Little Houghton Playgroup

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About Little Houghton Playgroup

Name Little Houghton Playgroup
Ofsted Inspections
Address Sargeant Memorial Hall, Church Lane, Brafield On The Green, Northampton, Northamptonshire, NN7 1BA
Phase Childcare on Non-Domestic Premises, Sessional day care
Gender Mixed
Local Authority WestNorthamptonshire
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this early years setting?

The provision is good

Children thoroughly enjoy their time at this setting. They separate from their parents at the door. Children rush in to find their friends and are welcomed by cheery, friendly staff.

Staff are very attentive to children and know their needs extremely well. This helps children to feel secure, form positive relationships with staff and develop a good sense of belonging. The environment is well resourced to enable children to make independent choices about what they want to do while at playgroup.

Children enjoy learning, both indoors and outdoors. Staff have high expectations for children's learning and behaviour. Consequ...ently, children behave very well.

Staff plan a stimulating curriculum that takes account of children's interests and learning needs. Staff use planned and spontaneous activities to support children to extend what they already know. For example, children choose to play with the bricks on the floor.

Staff talk to them about houses, flats and other buildings. Children learn that blocks of flats are taller than houses. Children learn to share and take turns with their friends.

They share their ideas and knowledge when they talk to one another and work together to build and construct train tracks. They are developing strong friendships with each other.

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

Parents are overwhelmingly positive about the playgroup.

They comment that the staff are approachable, extremely friendly and exceptionally knowledgeable. Parents particularly appreciate the level of communication they receive. For example, staff update parents about children's development and share information about what children will learn about next.

Parents attribute their children's social skills and language development to the time spent at the playgroup.Staff plan an exciting curriculum for children. They skilfully support them to develop their vocabulary and communication skills as they play.

Staff talk with children about 'crossroads' and 'junctions', and they develop an understanding of positional language, such as 'in front' and 'behind'.Staff encourage children to develop their mathematical understanding. For example, children compare straight and curved train tracks and estimate which is the longest.

Staff introduce children to scientific concepts. They connect the magnetic trains together and learn about how magnets repel and attract.Staff observe children to find out what they can already do.

They use planned and spontaneous activities to consolidate children's learning. For example, when children line up to go outside, staff ask them who is 'in front' and who is 'behind'. Children exclaim, 'Me! I'm behind'.

Children enjoy being outside. They run and jump, ride wheeled vehicles and play in the sand. They develop physical skills that build over time.

For example, they enjoy chasing after hoops that staff have rolled for them and having a go at rolling the hoops for themselves.Staff are patient and support children to learn how to keep themselves safe. For example, because the grass is long and slippery, staff encourage the children to take care as they move between the grass and the playground.

Children are generally encouraged to be independent. Younger children are sometimes prompted to take themselves to the toilet with little help. All children wash their hands before returning to play.

Children have a go at managing their coats and wellington boots. However, sometimes, staff do things for children that they could do on their own. For example, after painting, staff wipe the children's hands.

At snack time, staff pour drinks and serve the children's food. Sometimes, staff wipe children's noses rather than encouraging them to manage their own self-care.The management team has an established partnership that enables them to work exceptionally well together.

The management team knows what the playgroup does well and has a good understanding of how to implement changes that impact their day-to-day running. For example, the playgroup remained open during the COVID-19 pandemic because of the clear commitment the setting has to children and families within the community. Staff are happy here.

They comment that it is a friendly, happy place to work.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.Staff and leaders have a very good understanding of safeguarding.

Staff implement clear safety measures, indoors and outdoors, to ensure children are kept safe. Staff complete relevant training to ensure that their knowledge of safeguarding and child protection is current and up to date. They are aware of the signs and indicators of when a child may be at risk of harm.

They know how to record their concerns and who to report them to. The setting has a process in place to ensure that all staff are fully vetted and are suitable to work with children.

What does the setting need to do to improve?

To further improve the quality of the early years provision, the provider should: develop staff's understanding of how to consistently promote and support children's independence.

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