First Steps Nursery

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About First Steps Nursery

Name First Steps Nursery
Ofsted Inspections
Address Robson Way, Lowton, Nr. Warrington, Cheshire, WA3 2RD
Phase Childcare on Non-Domestic Premises, Full day care
Gender Mixed
Local Authority Wigan
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this early years setting?

The provision is good

Children separate from their parents with ease. They appear happy and eager to start their day in the safe and secure environment.

Staff give children clear instructions and guidance. They speak to children with respect and allow children to make their own choices throughout the day. As a result, children are confident, take turns and play well together.

Children's behaviour is good. Children are curious and show excitement as they explore activities that have been carefully set up to spark their interest. For example, children use scissors to cut herbs.

They explore with water as they make marks on the floor ...and carefully add it to mixtures to make potions. This results in children showing an eagerness to learn more as they keenly explore the rich and stimulating environment, both inside and outside.The nursery closed for a short period during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Since then the impact on children's development has been closely monitored. As a result, a greater emphasis has been put on children's social and emotional development for those who have had fewer opportunities to socialise. More flexibility with settling-in sessions is now given to support children's individual needs.

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

The leadership team and staff work well together. They share their knowledge and skills to support children's development and have a clear vision for improvements that are needed. Staff report that they feel valued and supported.

They complete additional training and share ideas to develop the nursery further. For example, they have focused on supporting and extending children's curiosity, imagination and exploration of more natural materials. This has resulted in children being engaged and extremely engrossed in their chosen activity.

The special educational needs coordinator and staff monitor children's development and identify any areas that may need additional support. They work closely with parents and other professionals to ensure that children's needs are recognised. This helps ensure that all children, including those with special educational needs and/or disabilities are making the best possible progress.

A well-sequenced curriculum is in place. Staff have a clear understanding of what children can do and overall provide great learning opportunities to help support their future learning. However, at times, staff are too quick to offer solutions to problems that children encounter.

On these occasions, children are not challenged sufficiently to encourage them to fully develop their play and think critically.Communication with parents is good. Managers and staff use a range of methods to provide updates, such as verbal discussion, online posts and notice boards.

Furthermore, parents are encouraged to be involved and are provided with resource packs for home-learning opportunities to take place. This helps further support children's development and continuous learning.Generally, staff support children's communication and language well.

They interact with children introducing them to new words. In addition to this, staff repeat words and use recall to assess and reinforce children's understanding. However, some staff do not consistently use skilful questioning techniques.

They ask too many questions and do not always give children sufficient time to think and respond.Children's independence is promoted well. For instance, younger children are encouraged to wipe their face and older children carry out their own toileting needs.

Good hygiene practices are in place. Children understand the importance of washing their hands. Furthermore, children learn about oral hygiene and healthy food choices.

This helps support children with the skills they will need in readiness for school and raises their awareness of leading a healthy lifestyle.Children develop a love of books and reading from a young age. Staff use annotation and read with enthusiasm, capturing children's attention.

Younger children are encouraged to make sounds and join in. Older children repeat words and talk about what is happening. This is further supported with additional props and real objects to help extend children's imagination.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.Staff have a secure knowledge and understanding of how to safeguard children. They confidently discuss the policies and procedures to follow in the event of them having any concerns.

Effective staff deployment means that all children are well supervised and cared for. The premises are safe and secure. Regular risk assessments are carried out and any minor hazards or risks identified are quickly removed.

Ongoing suitability checks are regularly carried out. This ensures that all staff working with children are safe to do so.

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 further enhance children's play, to ensure that they encourage them to think critically and solve problems as they encounter them build on the already good use of questioning and allow children more time to process their own thoughts and ideas.

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