St Ives Nursery

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About St Ives Nursery

Name St Ives Nursery
Ofsted Inspections
Address Eastwood House, Needingworth Road, St. Ives, PE27 5JP
Phase Childcare on Non-Domestic Premises
Gender Mixed
Local Authority Cambridgeshire
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this early years setting?

The provision is good

Children demonstrate that they feel settled and secure in this nurturing nursery. They receive a warm welcome from friendly staff who show a genuine interest in the children and their families. Consequently, children enter the setting confidently and seek out staff to share their news.

Children benefit from a wide choice of sensory play experiences. For example, they explore slime and tell visitors that 'it's sticky' as they slide their hands into the tray. Children have plenty of opportunities to develop their self-care skills and independence.

Babies enjoy helping to pour their drinks and wipe their hands following s...nack. Older children independently access water throughout the day and clean their dishes following lunch. Children learn to be kind and considerate as they follow the examples set by staff.

They learn to play happily together and receive gentle support when they find turn-taking difficult. Staff are ambitious for all children. They work closely with families and other agencies to provide additional support when this is needed.

All children, including those with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND), make good progress. During the COVID-19 pandemic, staff provided activities and kept in regular contact with families. They posted videos of themselves singing rhymes and reading stories to remain familiar to children.

Consequently, children settled back into the nursery quickly.

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

Leaders and managers are ambitious for the nursery. They regularly review the provision to enhance children's experiences.

Staff report high levels of well-being and support, including regular supervision sessions and opportunities to develop their interests. Staff meetings are held to share learning from training with the whole staff team. Staff receive regular feedback about their areas of strength.

However, the manager has not yet established a highly effective method for feeding back areas for improvement to raise the quality of teaching to an even higher level.Parents speak very highly of the staff at the nursery. They value the regular feedback they receive and suggestions for extending children's learning at home.

Parents describe the staff as 'nurturing' and 'approachable'.The manager and staff have a clear understanding of what children need to learn across all areas of the curriculum. There is a strong emphasis on communication and language development.

For example, staff have recently participated in a baby-room project that has led to the introduction of simple sign language to aid communication. This is extended across the nursery and children of all ages are encouraged to use Makaton sign language to support the development of their spoken language.Children with SEND have tailored support to help them to make progress.

The manager and staff identify children with SEND through their assessments. They work with parents and other professionals to ensure a suitable curriculum is put in place.Staff understand the value of books and use them to support teaching.

For instance, children listen attentively to the story 'The Three Little Pigs', before exploring farm animals with shredded paper. Staff make reference to the story while the children play. Children notice similarities between the paper and the straw in the story.

This promotes children's understanding that books are a source of information.Staff help children understand the nursery's simple rules and routines. They recognise that children have had less opportunity to mix with others due to COVID-19 restrictions.

Group times are positive learning experiences which are a good preparation for school. For example, children follow staff's instructions and use lavender as a sensory experience to produce a calm and focused atmosphere.Staff use planned activities to teach children skills across the wider curriculum.

For example, during a planting activity, staff encourage children to count the seeds they collect. Children compare the shapes and sizes of fruit they harvest. Staff encourage children to remember and they confidently share what they have previously learned and how activities link together.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.Managers take their safeguarding duties very seriously. They follow a robust recruitment procedure.

Managers ensure that all staff receive regular safeguarding training. They ensure that staff have understood the information shared through training and supervisions by setting safeguarding questions and scenarios during monthly staff meetings. Staff clearly explain what would cause them to be concerned about a child and wider safeguarding issues, such as county lines.

Staff are clear about how to raise concerns, including should they have a concern about another member of staff. Staff risk assess areas regularly.

What does the setting need to do to improve?

To further improve the quality of the early years provision, the provider should: provide staff with more accurate performance feedback to raise the quality of education to an even higher level.

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