Ashdown Day Nursery

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About Ashdown Day Nursery

Name Ashdown Day Nursery
Ofsted Inspections
Address Little Oaks, Tomtits Lane, Forest Row, Sussex, RH18 5AT
Type Childcare on Non-Domestic Premises, Full day care
Gender Mixed
Local Authority EastSussex
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this early years setting?

The provision is good

Children are greeted by gentle, kind and loving staff. They settle quickly and are soon playing with favourite activities, such as reading books, playing musical instruments, or building train tracks. Children appear to thrive in the delightful, calm and homely environment.

They build strong relationships with staff, who support them to become confident and independent learners.Children and babies spend lots of time outside. They regularly explore the nearby fields and woodlands.

Children learn and recall words to describe the world around them, including the changes in the seasons. For instance, babies point and say '...acorn', while older children know they have collected 'beech' leaves on their walk. Children learn how to respect and understand the needs of others.

Staff act as very good role models for children's positive behaviour. They skilfully guide children to see things from another's point of view. They are quick to meet the emotional and physical needs of babies before they become distressed or overtired.

Children are imaginative and eager to explore. They become deeply involved in their play. They focus their attention on tasks without becoming distracted.

Children develop their self-confidence as they learn to be more independent. All children, including those with special educational needs and/or disabilities, gain the skills they need to become resilient and motivated learners for the future.

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

Leadership is strong and effective.

The distinct character of the nursery has been maintained, despite necessary restrictions during the COVID-19 pandemic. For example, staff continued to support children's learning by sharing stories and songs online. They regularly evaluate and review their practice with staff and parents.

The curriculum is well planned and sequenced by staff, who know the children well. They provide children with a broad range of activities, planned around the 'rhythms of the year'. They develop unique experiences to extend what children know and can do.

Staff take swift and effective action to support any children who might be falling behind in their learning. Leaders use any additional funding for children effectively.Children's communication and language skills are very well supported.

Staff interactions with children are of a consistently high quality. Children have time to listen and think during conversations. Babies use words to communicate their needs, such as saying 'more' at mealtimes.

Children who speak English as an additional language have opportunities to use their home language during their play.Children develop a strong love of books as they listen to familiar stories and poems. Staff create cosy areas where children happily relax with favourite books.

Staff read with enthusiasm, allowing children to ask questions and join in with phrases and words. Babies point to and name familiar objects they see in pictures.Exciting and stimulating resources provide children with opportunities to develop their physical skills.

Young children dig enthusiastically in the sand and the mud. Older children challenge their balance and climbing skills as they clamber over logs and tyres. Staff encourage children to move in different ways, such as going on tiptoe or marching when they go out for a walk.

Babies have space to develop their muscles when they roll, crawl, and pull themselves up to stand. Children enjoy healthy, balanced meals together, which is an enjoyable and social time for them.There is a strong focus on children developing their problem-solving skills, such as building towers or posting shapes in a shape sorter.

However, staff do not consistently recognise children's growing awareness of mathematics in their environment. They often miss chances to extend children's mathematical vocabulary while they play.Children make good friendships.

Staff encourage them to share their interests and to accept one another's needs. For instance, children love to hear how their friend plays her musical instrument. They are polite and respectful.

Staff are calm and reassuring, which supports children to regulate their emotions.Parents praise the care their children receive. Staff keep parents informed about their children's learning on an online journal and by speaking with them every day.

Parents comment on the lovely relationships children have made with staff.Leaders provide regular training, supervision and feedback to staff. Staff well-being and professional development is important to them.

Staff feel respected and supported in the nursery. They enjoy working in the welcoming environment and fully embrace the vision and ethos of the leaders.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

Leaders create a safe and secure environment for all children. Staff are well trained to recognise the signs of abuse and know what to do if they have concerns about the welfare and safety of children. There are policies in place to ensure the timely sharing of records with other professionals when required.

Robust recruitment procedures ensure all staff are suitable to work with children. Staff understand wider safeguarding issues within their community and society. For instance, they know what to do if they are concerned about children's exposure to extreme views.

They help children learn about keeping themselves safe in meaningful ways. For example, as children spend a lot of time outside, they learn not to pick berries by themselves.

What does the setting need to do to improve?

To further improve the quality of the early years provision, the provider should: support staff to deliver the mathematics curriculum more effectively, to further enhance children's understanding of numbers, counting and mathematical concepts.