A Little About Us
Conveniently located just off junction 4a, Heartlands interchange, M8 we are situated in the heart of Polkemmet Country Park which has 168 acres of beautiful woodland and riverside walkways, ideally suited to meet the needs of all children. The service will focus on Outdoor Learning (Forest School). Benefiting the children from all that nature has to offer in the space and freedom of the park.
At Polkemmet Childcare we provide daycare and education for children from 3 months to 5 years old, providing part-time and full-time places.
Polkemmet Childcare aims to promote the holistic development of all children. Fostering resilient, confident, independent and creative learners.
We have a learner centred approach which will interweave with the ever-changing moods and marvels, potential and challenges of the natural world through the seasons to fill every Forest School session with discovery and difference.
EARLY LEARNING OPPORTUNITIES
At Polkemmet Childcare we recognise that children learn in different ways and at different rates and plan for this accordingly. Our aim is to support all children attending the nursery to attain their maximum potential within their individual capabilities.
We implement the Curriculum for Excellence set by Education Scotland that sets standards to ensure all children learn and develop well. We support and enhance children’s learning and development holistically through play-based activities. We view all aspects of learning and development and ensure a flexible approach is maintained, which responds quickly to children’s learning and developmental needs. We develop tailor-made activities based on observations which inform future planning and draw on children’s needs and interests. This is promoted through a balance of adult-led and child-initiated opportunities both indoors and outdoors. We value child-led play and ensure we promote this through providing activities that are flexible, take account of ages, development needs and interests. We know that activities provided by staff will allow children to enjoy organised and free play including quiet times.
We acknowledge parents as primary educators and encourage parental involvement as outlined in our Parents and Carers as Partners policy. We build strong home links in order to enhance and extend children’s learning both within the nursery environment and in the child’s home.
All our staff know about the importance of building strong attachments with children. They are trained to recognise the different stages of attachment and use this knowledge to support children and families settling in to the nursery.
Our nursery will work in partnership with parents to settle their child into the nursery environment by:
Allocating a key worker to each child and his/her family, before he/she starts to attend. The key worker welcomes and looks after the child ensuring that their care is tailored to meet their individual needs. He/she offers a settled relationship for the child and builds a relationship with his/her parents during the settling in period and throughout his/her time at the nursery, to ensure the family has a familiar contact person to assist with the settling in process
At Polkemmet Childcare we are committed to the importance of daily outdoor play and the physical development of all children regardless of their age and stage of development. We provide outdoor play in all weathers. Where possible and appropriate, we make outdoor activities accessible to children with learning difficulties and disabilities to ensure inclusive use of the outdoor area.
We recognise that children need regular access to outdoor play in order to keep fit and healthy, develop their gross motor skills and fine motor skills, experience learning in a natural environment and access sunlight in order to absorb vitamin D more effectively.
We ensure all areas are safe and secure through close supervision and the use of robust risk assessments and safety checks. Where possible and appropriate, we plan and encourage play that helps children understand and manage risks. This type of play allows children to explore and find their own boundaries in a safe environment with supportive early learning and childcare practitioners. Staff are informed of the importance of safety procedures and are trained appropriately to ensure these procedures are followed effectively.
NUTRITION AND MEALTIMES
At Polkemmet Childcare we believe that mealtimes should be happy, social occasions for children and staff alike. We promote shared, enjoyable positive interactions at these times.
We are committed to offering children healthy, nutritious and balanced meals and snacks which meet individual needs and requirements.
We will ensure that:
- A balanced and healthy breakfast, midday meal, dinner and two daily snacks are provided for children attending a full day at the nursery
- Menus are planned in advance, rotated regularly and reflect cultural diversity and variation. These are displayed for children and parents to view
- We provide nutritious food at all snack and meal times, avoiding large quantities of fat, sugar, salt and artificial additives, preservatives and colourings
- Menus include servings of fresh fruit and vegetables every day
- Parents and children are involved in menu planning
- Fresh drinking water is always available and accessible. It is frequently offered to children and babies and intake is monitored. In hot weather staff will encourage children to drink more water to keep them hydrated
- Individual dietary requirements are respected. We gather information from parents regarding their children’s dietary needs, including any special dietary requirements, preferences and food allergies that a child has and any special health requirements, before a child starts or joins the nursery. Where appropriate we will carry out a risk assessment in the case of allergies and work alongside parents to put into place an individual dietary plan for their child
PARENTS AND CARERS AS PARTNERS
At Polkemmet Childcare we believe that parents and staff need to work together in a close partnership in order for children to receive the quality of care and early learning to meet their individual needs. We welcome parents as partners and support a two-way sharing of information that helps establish trust and understanding. We are committed to supporting parents in an open and sensitive manner to be an integral part of the care and early learning team within the nursery.
The key worker system supports engagement with all parents and uses strategies to ensure that all parents can contribute to their child’s learning and development. Parents contribute to initial assessments of children’s starting points on entry and they are kept well informed about their children’s progress. Parents are encouraged to support and share information about their children’s learning and development at home. The key worker system ensures all practitioners use effective, targeted strategies and interventions to support learning that match most children’s individual needs.