Kittens Pre-School

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About Kittens Pre-School

Name Kittens Pre-School
Ofsted Inspections
Address Veronica Street, DARWEN, Lancashire, BB3 0AF
Phase Childcare on Non-Domestic Premises, Full day care
Gender Mixed
Local Authority BlackburnwithDarwen
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this early years setting?

The provision is good

Children are happy in the welcoming, safe and secure environment. They are well behaved and follow daily routines with confidence. Staff help children understand what is happening next as they enthusiastically sing songs together, such as 'Let's tidy up', to signal changes in the day.

Children participate in a range of activities with encouragement from staff and they make individual choices to lead their own play. For instance, children identify the correct shapes as they create their own pictures of pigs. Children's language skills are well supported.

Staff introduce new vocabulary throughout activities. For example,... when discussing the texture of different materials, staff model words such as 'silky' and 'rough'. Children engage well in group activities, such as music-and-movement games.

During these activities, they apply their attention, turn-taking and listening skills. For instance, children take turns to create their own pattern of movements for their friends to follow. Children think critically and discuss how they can build their tower of shapes.

Children progress well from their initial level of development. They develop increasing independence as they manage their self-care. For example, children wash their hands and collect their own plates during snack time.

Children acquire the skills needed to help prepare them for their move on to school.

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

Staff help build children's confidence to enable them to manage everyday tasks for themselves. For example, children put on their waterproof clothing as they prepare to go outside to play.

Staff provide children with a broad and balanced curriculum. They provide a range of interesting activities. Planning is based on themes that captivate children's curiosity.

For instance, the role-play area has been adapted to 'Goldilocks and the Three Bears'. Staff's purposeful interactions with children help to extend their learning. For example, children discuss the differences between 'big' and 'small' as they compare the size of bowls.

Additionally, children use other available resources, including clipboards, paper and pencils to make meaningful marks, such as the letters of their names.Although staff gather some useful information from parents at the start about what their child can already do, this does not yet include wider information gathering. For example, the outcome of children's two-year progress check, undertaken by the health visitor, to help them support children even better from the outset of placement and help them to make the best possible start.

That said, parents say that staff have been proactive in forging good links with them. Parents receive regular newsletters and are kept up to date with the current theme and are given ideas to extend children's learning at home.Leaders have a clear vision for the pre-school, which the staff team shares.

They provide a stimulating environment inside and outside. Outside, children develop their movement and large-muscle skills. Various climbing resources provide new challenges for children as they grow.

Leaders and staff are reflective and responsive to the changing needs of children and families who attend the pre-school. The manager successfully seeks the views of staff and parents to help identify areas for improvement.Children develop good communication and language skills.

Staff talk to children and encourage them to sing a variety of songs. Additionally, they provide opportunities for children to use different materials to make marks, and help them to enjoy storybooks. Children excitedly recall events and talk with confidence in a group.

Staff are warm and friendly. They support children as they settle in. For example, unsettled children receive one-to-one support, which means that children quickly become happy to attend.

The strong key-person system supports children well in their learning and development by focusing on using children interests. As a result, children engage in activities and are keen to learn. They confidently select tasks and join in activities with adults and other children.

Staff attend team meetings where they discuss and share good practice. The manager works in the room alongside them each day. This enables her to monitor workload and give some informal feedback on their practice.

However, the monitoring of staff's practice does not yet include individualised feedback on how staff can raise the quality of their teaching to the highest levels.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.The environment is safe, and leaders ensure that appropriate measures are in place to reduce risk to children.

Staff regularly attend safeguarding training and have good knowledge of safeguarding procedures and the signs and symptoms of abuse. Staff know how to record and report any concerns they may have about a child's welfare. The provider follows appropriate recruitment and vetting procedures to check staff are suitable to work with children.

The provider failed to notify Ofsted of the appointment of a new director. Ofsted accepts that on this occasion this was an oversight and it does not have an impact on the care of the children.

What does the setting need to do to improve?

To further improve the quality of the early years provision, the provider should: strengthen the procedures for monitoring staff to include giving staff more incisive feedback in order to raise the quality and effectiveness of their practice and teaching to the highest levels gather more-detailed information from parents about their child's development on entry to help shape planning and help children to make even better progress from the outset.

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