Constantine School

House
Nursery Prospectus

54 Constantine Road
Colchester
CO3 3DX
Tel: 01206 76 81 30
Email: info@constantineschoolhouse.co.uk
Web: www.constantineschoolhouse.co.uk

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Our setting:
Constantine School House was registered on 24th April 2012, and opened in
June. We are registered to care for 34 children between 2-4 years of age. The
nursery is privately owned and managed by the principal.

The nursery operates from a converted house with a large enclosed rear garden
available for outdoor play where free-flow is encouraged. We are close to
Colchester town, and conveniently situated for parents who work in the centre
or wish to commute.

Our nursery has a large classroom downstairs which is set up for the younger
children. It is flooded with light through the sash bay windows. The downstairs
room offers the younger children space to engage in role play, free-choice
activities and provides the resources to help children learn through both play
and structured, adult-led activities. This room leads to a creative area where
children can access sensory materials such as sand, water and soil, as well as art
materials to design and create masterpieces. At the rear we have a conservatory
which acts as a Montessori classroom and changing area.

The first floor is designed for our preschool children preparing for school. All
children have access to toys and equipment, and we believe children should
make their own choices about the resources they choose and lead their own
learning path. This is done in a sensitive way, and trained staff intervene in this
learning when required, in order to enhance and develop every child’s
educational experience. Montessori can be seen throughout the three small
rooms upstairs and one has been specially designed to cater for small groups
and individual teaching.

During free-flow children have the opportunity to access the outdoor play area
which contributes to their health, physical development and knowledge of the
world. Although all areas of the Early Years Curriculum are covered in our
large outdoor environment.

Our Aim:
At Constantine School House we aim to provide a high quality early years
environment, and excellent continuity of care for all children who attend the
nursery. We hope to achieve this by ensuring all children feel safe and secure in
a calm and friendly atmosphere. We believe in providing a stimulating and
well-structured educational setting, so we can offer the best start for children in
preparing them for life’s challenges.

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Staff and qualifications:
Senior Management Team
• Collette Wood-Principal BA Hons with Qualified Teacher Status
and BTEC National Diploma in Advanced Childcare Studies
• Nicki Kyprianou-Deputy Manager International Diploma in Montessori
Pedagogy Level 3

Nursery Room Team
• Kayleigh Martin CACHE Level 3 Diploma in Childcare & Education
• Sabine Boley CACHE Level 3 Diploma in Childcare & Education
(Maternity Leave)
• Amie Sykes Level 3 Diploma in Childcare & Education
• Donna Payne International Diploma in Montessori Pedagogy Level 4

Pre-School Team
• Lauren Webber – Room Leader CACHE Level 3 Children and Young
Persons Workforce.
• Adriana Hernandez Haslip CACHE Level 3 Diploma in Childcare
and Education. Spanish Tutor.
• Sarah Rolt BTec National Diploma Level 3
• Alice Carpinter French Tutor & nursery assistant

Training:
As a minimum all staff have completed safe-guarding children level 1 training
and 12 hour paediatric First Aid. Most have Epi-pen training and have
completed a food hygiene course.

Suitability and Vetting:
The staff are fully vetted, all with enhanced DBS checks. Each staff member
has the relevant qualification needed to care for and educate young children.
The team work closely with each other, the children and the parents to provide a
first class nursery experience for your child.

Opening Hours:
Constantine School House is open between the hours of 7.30am – 6.30pm
Monday to Friday, for 51 weeks of the year. It closes for all bank and public
holidays, and some days between Christmas and New Year. We offer a school
day 9am-4pm and a full day 7.30am-6.30pm.

Late Collection:
The nursery closes promptly each day at 6.30pm. If your child is not collected on
time, our legal liability relating to the staff/child ratio will be infringed as two
members of staff must remain at the nursery until the last child has been collected.
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Any parent/carer who is late collecting their child will have to pay a charge which
helps to cover the additional staffing costs incurred for this reason. The charge is £10
per 30 minutes. If after 6.30pm a charge of £10 every 15 minutes will apply. This will
be added to your bill.

Registration and Contracts:
Once you have agreed to take up a place for your child/ren you will be asked to
complete registration documents, pay the admission/registration fee and you will
issued with a parent contract.
We do not offer term time only contracts.

