World Mental Health Day at Westwood

Westwood Mental Health Day

There was time for reflection at Westwood Day Nursery in Coventry as colleagues marked World Mental Health Day with a series of wellbeing initiatives and treats from managers.

Having been encouraged to come to work dressed in clothing that made them happy, practitioners from the Ofsted-rated ‘Outstanding’ Day Nursery on Westwood Business Park made the time to talk and shared the things they valued most about their fellow colleagues.

As part of the occasion, colleagues were delighted to receive gifts from managers, including sweet treats and self-care items including face and foot masks to help recharge at home, whilst children explored books including ‘The Colour Monster’ to help understand emotions.

Westwood Day Nursery Manager, Lyndsey Matthews explained;

“Mental health is just as essential as physical health, and it’s crucial to address it at every age. We have the privilege of witnessing first-hand the incredible potential and resilience of young minds, and it’s our responsibility to provide a safe and supportive environment for their emotional development. Thank you to our amazing colleagues, who work tirelessly every day to create a nurturing and caring environment for the little ones in our nursery.”



Windmill Hill celebrate Early Years Wellbeing Week

Celebrations were well underway at Windmill Hill Day Nursery in Swindon as colleagues marked Early Years Wellbeing Week with the help of their generous nursery families.

At the Ofsted-rated ‘Outstanding’ Day Nursery on Windmill Hill Business Park, practitioners were delighted to be presented with a hamper of goodies from a family new to the setting, filled with food and drink gifts, as well as self-care items including lip balms, candles, shower gels and a handwritten card for the hardworking team as a token of appreciation.

Meanwhile, Windmill Hill Practitioner and resident ‘Happiness Ninja’, Emily Riordan, surprised devoted colleagues with a pick ‘n’ mix station which was enjoyed during breaks, complete with favourite sweet treats and messages of gratitude for staff to read.

Windmill Hill Day Nursery Manager, Kayleigh Blaylock explained;

“We were so touched by the incredibly kind hamper gesture from one of our nursery families. Our amazing team work tirelessly to create a safe, nurturing, and stimulating environment for the children and it is lovely for this to be recognised. Taking care of our staff’s wellbeing ensures they can continue to provide the highest quality of care and support to families.”

Early Years Wellbeing Week 2023 takes place from 9th to 15th October. The annual event is dedicated to improving the mental health and wellbeing of the early years workforce.

Windmill Hill Early Years Wellbeing Week



Parent partnerships at Devonshire

Devonshire parent partnership

There were exciting learning opportunities at every turn for children at Devonshire Day Nursery in Chiswick as they took part in a series of activities inspired by parent suggestions.

Taking inspiration from the topics being enjoyed at home, practitioners from the Ofsted-rated ‘Outstanding’ Day Nursery on Bennett Street planned a special ‘Fitness and Nutrition Week’, complete with Zumba classes, yoga sessions, obstacle courses and even a danceathon.

As part of the experience, children were delighted to visit the local recreation ground, where they practiced their physical skills as they explored the playground equipment, showcasing their balance and gross motor skills on the seesaw, swing and climbing frame, all whilst discussing the benefits of exercise and the importance of good nutrition to healthy lifestyles.

The parent partnership initiatives continued inside as family members volunteered to read to children during special storytelling sessions, with mums and dads visiting nursery to narrate beloved books including ‘Zog’ and ‘The Tiger Who Came to Tea’ to their captivated audience.

Devonshire Day Nursery Manager, Emmy Avery explained;

“We pride ourselves on having such strong relationships with our families at Devonshire and their support is essential in helping us ensure the children get the most out of their nursery experience. The group loved trying new exercises and were thrilled to be read to by the wonderful parents who helped bring their favourite stories to life and instil a love of books.”



Seed to plate experiences at Maples

Maples children grow tomatoes for soup

There was delight for children at Maples Day Nursery in Winchester as they picked their harvest of tomatoes, having patiently grown them from plants in the garden outside.

After embarking on a summer gardening project, children from the award-winning setting on Hatherley Road were delighted to see the results of their hard work from the daily watering and pruning, before picking the ripened red tomatoes and taking them in to wash.

Back inside, children spoke about kitchen hygiene and protocols, before putting on their aprons and using safety knives to chop their homegrown tomatoes, along with other fresh vegetables, which they added to the blender to prepare soup which was enjoyed for lunch.

Throughout the experience, children were able to learn about the process from seed to plate, whilst showcasing their early language and mathematics skills to monitor and log the growth of the plants and identify when their crops would be ready to harvest through observations. 

It is for such activities that Maples have been awarded the prestigious ‘Green Flag’ from Eco-Schools, the highest accolade in the international scheme, which is awarded for exceptional environmental awareness and conservation practices, with activities at the nursery including creating habitats for wildlife and litter picking sessions in their local area.

Maples Day Nursery Team Leader, Casey Woodbridge explained;

“We’re hugely proud of the children for seeing this project through from start to finish, and everyone loved the soup we created as a result. Teaching our children about self-sufficiency, healthy eating habits, and the joy of teamwork is a key part of their development. This was a fantastic experience and we look forward to trying more of our homegrown herbs and veg.



