Learning Through Play

Playing is one of the main ways children learn – building their physical, social, emotional and intellectual skills. At Active Early Years Academy we encourage learning through play by giving the children lots of opportunity to play. We provide:

A Role Play Area that changes on a regular basis to encourage the children to play and act as various different characters and in various different situations.

A Maths Area with a variety of tools and apparatus that promotes learning and discussion. These include tape measures, shapes, counting blocks, calculators, ruler plus many more.

A range of creative equipment, sand, water, arts and crafts and messy play, which all children are free to access throughout the day.

A designated Mark Making Area where the children are able to put meanings to marks through drawing, writing their name or letters. This table incorporates the use of stencils, pens, pencils and a variety of other mark making tools. They have access to this table throughout the whole day encouraging them to develop their own abilities at their own pace. Mark making is also carried out in other areas around the room including the sand tray and role play areas.

A Construction Area where all children have easy access to the toys on offer. They are able to build, balance, design and create mini masterpieces. These activities support their gross and fine motor skills, incorporate mathematics and speech and language to aid in all-round development.


The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) is a framework that we follow to support your child between birth and the age 5. This ensures that we keep your child safe and promote their welfare. We use the 7 areas of development in our planning, and ensure we are meeting the children’s needs, so that they can play and learn happily, in ways which will help them develop skills and knowledge across the Prime and Specific areas of learning in the EYFS.

In the EYFS Early Years Foundation stage we focus on Prime and Specific areas Children should mostly develop the 3 prime areas first. These are:

  • Communication and language;
  • Physical development; and
  • Personal, social and emotional development.

These prime areas are those most essential for your child’s healthy development and future learning. As children grow, the prime areas will help them to develop skills in 4 specific areas. These are:

  • Literacy;
  • Mathematics;
  • Understanding the world
  • Expressive arts and design.

These 7 areas are used to plan your child’s learning and activities. The staff teaching and supporting your child will make sure that the activities are suited to your child’s unique needs. This is a little bit like a curriculum in primary and secondary schools, but it’s suitable for very young children, and it’s designed to be really flexible so that staff can follow your child’s unique needs and interests.

Key Person

In our setting a key person is a named member of staff with responsibilities for a small group of children, who helps those children in the group feel safe and cared for. It involves the key person in responding sensitively to children’s feelings and behaviours and meeting emotional needs by giving reassurance, such as when they are new to a setting, and supporting the child’s well-being.

The key person supports physical needs too, helping with issues like nappy changing, toileting and dressing. That person is a familiar figure who is accessible and available as a point of contact for parents and one who builds relationships with the child and parents or carers. Children feel settled and happy and are more confident to explore and as a result become more capable learners.

Learning Journals

Active Early Years Academy staff make regular observations on the children’s learning and development, allowing us to ensure that all children’s needs are met to the best of our ability.

These observations are stored on tapestry online learning journeys for each child and are available for you to view online at any time.

Opening Times

We offer a pre-school and wrap around service, for children from 2 years  to 11 years 50 weeks a year.

Sessions for 2 – 5 year old children from 7.30 am – 6 pm. Breakfast Club from 7.30 am – 8.30 am. Morning Session from 8.30 am – 11.30 am. Lunch Club 11.30 am-12.15 pm, Afternoon Session 12 am – 3 pm. After-school Session from 3 am  – 6 pm. Full Day Care from 7.30 am – 6 pm. Half Day Morning Session 7.30 am – 12.45 pm and Afternoon Session 12.45 pm – 6 pm.

For Newnham School children we offer Breakfast Club from 7.30 am – 9 am  and After-school Club Session runs from 3 pm – 6 pm, we also offer pick ups and drop-offs for morning and afternoon nursery.


Nursery Environment

 Based in a church building with a bright airy hall and rooms, we pride ourselves on creating a personal and homely environment for children and their families.There is an inviting and friendly atmosphere which is filled with fun and adventure. The main hall has access to the garden area, allowing the children a free flow environment for indoor and outdoor play, at certain points during the day.

We believe every child deserves the best start in life, and support this to enable them to fulfill their potential. We ensure there is a secure foundation through learning and development opportunities. We want every child to be included and supported and make good progress so that no child gets left behind.

Working with Parents

At Active Early Years Academy we believe that parents and staff need to work together in a close partnership in order for children to receive the quality of care and early learning to meet their individual needs. We welcome parents as partners and support a two-way sharing of information that helps establish trust and understanding. We are committed to supporting parents in an open and sensitive manner to include them as an integral part of the care and early learning team within the nursery.

Parents and carers have a hugely important role to play in their child’s education.

“When parents and practitioners work together in Early Years settings, the results have a positive impact on the children’s development and learning” (EYFS 2007)


Within our nursery we provide healthy, balanced and nutritious meals throughout the day. We cater for any special dietary requirements, preferences and food allergies.

We also provide equally nutritious vegetarian options.

Snack and meal times are considered a ‘social time’ for staff and children to sit and talk together. Active Early Years Academy encourages good eating habits and promotes the use of good manners.

We offer a morning snack, meal at lunch time, afternoon snack and a light tea.


We ensure that we employ only the most dedicated and desirable staff. We can promise that your child will be loved, well cared for and treated with the respect and dignity that every child deserves.

At Active Early Years Academy we follow the safer recruitment process for all staff.

All staff are required to complete an application form outlining their skills and commitment. They are interviewed and if successful are required to provide photo ID, two references and have a up to date DBS check.

All our staff are fully trained in Paediatric First Aid, Safeguarding and Food Hygiene.