Termination of Registration and Contract:
This may occur when
The child has reached the age limit
If despite all our best efforts a child fails to settle a contact may be terminated with
immediate effect (this will be at the sole discretion of the nursery manager)
Parents/carers wishing to terminate their contract must give four weeks’ notice in
writing to the Nursery Manager. If a child has to leave in exceptional circumstances,
the notice period will be at the sole discretion of the Nursery Manager

Notice of Absence:
If a child is not brought to the nursery on a day when s/he is normally present, the
parents/carers must inform the Manager of the absence and the expected date of
return. If for any reason, such as illness, a child cannot be brought to the nursery
when s/he would normally be present, parents/carers are required to pay the normal
fees.

Fees:
A non-refundable admission fee of £35 is required when applying for a place at the
nursery. This covers all administration costs that are incurred during admission and
settling in sessions.

The fees are set at differential rates for two year olds, and children who are three and
above due to staff child ratio.

Fees are payable monthly in advance. Parents/carers paying their fees by cheque are
required to write their child’s name on the back of their cheque. Fees are payable in
cases of absence and there is no reduction for sickness or holidays taken during any
week the nursery is open.

Policies:
A full copy of the settings policies and procedures will be made available through
initial visits, but they are also available upon request to a senior member of staff at
any time.

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Meals and Snacks:
Hot Meals are provided and Lunch is served between 12pm-1pm. Menus are on
display throughout the nursery.
A copy of a sample menu
Day Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
Main Meal Lasagne Fish Sausage, Vegetable Cheese and
and salad fingers, mash & peas curry onion pie
new Served with with rice served with
potatoes gravy seasonal
and peas vegetables
Vegetarian Quorn Vegetable Quorn
Option lasagne fingers sausage
Served with
vegetarian
gravy

Tea consists of the following options:
Crumpets, beans on toast, tea-cakes, omelette, cheese/sausage rolls, pizza, soup and
sandwiches with various fillings.

Snacks
The children are offered a wide variety of fruits and vegetables often accompanied
with a carbohydrate, such as a breadstick, or rice cake for each snack. Snacks are
served with organic milk or filtered water.

Nursery Education Grant:
All parents will be entitled to apply for 15 hours free childcare under the nursery
education grant funding. This can only be applied for the term after your child’s 3rd
birthday. It is received 3 times a year through their local government and is only paid
for 38 weeks of the years, therefore full fee will apply for the remaining 14 weeks.
There is eligibility for 2 year old funding that is criteria based, please speak to a senior
member of staff or ask to see a copy of the criteria for more details.

Safeguarding:
Safeguarding children is our utmost priority. Parents/carers and visitors to the setting
can only gain access to the building once they have verified who they are through the
security intercom system. At times we may also request a password. We will only
release a child to the parent/carer who is named on the enrolment/registration form,
unless prior notification has been given by the parent/carer in accordance with our
policies and procedures. For further information on how we ensure children are
safeguarded please see our Safeguarding policy.
“Arrangements for safeguarding children are robust. Effective systems for risk
assessing the premises, indoors and outdoors, ensures that children play and learn on
a safe, secure and stimulating environment.” Ofsted October 2012

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Complaints:
We have a robust complaints procedure and we display a copy of the Ofsted parent
poster on our display board in the entrance hallway that includes the address and
telephone for Ofsted. You may request to have your own copy or visit the Ofsted
website where it can be downloaded and printed off. You will also be given a
complaint form however we hope that any concerns will be discussed verbally and
dealt with promptly and with ease.

Equal Opportunities/Inclusion:
Constantine School House is committed to the inclusion of all children. Each child is
treated as a unique individual and all receive the same opportunities and rights as each
other. Children will have the opportunity to learn about the world around them where
we reflect upon the wider community within the resources and activities that are
provided.

Health and Safety:
Constantine School House is registered with the fire department and Environmental
Health, who make regular unscheduled visits throughout the year.

