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If children are to play and learn successfully, they must feel secure and happy in the absence of their parents, knowing that they will return at the end of the session to collect them.  Please don’t worry if your child appears to take longer than others to settle - you are more than welcome to stay and join in.  Time invested now in helping your child to settle will reap dividends later.  The Pre-school has a Settling-in Policy and your child’s key person will discuss any concerns you may have and work with you to help your child settle and enjoy their time at Pre-school.


A list of key persons and their key children (with photos) is on the noticeboard.  Everything is colour coded: Emma/blue; Claire/red, Beth/green, Rhiannon/yellow and Anna/orange.  Rhiannon and Anna work as a pair and usually one is present when the other is absent.  If both are absent, please refer to Beth.  Similarly, Emma and Claire provide back-up for each other.


Children do not need to be out of nappies in order to start at pre-school.  The pre-school is equipped to change children and will work closely with parents when it comes to toilet training.


Please remember to dress your child in suitable clothes and sensible shoes.  Aprons are available but paint and glue may still end up in the wrong place so the code is “dress for mess”.  Children need to be able to move freely for physical play and simple comfortable clothes that they can manage themselves will also be helpful when going to the toilet.  There is a small selection of spare clothes at Pre-school should an accident occur or please include a spare set in your child’s bag.  Children must be wearing a pre-school sweatshirt or T-shirt which can be purchased from the pre-school office. NOTE: Paint and glue can usually be removed by a good soak in cold water. 


Young children are usually more concerned with the “doing” than the end result so please welcome everything they have built, painted or created.  Do not be surprised or disappointed if your child does not bring anything home as he/she has no doubt been very busy with other activities and their keyperson will be happy to share this with you.  Please do not worry if your child does not appear to be playing with other children at first.  It is usual for children to play alone or alongside others initially and it is often the final year of pre-school when ‘playing with others’ really takes off.  A good starting point for asking about the session is the poster put up every week by the entrance door – this will list some of the things we might be doing that week and often includes a photo.

There is ‘free flow’ between indoors and outdoors so children can choose where they want to play and when.  Children’s free play will be supported by carefully planned adult-initiated activities, including circle times for singing, stories and activities to support personal, social and emotional development.


Children may break for snack during the session and will be offered a choice of organic milk or water and some fruit.  Occasionally there may be something different such as toast, cheese or something we have cooked during the session. A full list of the snacks we offer can be viewed on our 'Lunches and Snacks' page.  A positive attitude to trying different foods is encouraged.  Parents are invoiced for 40p per session (all day counts as 2 sessions)  towards the purchase of fruit and snacks. Drinking water is available throughout the session.


The Pre-school maintains a close relationship with the school by regularly using the school grounds for physical play and walks, together with visits to the reception classroom and the main hall to watch plays or assemblies.  Consent for this is included in the registration form.  You will be informed of any walks or outings away from the school premises (eg, Christmas Tree Festival, blackberry picking) for which an additional consent will be required. 


This is voluntary and enables us to provide the occasional extra pair of hands for activities such as walks, outings or gardening.  It may be that you have skills, talents or activities that you are able to share with the children or are happy to read stories in the book corner.  Many parents enjoy helping with the annual outing and we try to give as much notice as possible so that working parents may arrange to take time off.


Being late can be distressing for children; they miss registration, can find it difficult to settle into the session and may be upset if a parent is not there to collect them promptly.  It is important that children start and leave on a positive note and this will also help them when they start at school.  We appreciate there are times when it cannot be avoided but it is persistent lateness that is the problem.
We do operate a One way System when dropping off and collecting children. Please enter by the front door marked “entrance” and leave by the verandah door marked “exit”.  Pushchairs should be left outside under the canopy.  Babies and toddlers can be carried inside or we can bring your child out to you.  This eases the congestion and makes arrivals and departures much easier.

 NEWSLETTERS: Monthly newsletters will keep you informed of what is happening in the pre-school, together with any special activities or events. We also now have a Facebook page that parents can ‘like’ to get up to date notifications and information. At the bottom of this page there is a sheet of Progress Appointment Slips that parents can fill out and hand to a member of staff should they have any questions, comments or worries. Please click on the red arrow to the right of the page to download the slips. 

St Catherine's Pre-school,
25 Mar 2014, 02:13