcoming Amy who is working in our preschool, Lauren in our baby room and Beth in our toddler room. We are delighted that our new staff bring more rich experience and passion to our team. For more information on these newest members of our Odstock family see the room home links sheets below.

Nursery action plan overview and update

From the appraisal process in summer 2017 we formulated our annual nursery plan, the key aspects of this we share with parents and value your thoughts as we move forwards on our key targets.

Progress so far is detailed below.

Nature Pedagogy

We have already achieved the development of the nursery garden in the main rear playground having the tree planted after the playground surface was removed.

Ducklings were hatched and reared for a few weeks which helped the children reflect on life cycles. Our next cycle will watch the returning house martins and then we will have butterfly emporiums for watching the caterpillars turn into butterfly’s.

All key groups have been paired up with other groups from around the nursery and we have started our growing activities, beetroot, potatoes, tomatoes, flowers and more are amongst the groups which will also encourage more working across the age groups.

Rituals not just routines

We have now had staff training and professional dialogues on four key aspects of our routines, looking at how we can improve our provision for the children. So far we have reflected on meal times, self regulation, staff meetings and communication and transitions. Several changes have been implemented for example for meal times we have improved the types of centre pieces the children have, the china which food is presented upon, the way our tables are prepared and presented and self service options for children, lavender cloths for face wiping after meal times etc... Full details will be available to parents when we have completed this ongoing project which we aim to have completed by January 2019.

In the mean time we will continue to reflect on how we celebrate daily, weekly and monthly rituals with the children and families and why this is important to us at Odstock Nursery .


Staff have been working closely with children to respectfully display their work, photographs and interests, this has taken a variety of forms such as scrap books, wall displays, investment of a new computer programme, professional visits and children’s story telling.


We have been working hard on our literacy here at the nursery with many new books being purchased and shared, props and puppets, formal babbling babies, talking toddlers and letters and sounds sessions are happening daily.

Interacting with live Theatre

Last year you may remember we were delighted to be a part of the live theatre production of Shackleton the dog brought to us by the Tall Tree Theatre which is run by actress and theatre maker Anna Harriot (also a parent to children previously attending Odstock Day Nursery). Due to the success of the first rural touring show Anna is coming back on the road to bring us her second production Lily and baby bird. The show will be previewed to our children and staff prior to the tour commencing and then we will be lucky enough to see it again after it they have started the tour. The dates for this event are in the dates sheet which is attached to this newsletter. The new show will be touring over the autumn. Last year we invited parents to join us at the second showing and bring along children who are not in attendance that day. The show is free to our families however spaces will be limited as it was very popular last time. We will share more information nearer the time for you all, for now if you would like to know more see the link below.

30 hours funding and New Contracts

Thank you to all parents who have been renewing your funding codes and signing new paperwork for the 2018/2019 funding year.

Head count date is at the start of May 2018. All hours for the Summer Term must be in commencement by this date and will not be allowed to change until the end of the Summer Period (July or Aug 2018).

If you do want to make any changes please do see Natalie or Melissa in the office or email in on the address.

Staff Training

Its been another busy term for our training as most of the team turned out on a wet and cold weekend to complete our paediatric first aid certification. We feel this is of vital importance for all of our staff to be able to keep your children safe and well if any health emergency did occur whilst in our care. We aim to have all of our staff trained every three years with annual updates in meetings as well. This is a much higher standard than is expected in early years in general as the guidance is that one person per shift must be first aid trained. We hope you will agree it is very important for all staff to have this knowledge and keep it up to date.

Charlotte from babies completed a course about strong boys and this has really helped her within her equality role.

Natalie and Melissa attended a fire awareness and extinguishers course which supplemented their previous online certification.

All of our teams have completed their update Safeguarding training, food hygiene and fire awareness courses with our new staff completing this within their first few weeks with us.

In April Chloe and Suzi from Toddlers both attended an international study tour in the world famous nurseries of Reggio Emilia in Italy. They both had the most amazing experience observing practice and meeting people from 47 countries around the globe and are now keen to share their learnings with the rest of the team. We value very much the opportunity to have international exchanges of best practice and we feel this helps us to reflect and improve our provision here at Odstock.

Parent Workshops

A huge thank you to the parents that came along to our two workshops last term, one in baby room and one for preschool transition to school. The workshops are enjoyable for me and the team to provide and we think that they were well received by the families who attended.

Due to the response we would like to offer a new workshop for all parents from all rooms which will go some way to explain our ethos to self-regulation for children (behaviour management) and how we offer praise and commentary as a substitute to stickers / bribery rewards and punishments. The aim of the session is to share practice and ideas that might help parents at home and give a deeper understanding of how children’s brains work. The date for this will be confirmed in the next few weeks and will be emailed to you. We are happy to take parents request for items to be covered on this evening.

Outdoor clothes

As the good weather hopefully returns now we are in the summer term we would please remind parents to bring your child to nursery with sun cream already applied ready for the day. We will also require a named sun hat please. We provide sun cream for topping your child up through the day, however if your child has any skin sensitivities please provide your own named bottle for us to use.