Curriculum:
At Constantine School House we abide by the Statutory Welfare requirements and the
Learning and Development requirements set out in the 2014 Early Years Foundation
Stage publication. This document has been published and can be found on the
Department for Education website www.dfe.gov.uk. We use this framework to
support and enhance children’s learning and development holistically through play
based activities.
In providing high quality educational equipment, which includes Montessori learning
materials, we aim to help children to work to, and to achieve a high standard, so that
each child leaving us at school age will have all the necessary skills they need. These
include basic phonics and word building, and basic numeracy skills such as number
recognition, shape and quantity. This can be made possible by working in partnership
with parents/carers, and the continual professional development undertaken by all
staff members.

Our planning is based upon each individual child. We use the child’s interest as a
starting point to plan activities based upon the Prime and Specific areas of the
‘Development Matters’ (Department for Education document). This aids our
assessment and tracking of each child. We provide both child, and adult led activities
throughout the day. Highly-skilled staff continually observe their key children, and
make assessments based on what they hear and see. We will then provide tailor made
activities based on those observations which inform future planning and draw on
children’s needs and interests. A personalised record of each child’s development is
kept in learning journals and tracker wheels for our records and to share with
parents/carers that show abilities, interest, progress and areas that we are working on
next.

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Our aim is to support all children to attain their maximum potential within their
individual capabilities and to ensure that all children have equality of access to
learning opportunities as they investigate and learn through play. The older children
are supported in both play and structured learning. The activities are uniquely tailored
to each child’s needs, and monitored to ensure children’s continuing development.
Children’s whose first language is not English will have full access to the curriculum
and are supported in their learning.

“Children are fully engaged in purposeful and exciting activities throughout their
day” Ofsted October 2012

The nursery offers Spanish classes to those children who wish to take part. Adriana
makes learning foreign languages fun, and the children learn basic words and phrases.
They learn songs and rhymes in small groups.

We positively encourage good manners and social etiquette where we aim to create an
environment of mutual respect and tolerance. With the use of Montessori materials,
the children learn to become independent, and to respect other children, staff and the
equipment within the nursery. Every child’s personal, social and emotional needs are
catered for where all children are treated as individuals. This helps children to develop
a sense of trust where they feel valued and good about themselves. Children are
encouraged to develop positive attitudes to people who are different from them. This
promotes empathy and encourages children to become aware of others feelings and
needs, whilst remaining a part of a cohesive social group.

“Children are keen, excited and motivated to learn. They are very independent and
naturally curious. They show high levels of imagination.” Ofsted October 2012

Outdoor Play:
At Constantine School House we are committed to the importance of outdoor play and
physical development in all children regardless of their age and stage of development.
All activities will be made accessible to children with learning difficulties and
disabilities to ensure all children are able to freely and independently use the outdoor
area and physical play opportunities to best effect.

Children need regular access to outdoor play in order to develop their fine and gross
motor skills and experience an environment that is different to the inside of the
nursery and more importantly access sunlight in order to create vitamin D more
effectively.

The outdoor area at the nursery provides children with a range of different resources
that will engage and excite them. Children will develop in a variety of ways, including
independence, exploration and investigative skills, risk taking and self-esteem all of
which support children to develop skills for now and the future.

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The nursery will ensure all areas are safe and secure through close supervision and the
use of robust risk assessments and safety checks. Staff are informed of the importance
of these procedures and are trained appropriately to ensure these procedures are
followed effectively.

All outdoor play opportunities and outings will complement the indoor activities and
provide children with both adult-led and child-initiated opportunities to enable
children to learn and practice new skills, knowledge and behaviours.

Key Person:
Each child has a key person who are responsible for meeting their needs. They form a
close relationship within the setting and ensure the child’s personal, social and
emotional needs are met, as well as supporting and liaising effectively with the child’s
family. The key person keeps up to date records and is responsible for maintaining the
learning journals of their key children.

Free settling in sessions are arranged to help you and your child settle well. These will
be arranged on a day when your child’s key person is in attendance.

“A well-organised key person system ensures that children have a secure base from
which to explore” Ofsted October 2012

Clothing:
The nursery requests that each child is provided with a complete change of clothes. It
is an essential component of educative play that children are able to enjoy art and craft
activities. Inevitably children will transfer some of these materials to themselves and
their clothing. We attempt as far as possible to purchase glue, paste and paint which
are "washable", but in practice not everything will wash off all clothing materials.
Parents should therefore dress their children with this in mind. Children are also
encouraged to engage in outdoor play on a daily basis. Children do enjoy activities
that are messy such as our mud kitchen and also water play, therefore we may need to
change a child’s clothes during the day. Constantine School House will accept no
liability for clothing damaged while the child is at the nursery. All removable clothing
such as coats, jackets and hats must be named.
Children are expected to wear slippers when inside. Either shoes OR wellington
boots should be provided for outdoor play. These items must be taken home at the
end of each day due to lack of storage and space within the setting.