Hampstead Gate children make special delivery

Inspired by their love of nature, children from Hampstead Gate Day Nursery in Milton Keynes have been putting pen to paper to write one of their eco-heroes a special letter.

Having spent the last few weeks creating pictures of Sir David Attenborough, pre-schoolers from the setting on Eelbrook Avenue were delighted to compile them along with a letter they had written as a group, which detailed their ongoing environmental work as part of the Eco-Schools scheme and admiration for the conservationist, before venturing out to post it.

On their journey, children stopped by the local shops to buy stamps, which they carefully placed on the letter and delivered to the post box, where they learnt more about how the letters are retrieved by the postman and the journey they go on to meet their recipient.

This inspired related role play activities back at nursery, with children writing their own letters to exchange with each other and getting into character as postal workers and shopkeepers.

Hampstead Gate Team Leader, Ashleigh Smith explained;  

“This was a fantastic learning experience for the children and they were so excited at the prospect of their letter reaching Sir David. They are hugely passionate about the planet and the animals within it, which is incredible to see and reflected in the efforts they put into our exciting Eco-Schools activities, for which we have been awarded the top Green Flag.”   

Hampstead Gate children post letter to Attenborough



Lime Grove children celebrate World Animal Day

There was delight for children at Lime Grove Day Nursery in Hemel Hempstead as they celebrated World Animal Day with activities themed around the beloved ‘Dear Zoo’ book.

Dressed in character as their favourite wild animals, children were greeted by balloons and safari backdrops as they arrived at the Ofsted-rated ‘Outstanding’ Day Nursery on Park Road, where they posed for photos with their families before heading inside to begin the fun.

After following the different animal footprints on the floor and discussing which creatures they could be from, children were thrilled to pen their very own ‘Dear Zoo’ inspired letters, writing to the zoo to describe their ideal pet, before posting them in the red post-box.

Later in the day, children were captivated as they received a special visit from the ZooLab, where expert animal handlers introduced the group to an array of exotic creatures, from tarantulas to giant snails, which they pet whilst learning about habitats and care routines.

As part of the festivities, children enjoyed a picnic tea complete with handmade sandwiches, cakes and fruit and veg platters, whilst families enjoyed a bake sale of animal decorated cakes, with all proceeds going to The Trussell Trust food bank network to help local people.

To extend the learning experience, Lime Grove families sent in pictures of their own pets and experiences of visiting the farm and zoo, which were compiled into their own nursery version of the ‘Dear Zoo’ story for all to enjoy, building on key communication and language skills.

Lime Grove Day Nursery Team Leader, Robyn Shuck explained;

“Our Dear Zoo festivities for World Animal Day were a roaring success and everyone had a fantastic time. We continuously strive to ignite our children’s passion for reading and promote a lasting love for the environment and the creatures in it, so this was a brilliant way to bring both together. There were endless chances to showcase creativity and our little ones loved immersing themselves in all the opportunities on offer.”



Windmill Hill celebrate European Day of Languages

There were learning opportunities at every turn for children at Windmill Hill Day Nursery in Swindon as they celebrated European Day of Languages with a series of exciting activities.

At the Ofsted-rated ‘Outstanding’ Day Nursery on Windmill Hill Business Park, pre-schoolers showcased their creativity by making inspired arts and crafts, from flags to famous landmarks including the Eiffel Tower and Leaning Tower of Pisa, before exploring the European countries on a map and using talking tiles to practice common words and phrases.

As part of the festivities, children took part in a special tasting session complete with traditional food items from around the world including croissants and Welsh cakes, before taking to the kitchen to bake their very own bread and cheese scones, all whilst learning basic kitchen safety and developing fine motor skills, teamwork and communication.

During the celebrations, families also enjoyed a themed bake sale to celebrate the rich diversity within the nursery, with parents bringing in offerings of their signature dishes including Italian focaccia, German bienenstich cake and Spanish ensaimadas, with all proceeds going to The Trussell Trust food bank network to help local people facing hardship.

Windmill Hill Day Nursery Quality Manager, Karamay Pritchett explained;

“We had a brilliant time celebrating European Day of Languages and we have been so impressed by our children and their enthusiasm to learn more. This occasion not only highlighted the importance of language learning, but also helped foster a sense of unity and appreciation for diversity among our pre-schoolers, all whilst raising money for charity.”


Cedars Day Nursery - Leighton Buzzard

We prioritise the importance of outdoor play at Cedars Day Nursery in Leighton Buzzard. All children at our Ofsted-rated ‘Outstanding’ nursery have access to our large, natural garden area on a daily basis as we recognise the impact that being outdoors has on a child’s social, emotional and physical development. The children enjoy planting vegetables and tasting their produce, served by our dedicated Nursery Chef.

Cedars Day Nursery, Mentmore Rd, Leighton Buzzard LU7 2PA

Tel:  01525 850200