Little Acorns Nursery offers outstandingly high levels of childcare for babies, toddlers and children under five in Hindley Green, Wigan. With a private driveway, extensive outdoor spaces and excellent facilities inside, it offers superb weekday childcare and a wonderful early years education for little ones.
Outside, there are extensive gardens where children can be close to nature, a variety of exciting play areas and stimulating equipment for children to explore. The exterior spaces also include undercover areas, so children can enjoy outdoor play all year round.
Inside is a warm, welcoming, home-from-home environment where babies, toddlers and preschoolers each have their own, specially-equipped zones (more detail can be seen below). Zones include sleep areas, eating areas, quiet zones, sensory areas, creative areas and literacy opportunities throughout. Staff ensure that children feel safe, secure and loved while learning through a mix of both structured and free play.
The nursery opens at 7:30 a.m. and closes at 6:00 p.m. from Monday to Friday. We close only for Christmas, New Year and over bank holidays.
The Baby Room
The nursery’s Baby Room is a cosy, welcoming area where babies and infants under 2 are settled in and lovingly looked after. With a high staff-to-infant ratio of 1:3, little ones are closely nurtured with care and support. It’s a homely environment where babies and infants have access to a peaceful sleep area, lots of stimulating and sensory equipment and opportunities to explore and discover under supervision. Songs and stories also feature in their activities and there is even an outdoor play area specifically designed for babies.
Our childcare professionals encourage an early appreciation of learning, whilst ensuring that children’s individual interests are also stimulated. Practitioners also provide planned activities that bolster little ones’ learning and development in the prime areas of the Early Years Foundation Stage curriculum (‘EYFS’). These are areas like communication, language, social skills, emotional development and, of course, physical development.
The environment and resources provided focus strongly on exploratory and sensory play experiences. This area supports babies’ exploration and investigation by offering them a wide variety of sensory and tactile objects. The resources provided support babies to respond in a variety of ways to what they see, hear, smell, touch and feel. We provide different types of sensory treasure baskets; these contain a collection of natural and manufactured resources that will support children’s investigation and exploration.
The Toddler Room
Children aged from 2 up to 3 have their own designated Toddler Room with high quality equipment, resources and activities specially suited to their age and stage of development. The staff-to-toddler ratio is set high, at 1 member of staff to every 4 toddlers and, in this way, each child receives ample care and oversight from a qualified early years practitioner. This includes the ability to customise activities to the individual interests of each child as well as allowing them to help toddlers with things like toilet training.
Every single resource in the Toddler Room has been carefully chosen or designed to create an exciting and personalised learning experience, offering accessibility to 2-year-olds while also being challenging enough for those who are closer to 3.
The 3 ‘prime’ areas of the EYFS curriculum remain the core focus here, from a learning and development perspective. So, our early years practitioners help toddlers improve in areas like communication, language, personal, social and emotional development as well as in their physical development. However, now they’re ready, staff also expand their early learning by introducing the other 4 ‘specific’ areas of the EYFS — mathematics, literacy, expressive arts and design and understanding the world. All seven areas are important and ‘foundational’ skills that toddlers will require in order to thrive once they move to the Preschoolers’ Room at the age of 3 and later still when they move on to school.
The Preschoolers’ Room
Once children reach the age of 3, they move to the Preschoolers’ Room. Now that children are becoming more able and independent, the staff-to-preschooler ratio here is set at 1:8. Children also now have more freedom to move from one area to the next, including from inside areas to the exciting ones outdoors. This includes both open-air areas as well as under-cover ones, so they can enjoy outdoor play and discovery all year round.
Activities are now incredibly varied and include both structured play that’s custom planned to suit each individual child and free play where the preschoolers choose whatever activities they prefer. Their growing maturity and greater independence also lead to closer bonds with peers and these will prove invaluable when it’s time to move on to school at the age of 5.
Staff in the Preschoolers’ Room know how important this critical stage is and are adept at helping children prepare for the move to primary school as that time approaches. The highly qualified practitioners will help children in all 7 areas of the EYFS curriculum and ensure they have all the skills, confidence, social skills and knowledge that they’ll need going forwards. That also includes a healthy independence in areas like self-care and even an understanding of the importance of good health and healthy lifestyles.
Extensive Outdoor Areas
Once they’re ready, children at Little Acorns Nursery, Hindley Green, get to spend lots of time outdoors. The nursery really is lucky to have such extensive grounds and these have been divided into many exciting activity areas for the children to enjoy and to explore. There are nature areas, sensory areas, counting activities, construction areas, creative activities like sand play or water play, bikes, an exploratory area and, of course, all the usual slides, Wendy houses and suchlike that you’d expect. It’s a huge adventure for children!