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Baby room

[Learning Journey] [WOW moments] [Keyperson]  [Diaries] [Observations and Schemas] [Meals and Snacks] [Sleep] [Clothing] [Additional Needs] [Moving to Pippins] [Admissions Policy] [Joining Us]

Painting can be so much funCatkins is our baby room available for children from 6 weeks. We operate a 1:3 staff ratio and can cater for a maximum of 18 babies per day.

Our baby section contains a small world area, main carpeted room in which we offer a cosy area, role play, sensoryStory time as a group equipment a construction area, low level sinks and a large spacious area for physical development. Our spacious conservatory offers messy play and table top area as well as a cosy story area. Our baby section also offers our own food preparation area, nappy room and sleep room as well as a soft tarmac garden area directly outside the play room and access to 60 acres of countryside for walks. We regularly use the activity play barn and the nursery has it's own indoor/outdoor playbarn a large farm barn with a variety of activities ensuring outdoor play everyday regardless of the weather.

To arrange a viewing of the nursery please contact  Sarah or Nick on 01473 652249. If you would like to join us here at Birch Farm you will need to complete a Catkins registration pack which is available from the nursery.

Please return your signed registration pack to Sarah Sharman or Nick Leeder. Places are subject to availability and will be Who's this then?confirmed in writing.

Our flexible daily routine ensures children can eat and sleep as they require following the routines you have developed at home wherever possible.

Observations ensure that staff are planning activities appropriate to the age and stage of individual children on a weekly basis following the Early Years Foundation Stage guidelines and more details on catkins curriculum can be found in the catkins curriculum page.

Catkins maintain a daily diary for each child which helps to ensure that you are involved in your child's day at nursery. You are welcome to add your own comments to your child's diary about things you and your child have been doing, these diaries make a lasting record of your child's development.

Staff are available for an informal chat during the day, and we hold a  parents evening three times a year for you to chat to your child's keyperson on a more formal basis. Appointments can be made at any other time on request.


Music TimeA Learning journey is a written record of individual progress for each child. Learning journeys contain all observations made by staff, photographs of your child's nursery experiences and an area where parents comments and observations can be added. In addition to these basic ongoing pages the file also contains 6 weekly progress reports, termly reports written jointly by parents and staff and a record sheet that is completed when a child moves to a new section of the nursery or leaves Birch Farm. This will enable your child's new facility to continue with your child's present interests and see their present stage of development.Your child's Learning Journey is always available for parents to view at our parents evenings or other times by request.

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A special WOW moments box has been placed by the notice board for parents to add their comments and key development moments from home to their child's learning journey profile. Parents written comments an also be added to the termly reports that are written for parents evenings.

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A member of staff will be allocated to your family as a keyperson. This person will help your child to settle and develop a bond to ensure your child has a safe, friendly , secure person with whom they can spend time if they require. Your keyperson will also change nappies, and feed wherever possible and undertake regular observations. They use these observations to plan for your child on a weekly basis this ensures that when your child attends nursery the activities are interesting and stimulating to them at their stage of development. Your family's keyperson will be happy to discuss your child’s development with you and will be the main person completing your child’s daily diary. 

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The diary will be used by your child’s keyperson to record your child’s day at nursery. The diary will be handed to you at the end of every day for you to take home. You are welcome to add comments about your child’s home experiences this will help staff to create positive links with home. This diary is not intended to replace your daily contact with staff but to enhance you and your child’s experiences at Birch Farm.

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Staff observe children to enable us to plan and support children to develop. These observations are also used to create a learning journey of your child’s life in nursery. We organise regular parents evening during this time you can chat to your keyperson and see your child’s file. If you are unable to make a parents evening or would like to see the file at another time please make an appointment to ensure we maintain staff ratios. We also observe children to help identify their present schemas. Schemas are patterns of learning that children explore. Often children will have 1 dominate schema throughout their lives. Schemas are children’s area of interest and by planning for a child’s schema we will ensure they are interested and highly motivated in activities and therefore developing their knowledge. If you would like to know more about schemas please see the curriculum section [Click Here].

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All food is prepared daily from fresh ingredients and served when children are ready. If your child is asleep they will be fed when they wake. We offer three meals a day and additional healthy snacks mid morning and mid afternoon. Our four weekly menus are reviewed twice a year .We are happy to work with you for any special dietary requirements your child may have but please inform us in writing on the registration form. All babies will be weaned in conjunction with yourselves as you are ready. At Birch Farm we are happy to supply your child's baby milk please advise us of the brand you use.

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SLEEP:Catkins sleep room

Catkins has it's own sleep room with cots. Children may have a sleep when necessary and are checked regularly, as well as a cot alarm system in operation.  


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We do not have a uniform, but sweatshirts are available with the nursery logo if you require from size 22 upwards (a sample is in reception). We  recommend that children are dressed in practical clothes for a busy day in a nursery. Different layers so that the children can accommodate different activities and finally clothes that can take the wear and tear of playing outside, painting, craft activities etc. – ALL NAMED PLEASE.

Simple name tags will soon be recognised by their owners and will also help us to ‘re-home’ lost items!  Overalls are provided but accidents do happen and a change of clothes in a named bag is essential.  A warm/waterproof coat and wellingtons are needed for outdoor activities in winter and sun hat and sun cream in the summer months.

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Our section Senco works with support from Suffolk County Council to assist any children who have additional needs. Children with additional needs are met with understanding and support and encouraged to join in with all activities at a level appropriate to them. Should staff have a concern over a child's developmental progress in consultation with parents, outside professional advice is sought in accordance with the DfES Code of Practice 2001 on the Identification and Assessment of Special Educational Needs.

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Children move to Pippins when they are physically and emotionally ready to do so. This varies for individual children but is generally from 18-20 months. During their last month in Catkins the children moving up to Pippins will have several visits with their Keyperson to settle them into their new environment.  No child will be moved without consultation with parents/carers.

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Children can start Catkins from 6 weeks. No child will be refused admission in accordance with our ‘Equal Opportunities Policy’.  We have written policies for ‘Behaviour’, ‘Health & Safety’, ‘Child Protection’ and ‘Equal Opportunities’ – all of which are available to parents on request.  Should Catkins be full, Birch Farm will operate a waiting list.

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To arrange a viewing of the nursery please contact Sarah or Nick on 01473 652249. If you would like to join us here at Birch Farm you will need to complete a Catkins registration pack.

Please return your signed registration pack to Sarah Sharman or Nick Leeder. Places are subject to availability and will be confirmed in writing.

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Last modified: Friday, 25. April 2014