Vision & Ethos

Our Vision
A safe and fun place where body, mind and soul are free to flourish

Our aim:
To provide an inclusive, loving, nurturing, stimulating and fun environment where children are recognised as individuals and are free to flourish and develop supported by experienced, professional Early Years Educators working in close partnership with the child’s main carers.

Our ethos:
Our practice is largely influenced by The Ten Principles identified by Tina Bruce (1996) together with a strong emphasis on emotional wellbeing.

  1. The best way to prepare children for their adult life is to give them what they need as children
  2. Children are whole people who have feelings, ideas and relationships with others, and who need to be physically, mentally, morally and spiritually healthy.
  3. Subjects such as mathematics and art cannot be separated; young children learn in an integrated way and not in neat, tidy compartments.
  4. Children learn best when they are given appropriate responsibility, allowed to make errors, decisions and choices, and respected as autonomous learners.
  5. Self-discipline is emphasised. Indeed, this is the only kind of discipline worth having. Reward systems are very short-term and do not work in the long-term. Children need their efforts to be valued.
  6. There are times when children are especially able to learn particular things.
  7. What children can do (rather that what they cannot do) is the starting point of a child’s education.
  8. Imagination, creativity and all kinds of symbolic behaviour (reading, writing, drawing, dancing, music, mathematical numbers, algebra, role play and talking) develop and emerge when conditions are favourable.
  9. Relationships with other people (both adults and children) are of central importance in a child’s life.
  10. Quality education is about three things: the child, the context in which learning takes place, and the knowledge and understanding which the child develops and learns.

We use the Leuven scales to monitor emotional wellbeing and involvement (developed by the Research Centre for Experiential Education at Leuven University, under the supervision of Professor Ferre Laevers) to underpin our practice. Planning of the environment, activities and resources offered aim to ensure that the focus is on personal, emotional and social skills

We monitor the children to assess their levels of well-being and involvement. Children who score highly on the Wellbeing Scales are self-confident, resilient and resourceful. The wellbeing scales allow us to see if children are having fun; if they radiate vitality as well as comfortable relaxation; if they are open and receptive to experiences. They have their basic physical needs met, but also their emotional needs, their need for clear boundaries, their need for acceptance and affirmation – and their need to be connected to some greater meaning than their own individual needs.

The Involvement Scales help us to know if children are at the limits of their capabilities – deeply engaged in their play, following their fascinations, sufficiently challenged, with high levels of concentration. This happens in stimulating environments where levels of wellbeing are high.

Staff are trained to offer stimulation, sensitivity and give autonomy, allowing each child to lead their play, following their own interests and ideas.