Our nursery school receives pupils from the age of two. Hazelwood Nursery is an assessment centre for pre-school children where their visual and other needs are met. Some of our pupils will have a split placement with their local mainstream nursery. After Hazelwood Nursery, many of our pupils stay with us and move to our primary department. Some pupils move to mainstream schools or units.
The nursery department operates within the same hours as the school. However nursery pupils attend for only part of the week. Whilst many other pre-school pupils attend early years establishments for a set number of half days, either morning or afternoon, nursery pupils who attend Hazelwood will attend for between 2-3 whole days.
There has been a wealth of research over the past few decades into how children who have difficulties with learning can be assisted to make sense of their world through structure and predictability. Providing a clear, consistent structure for the children not only helps to develop their memory and sequencing skills, but also increases their sense of security as the routine becomes familiar to them, raising their self-confidence and self-esteem and providing a solid base for future learning.
As well as providing a clear and consistent daily routine for the children, we also want to provide opportunities for them to learn, as all young children do, through active play – exploring, experimenting and discovering for themselves in a range of different contexts and using a wide variety of materials and resources.
In Hazelwood Nursery, we strive to strike the right balance by providing both a clear and consistent structure to the day, as well as lots of opportunities for active learning.
Young children who come to us in the nursery may not necessarily become pupils at the school. One of our areas of expertise is in preparing young children who are blind or have severe visual impairment for mainstream school by working on pre-braille and early braille skills. Early, focused intervention in this area can often provide the support that these children require to make a successful transition to the mainstream primary setting. Our assessment processes will help us to determine the most suitable school placement for each child as they approach school age.
We plan learning experiences to ensure we meet the individual needs of all of our children, taking into account the child’s developmental progress and interests. We use the Pre- Birth to Three Curriculum and A Curriculum for Excellence to plan a range of activities which provide breadth and balance as well as ensuring progression.
Your child will be encouraged to participate in a number of learning experiences within a range of environments, including the outdoors. This includes our outdoor play and learning area as well as our wider local environment. We plan educational outings to support learning and use a variety of locations such as shops, museums and parks.
We understand the importance of using assessment tools which effectively capture critical information about the child. Over the last few years, with support from parents, we have developed our own assessment toolkit. This, together with our in-depth knowledge of each pupil, allows us to assess the learning strengths and learning needs of every individual child in the Nursery so that we can help to plan their future learning pathway.
Ongoing assessment is an integral part of the learning process and we use observations and parental input during our assessments.
Children need to be comfortable and relaxed and we are well aware that the best fun is had when they can mess about and not worry about getting dirty. We provide aprons for art activities, however, accidents happen, so please dress your child in suitable clothes and supply a spare set of clothes which can be stored in nursery. We also ask that outdoor clothing is supplied suitable for the weather e.g. rain jacket, sun hat etc. During better weather and on the rare occasions when we know the sun will be shining we ask that you provide suncream for your child. We will seek your permission to apply this throughout any period where your child is outdoors.
We ask parents to make a contribution of £2 per week to enable us to buy materials and equipment as well as covering the cost of treats and celebrations e.g. Christmas
We are a registered ‘smile too’ nursery and promote good oral hygiene habits by encouraging our children to brush their teeth every day (with adult assistance) in nursery after lunch.
As with all other Nurseries, Hazelwood is regulated through annual inspection by the Care Inspectorate. We value the input from Care Inspectorate and welcome their visit as an opportunity to self-evaluate and improve the service we offer. Our most recent report can be viewed at: InspectionReport-300366 (1)