Personal Property:
Children should not bring sweets or valuables to the nursery as staff cannot be held
responsible for any personal belongings being lost or damaged.

Rest and sleep:
Children are able to rest and sleep whenever they need to, in accordance with parental
wishes.
For a full copy of our Ofsted inspection report please read at www.ofsted.gov.uk Our Ofsted URN is EY444486

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Constantine School House
Guide to Montessori
This booklet has been designed for parents and carers of children who attend our
nursery. Its purpose is to offer more information about the curriculum we currently
follow at Constantine School House.

Dr Maria Montessori was one of the most influential pioneers in early childhood
education in the 20th century. Her ideas have become know and recognised throughout
the world.

‘The secret of good teaching is to regard the children’s intelligence as a fertile field in
which seeds are sown, to grow under the heat of flaming imagination. We do not want
complacent pupils but eager ones; we seek to sow life in children rather than theories,
to help them in their growth, mental and emotional as well as physical.’

Dr Maria Montessori

Dr Montessori was born in Italy in 1870. Her original interest was in medicine; she
was the first woman to graduate from the University Of Rome Medical School and
gradually became interested in education. She approached education as a scientist,
working with some of the poorest and most disadvantaged children in Rome. She
observed the children and from there, developed her ideas and materials to help the
children achieve their full potential. Her theories were tailored to the developmental
needs of the growing child, but they also spring from Montessori’s intense love and
respect for all children.

All children, says Montessori, are intrinsically motivated to learn and they absorb
knowledge without effort when provided with the right kind of activities at the right
time in their development. She believed children have an innate sensitivity towards
their own development. What we often call play is a child’s work. At Constantine
School House we encourage children to ‘work’ independently, on a on to one with
staff and in groups. We provide resources and activities to develop the children’s
independence in order to maximise their developmental abilities. This ethos runs
through the EYFS too.

The Montessori philosophy is unique in that it recognises the vital importance of
individual freedom, but that freedom itself requires structure. We give our children
freedom in the activities that they can choose to do during the day. The classrooms are
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carefully laid out, and the upstairs ‘School Room’ is split into two to provide a more
structured room and a more creative room. Both the Nursery and the School rooms are
set out to provide safe, exciting and welcoming spaces in which children rapidly feel
secure and at home.

We see nursery education and care very much as a partnership between us and
parents/carers. It is important to us that the children feel happy and the parent/carer
feels confident with the care we provide. We want everyone’s experience to be a
positive one.

Copies of the EYFS are available online. Just search for Statutory Framework for the
Early Years Foundation Stage. Our staff are also more than happy to discuss the
framework with parents, especially their key children’s parents/carers.

Below is some information about the different aspects of, and activities and materials
we use when offering the Montessori Method of teaching.

The Practical Life Area:
The young child is attracted to activities that he/she sees going on around him/her, and
that give him/her independence and control of his/her own life. The objectives of this
area is for the child to develop concentration, independence and co-ordination of
movement. These exercises are divided into four areas:

Increasing mastery and co-ordination of movement e.g. pouring and spooning.

Care of the environment e.g. sweeping and washing.

Care of the person e.g. buttoning, polishing and fastening devises.
Grace and courtesy e.g. greeting people, conduct in the classroom and looking after
others.

These are the simple, routine tasks which we perform each day.
These activities help children refine existing skills, and acquire new skills.
The activities are non-threatening as they are familiar to them from their home
environment. Therefore giving a child emotional security on entering a new
environment.
They encourage independence, concentration, order and self-discipline.

Pouring activities – Children learn to pour their own and other’s drinks.
Opening & Closing activities – Children learn this skill in order to use it when
required in their lives.
All the practical life activities develop and refine manipulative skills. They also help
children become more independent and to be able to do things for themselves, which
builds their confidence.

