The Acorn Room at Hillside

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About The Acorn Room at Hillside

Name The Acorn Room at Hillside
Ofsted Inspections
Address Hillside Nursery School, Cedar Avenue, Haslingden, Rossendale, BB4 5NH
Phase Childcare on Non-Domestic Premises, Sessional day care
Gender Mixed
Local Authority Lancashire
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this early years setting?

The provision is good

Children arrive happy and ready to explore this calming, nurturing environment. They are greeted with a friendly smile, and they separate easily from their parents.

Staff have a lovely manner with the children. They sensitively respond to children's gestures, babbles and vocalisations to encourage early communication. Collections of resources are at low levels, allowing children to access materials independently.

This allows them to take charge of their own play. Treasure baskets and practical, hands-on play opportunities allow babies to explore their senses and develop problem-solving skills.Staff have high expectatio...ns of children and encourage independence from an early age.

Young toddlers try to put on their own wellies and coats to go outside to play. Children love to play outdoors, walking around the nature trail and taking notice of the environment around them. They enjoy the freedom to roll down the low slopes and lie on the grass, looking up at the sky.

Staff work closely with parents to implement routines that suit the individual child, such as feeding and sleeping times. Staff share information about the child's learning in the setting and how parents can support and extend their learning at home.

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

Leaders implement a progressive, enquiry-based curriculum.

It focuses on the image of the child and their journey to mastery across the setting. As such, the aspirations for achievement across all areas are high.Leaders embed the curriculum across the setting.

Children have individualised activities, which reflect their needs and interests. This helps children to engage and enjoy activities set for them. Staff are effective in encouraging children to try things for themselves instead of doing it for them.

As such, children show curiosity and resilience in reaching their goals.Children join in with familiar songs and rhymes and anticipate what is coming next. Staff provide a narrative for children's play, asking questions and offering meaning to new words.

This is one of the ways staff promote children's speech and language and develop their communication skills.Staff provide continuous access to the large, outdoor play area. This is equipped with an array of climbing equipment, slopes and free space for them to move around.

As a result, children have many opportunities to practice their physical skills. This helps them to develop strength and movement and promotes their well-being.Leaders and staff promote children's emotional health and well-being.

They encourage even the youngest children to talk about their feelings and emotions. Staff use age-appropriate stories and puppets to help young children to communicate if they are feeling happy or sad. They also talk about how their friends feel and how to make them feel better.

This is one of the ways staff support children to develop empathy and compassion.Leaders promote literacy through their planning. Staff focus on key texts each half term, which provides the opportunity for children to really become familiar with the story.

Children learn repeating phrases and explore activities linked to the story. For example, they create a farmyard using different materials so that they can explore sounds and textures. Children become truly immersed in the story and develop a love of books.

Leaders and staff work closely with parents to gather information about the child's learning. This helps staff to gain a picture of the child's abilities and possible next steps on entry to the setting. Children's progress is monitored regularly to identify any gaps in their learning and to celebrate their achievements.

Staff enhance the provision to help fill any gaps and ensure all children make progress, regardless of their starting points.Supervision and appraisals are carried out regularly across the year. Leaders support staff to identify areas of strength and areas where their practice could be improved.

However, in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, there have been significant staff changes. Leaders support the development of the staff team through modelling, coaching and training techniques to share their vision and help them to improve their practice. They draw on the strengths of the team to enhance the quality of provision and strengthen learning.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.Staff are fully aware of their responsibilities in relation to keeping children safe. They know the signs and symptoms of abuse and know how to report any concerns about a child.

They are familiar with the whistle-blowing procedure and confident in using it to report concerns. Risk assessments are in place and the setting is well maintained and secure. Hygiene is paramount, and regular cleaning takes place.

Leaders implement effective procedures to record illness or injury to a child. They follow public health guidance on infection control to ensure minimal risk from infection or cross-contamination.

What does the setting need to do to improve?

To further improve the quality of the early years provision, the provider should: continue to develop the staff team to strengthen the quality of teaching to an even higher level.

Also at this postcode
Hillside Nursery School

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