May we also remind you that in this nice weather there is a lot of water play happening, practical closed toe sandals or crocs are ideal and clothes which you are happy for them to paint in or play in the sand and water would be appreciated. We have had some children attending in best clothing which does run the risk of being damaged.

Car Seats

Could we please remind parents that we do not have the capacity to store car seats, we have been having up to 5 car seats being left in the office and corridors per day and this is not safe for our fire evacuation procedures as they have been left in areas which restrict our safe passage from the building. We do understand it is difficult if you are swapping over with another carer in the day but please do try and make alternative arrangements so that we are not posing a fire hazard.

Odstock Family of Educators

Below is an up to date over view of the staff working across the respective groups, their job roles and qualification grade for your information.

Over half of our staff team also have their own children and we believe this brings invaluable insight into the lives of families.

Natalie Manager and Safeguarding Lead and SENCO (Level 6)

Suzi Support staff working across rooms (level 3)

Angela Cook

Baby Room: Jess Team Leader and Health and Safety Rep and Fire Warden (Level 3)

Jodie Deputy Team Leader (Level 3)

Charlotte Key worker (Level 6)

Sophie Key worker (working towards level 3)

Lauren Key worker (part time 2 days) (working towards level 3)

Toddlers: Megan Team Leader (level 5 working towards level 6)

Beth Deputy Team Leader (level 3)

Agnes Key worker (level 3)

Chloe Key worker (working towards level 6)

Zoe support Team Leader and acting SENCO (Part time from mid-May) (level 3)

Preschool: Melissa Team Leader and Deputy Manager and Deputy Safeguarding Lead (level 6)

Emma Deputy Team Leader (level 3)

Keith Key Worker (level 4)

Tracey Key Worker (level 3)

Les Key worker (level 2 working towards level 3)

Amy key worker (level 3 Forest Schools)

Thank you for taking the time to read this update!

Natalie, Melissa and the Odstock Team.

Odstock Day Nursery Summer Term Events Calendar 2018
Monday 7th May
Bank Holiday
Nursery Closed
Monday 28th May
Bank Holiday
Nursery Closed
Tuesday 29th May – Friday 1st June
May Half Term
No attendance for Grant only or Term time only children.
Friday 29th June
International Mud Day
Join us for some muddy fun, remember your waterproofs this day and be prepared for a bath in the evening!! It could get very messy!
Friday 6th July 2018 5:00-6:30pm
Summer family social. Open House for parents
We will be hosting an open house event for parents to come into the nursery and see what the children have been doing over the summer term. Staff will be on hand to speak to parents and there will be refreshments and activities on offer outside too. We hope this will be an opportunity for you to gain a deeper understanding into our practice and ethos and a chance to speak to your key person.
Monday 9th July All day
Splash day. Fun day of paddling, splashing and more.
A wet day of water based fun and shenanigans. Please bring your child with swimming costumes with a t-shirt to get wet, swim nappy if you have one or two and sun suit or wet suit if you have them.
Thursday 12th July 10:30am
School Leavers Sports Day and party.
We would like to invite parents of the children who are leaving for school in September to come along to the nursery and join us with a fun session of sports where the children can showcase all that they have learnt over the summer. They will also receive a copy of their reports and leavers cards. Refreshments will also be provided, please tell a member of preschool if you will be attending.
Monday 16th July
Preschool leavers trip (location still to be confirmed.)
This year to celebrate the end of the school year for all of our children in preschool we will be going on an end of term trip. We do ask parents to join us and help in transporting the children to the centre. For those who are unable to attend alternative arrangements will be made for the children with the staff team. We will share in a large picnic, visit some local sights and share time together.
Friday 20th July
Last day of summer term for all grant only children
As our grant only contract children go off for the summer we wish you all a wonderful time and for those of you who are not off to school, we look forward to seeing you all again in September.
Friday 25th July
Last day of summer term for all term time only children.
As our term time only contract children go off for the summer we wish you all a wonderful time and for those of you who are not off to school, we look forward to seeing you all again in September.
Monday 27th Aug
Bank Holiday
Nursery Closed
Monday 3rd September
First day of Autumn Term
All grant only and term time only children return to nursery for Autumn Term
Wednesday 26th
Preview of Lily and baby bird Theatre Show.
Tall Tree Theatre company presents its latest play for a preview at the nursery today.
Friday 12th October
Lily and the Baby bird show for all
Our second show of Lily and the baby bird. Extra bookings taken (free of charge) to come in and see this exciting live theatre. More info about booking in autumn term.
Thursday 25th – Friday 2nd Nov
Autumn Half Term
Grant Only and Term Time contract children will not be in attendance for this week.
Monday 24th December 2018
ADVANCED NOTICE of Christmas dates
The nursery will be closed for these two weeks we hope everyone has a lovely Winter Break. !
Bourne Valley Nursery Children Waving