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The activities for grace and courtesy introduce social skills and will enable children to
operate successfully in an adult environment.
The activities for care of the environment develop skills, which allow the child to
exert some control over their environment by caring for it. The children realise that
they are responsible for their own environment and this encourages a sense of
community and belonging.

The Sensorial Area
The objective of this area are for the child to develop and refine his/her senses so that
they become keen observers and more aware of themselves and the world. Many
exercises in this area are also indirect preparations for later mathematics and literacy
work as they enable the child to order, classify, seriate and describe sensory
impressions in relation to length, width, mass and colour.
The nursery has a selection of sensorial materials these include…

Knobbed Cylinders
Refines the child’s visual perception of dimension. It provides a controlled
experience of seriation (sequence, order, position in a series). Teaches the child basic
mathematical vocabulary. It refines the co-ordination of movement and the fine motor
skills. It is an in-direct activity for preparation for writing (pincer grip) and for
mathematics (grading/comparison).

Pink Tower
Refines the child’s visual perception of dimension. It provides a controlled
experience of seriation (sequence, order, position in a series). Teaches the child basic
mathematical vocabulary. It refines the co-ordination of movement and the fine motor
skills. It is an in-direct activity for preparing for mathematics (grading/comparison).

Broad Stair
Refines the child’s visual perception of dimension. It provides a controlled
experience of seriation (sequence, order, position in a series). Teaches the child basic
mathematical vocabulary. It refines the co-ordination of movement and the fine motor
skills. It is an in-direct activity for preparing for mathematics (grading/comparison).

Long Rods
Refines the child’s visual perception of dimension. It provides a controlled
experience of seriation (sequence, order, position in a series). Teaches the child basic
mathematical vocabulary. It refines the co-ordination of movement and the fine motor
skills. It is an in-direct activity for preparing for mathematics (grading/comparison).

Knobless Cylinders
Refines the child’s visual perception of dimension. It provides a controlled
experience of seriation (sequence, order, position in a series). Teaches the child basic
mathematical vocabulary. It refines the co-ordination of movement and the fine motor
skills. It is an in-direct activity for preparing for mathematics (grading/comparison).

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The Mathematics Area
Montessori keeps the work at a concrete level with the development of the
mathematical mind. Hand and mind work together to help the child learn by ‘doing’,
then they move from concrete to abstract. This area covers an understanding of basics
such as numbers and quantity, shapes and length. The materials for mathematics
introduce the concept of quantity and symbols 0-9 and beyond. Then using a variety
of beads and symbol cards, the child becomes familiar with the numbers as a decimal
system. Simple addition and subtraction, multiplication and division are learnt. These
activities not only teach a child to calculate, but they provide a deep understanding of
how numbers function. Other areas covered include money, time and measurement.

Examples of resources include sandpaper numerals, the spindle box, cards and
counter, long and number rods.

The Literacy Area:
Through the practical life and sensorial materials the Montessori child has a great deal
of indirect preparation for language and literacy work. When a child is ready we begin
to teach the phonetic sounds of the letters using the sandpaper letters. We move on to
word building and reading by introducing the large moveable alphabet and the pink
boxes. This links in with the pink reading books. This cycle is repeated with the blue
boxes which have slightly harder words. We can then move on to explore the blends,
nouns, singular and plural boxes.

Writing comes as part of a child’s natural desire to express his/her new knowledge.
Constantine School House contains lots of opportunities for children to mark make,
write and practise their pencil control. We have a wide range of fiction and non-fiction
books for the children to access. The children are encouraged to both read and share
them for their enjoyment, and listen to them with others.

Examples of materials we use in the nursery include the large moveable alphabet,
sandpaper letters, pink, blue and green language boxes, sentence strips insets for
design, and reading books to accompany the pink series. We also have the Oxford
Reading Tree series used in many schools.

The Cultural Area:
Our cultural area helps the children to increase their knowledge and understanding of
science, geography, botany, zoology and history. Children gain an awareness of the
world around them by exploring countries, customs, foods, climates, language and
animals. The Montessori materials continent puzzle maps, continent boxes, time lines
and animal habitats. This encourages an appreciation for all living things.

The nursery offers a different activity each afternoon. These include yoga and
meditation, music and movement, theatre and role play, arts and crafts and finally
forest school and team games.
Our priority is the individual happiness and development of the children in our care.

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