Abacus Preschool Lichfield

Name Abacus Preschool Lichfield
Ofsted Inspection Rating Good
Inspection Date 21 January 2020
Address Abacus Pre-School, Frank Halfpenny Hall, George Lane, Lichfield, WS13 6DX
Phone Number 01543254168
Type Childcare on Non-Domestic Premises, Full day care
Gender Mixed
Catchment Area Information Available No
Last Distance Offered Information Available No

What is it like to attend this early years setting?

The provision is good

Children have a positive attitude to learning and are eager to explore the interesting range of resources offered. For example, they explore brightly coloured feathers which are displayed in a large tray. They discuss what happens when they blow through straws and watch the feathers move about on the tray. Children explore their creative abilities as they make shapes with dough and play with small-world people. They make up imagined scenarios as they include others in their play. Outdoors they play with pots and pans and explore the sand pit and mud kitchen. They enjoy making shapes with the sand and discovering small dinosaurs which staff have hidden in it. Staff have high expectations of children. They have a good knowledge of their abilities and are consistent in their support to ensure children learn through play. Staff skilfully promote children’s communication and language skills. For example, they enhance children’s learning during mathematical activities with well-chosen questions. They encourage children to learn new vocabulary and to solve problems and think of new ideas during activities. Children behave well and are kind and considerate to others. They take on responsibility in the pre-school and help to tidy away toys at the end of each session. Children settle well and show they are happy and feel safe and secure.

What does the early years setting do well and what does it need to do better?

nChildren have frequent opportunities to learn about the wider world. They borrow books from the local library, attend story sessions at the local Church and visit the local Mosque. Outings to the local bakery give children opportunities to understand how food products are made. Children also take pleasure in outings to the local park and walks to nearby woodland.nThe manager and staff team closely monitor and track children’s development, to promptly identify potential gaps. Information is shared with other professionals who are involved with the children. This enables staff to successfully access valuable information about children’s learning and development. Additional funding is used effectively to provide well-targeted resources and experiences, which some children need to help them achieve and develop so they make good progress.nCommunication between parents and staff is generally good. Parents say their children have made good progress since attending the pre-school and they are invited to stay-and-play sessions with their child. Parents say they have termly meetings, where staff tell them about children’s progress and what they need to learn next. However, some parents are not fully aware of how to access their child’s assessment information to fully support children’s continuity of care.nStaff use activities, such as daily routines, to help children develop anunderstanding of healthy living. For example, they encourage children to make healthy, informed choices about what they eat first from their lunch boxes. Children know that they need to wash their hands before eating to reduce the risk of infection. They enjoy outdoor activities in the fresh air and have regular opportunities to exercise and be active.nStaff support children’s mathematical skills well. They provide children with interactive activities to develop their understanding of how to use numbers. For example, children use weighing scales to weigh stones and bottles of water. They compare quantities and learn how to use mathematical words to describe what they are doing. This helps to deepen their mathematical knowledge and understanding.nThe manager and staff evaluate the provision regularly and make effective plans to improve the children’s learning and enjoyment. Staff attend training to extend their professional knowledge and share information with their colleagues to help develop their teaching skills. The manager monitors the quality of teaching so that children make good progress.nChildren make good progress from their starting points in learning. Staff find out about children’s prior learning when they first start, to identify what children need to learn next. Staff support children to be independent. For example, they encourage children to put on their own coats before they play outdoors.nChildren enjoy group activities and learn to concentrate and listen while learning together. However, on occasions, staff do not always follow children’s spontaneous interests or encourage them to share their own ideas.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.Staff recognise the signs of abuse and neglect, and know the steps to take if they are concerned about a child. All staff have completed safeguarding training and regularly update their knowledge. They know what action to take if they are concerned about a child in their care. They have a good understanding of the types of abuse and other wider safeguarding issues. The manager uses robust recruitment procedures to help ensure the suitability of staff. Staff conduct risk assessments to minimise any risks to children. Staff are vigilant in keeping children safe from harm and supervise children effectively at all times. Staff model how to use equipment safely and children are learning how to keep themselves safe.

What does the setting need to do to improve?

To further improve the quality of the early years provision, the provider should:nreview the organisation of group activities to extend and challenge children’s learning more consistently, build on their spontaneous interests and encourage them to share their own ideasnembed further the opportunities for parents to access their child’s information, to enable them to be even more fully involved in their child’s learning.