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Grant Thorold Forest School, Durban Road, Grimsby, DN32 8BX
Childcare on Non-Domestic Premises, Full day care
Highlights from Latest Inspection
What is it like to attend this early years setting?
The provision is outstanding
Children's behaviour is exceptional. They fully understand what is expected of them and show excellent independence from a young age. Children have a deep level of respect and care for each other and adults.
For example, a child explains that his friend likes to eat in another room as he does not like any noise. Children have excellent manners, take turns and help each other in their learning. They learn to handle their emotions and develop a positive mental attitude.
For example, children take part in a calming foot massage session in a room lit by tea lights. They recall previous sessions by demonstrating yoga... poses and explaining how to breathe to help themselves feel calm. This creates a calm environment where children concentrate very well.
Experienced and highly qualified staff provide a well-structured curriculum that builds on what children already know and can do. For example, while reading a story, the children talk about their previous learning. They explain that a dinosaur that eats leaves is called a herbivore, and dinosaur begins with the sound 'd'.
The carefully planned curriculum means that children, including those with special educational needs and/or disabilities, make excellent progress in their learning and development.
What does the early years setting do well and what does it need to do better?
Partnerships with parents are wonderful. Parents comment on the excellent feedback they receive from staff, either in person or electronically.
Parents are grateful that staff provided simple but effective activities for their families during COVID-19 (coronavirus). They believe they were offered sound advice when they needed it the most. One parent commented that they felt privileged that their child attends the setting.
The provider has high expectations and works tirelessly to ensure the children have the very best experiences. She ensures staff have an excellent knowledge of how to use the forest school approach to support children's confidence and development in all areas of learning.The provider's ethos, to ensure children are well settled and to promote their independence, is implemented extremely well by staff.
For example, children happily and capably change their own clothes when wet from playing, and access the toilets independently.Children's communication and language development is given extremely high priority. Staff build on what words children already know by checking that they understand the meaning of a word.
This enhances children's experiences of a book and expands their vocabulary. For example, children use a stick they have collected as a wand, then repeat the spells in the story, using increasingly complex language. Staff consistently model language to children.
They introduce new words and demonstrate them in short sentences. As a result, by the time the children leave the nursery, they have made exceptional progress in their speaking and listening skills.Staff use every moment as an opportunity for learning.
They encourage children to count and recognise amounts and quantities. Staff question children about the size, position and order of objects. This helps children to talk about where to put their artwork, and about size when measuring the length of a stick.
The provider is keenly aware of the impact COVID-19 has had on the children and families. Staff and parents worked together to ensure children were able to have a birthday party in the setting with their peers. This promoted a sense of normality for children during this difficult time.
The provider and staff have created a wonderfully inviting and stimulating environment. They carefully consider and choose the type of resources and equipment and how these are presented to the children. Children show high levels of curiosity and a sense of wonder in their learning.
The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.Staff understand their roles and responsibilities in keeping children safe, including local and wider safeguarding issues. There is a robust training plan in place.
Staff are always up to date with safeguarding training, paediatric first aid and specialist forest school first aid. A rigorous recruitment procedure and carefully planned induction ensure staff's initial and ongoing suitability to work with children. Despite the difficulties posed by COVID-19, staff have been proactive in maintaining regular contact with families and other agencies.
This offered a very high level of protection to children. Children learn how to keep themselves safe. For example, when breaking sticks, they confidently recall staff telling them how to stand on the stick and point it away from themselves.