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Moving to nursery

Discussion in 'Early Years' started by jaimiwynn, Jun 28, 2011.

  1. Hi,
    I am still a relatively new teacher and I have taught year 1 for the past two years.
    Next year, I moving to be the nursery teacher, which I am a bit concerned about as I know very little about nursery practice and not really sure where to start. Has anyone got any suggesstions of where to start learning about nursery practice - reading etc.
    Thank you x
  2. I think the thought of teaching in Nursery put the heebee jeebee's on many teachers!! I think teacher's are either afraid that they'll be stuck in there forever or that they won't know where to start.
    I moved to Nursery this year after not teaching Nursery since my NQT year (a long long time ago!) I'd been in Reception for a long time and so was familiar with EYFS (just think APP for EVERYTHING!). But I moved schools and was put in the nursery.
    One of the first things I did to familiarise myself with the curriculum was to look at the development matters. I got these in easy form by downloading them from the resources section on here. I had a look at existing planning folders and double checked coverage of development matters. I tried to get an idea of how planning worked, how children's interests were planned for, etc, etc.
    The next big help was the transfer day when the new nursery children spent an hour in the nursery. I'd forgotten quite how tiring it was! I used to get all my work done in the morning and hear readers in the afternoon in my Reception class. In Nursery, you have to use the same amount of energy morning and afternoon. It's exhausting (but you kind of get used to it - eventually)
    Another good piece of advice is to handle the Nursery Nurses very carefully. I am extremely lucky that I work with supportive nursery nurses who have been great in helping me get to grips with a new role, but the last time I worked in nursery when I was an NQT, I came across some particularly evil nursery nurses who resisted change and spent the majority of their time moaning about their jobs and how much they got paid. Very wearing. (whatever you do, don't suggest they get a job at Sainsbury's instead, believe me, I speak from experience)
    I hope you'll love it in nursery. One of the biggest lessons I've had to learn is to not think of myself as a "class teacher", because the nursery is totally different from a classroom as you are used to it in school.
    Good luck x
  3. Hi,
    I have recently accepted a post in an am nursery, i know just how you feel i am really nervous. I have never worked in foundation stage and most of my experience is in ks2. This might explain why i am struggling to decide how i will organise the sessions to cover everything i need to do. i've been looking through the forums trying to get an idea of how people ensure they spend time with each group and get a good balance of Child initiated too. Any ideas would be greatly welcomed i think my husband might gag me soon if i don't stop asking his opinion on my daily structure lol :)

  4. My nursery is 1 large room and an outside area which has a garden and a covered area. There is me and 3 nursery nurses. We take it in turns on a rota basis to "work" each area for a week. Inside is split into 2 areas (imaginatively named area 1 and area 2. Area 3 is outside), the 4th person does "float" which basically entails covering breaks, dealing with first aid, general photocopying etc.
    I have to make sure that inside and outside have all areas covered. The objectives are taken directly from the development matters 30-50 months. The weekly objectives are the same in each area.
    Area 1 has a focus of Literacy and Numeracy. We have our main role play area in there too. The areas we plan for are: PSRN, CLL, writing; role play; carpet area (sometimes a numeracy focus, sometimes small world); ICT (2 computers in this area).
    Area 2 is the "messy" area. The areas we plan for are: Sand; water; malleable/tactile; science investigation; small construction; small world; table top; creative.
    Area 3 is outside. We plan for: sand; water; physical; large construction; small construction; apparatus (including wheeled equipment); small world; role play; malleable and mark making.
    We cover child interest through a "wish fish", where children (and parents) can add their ideas to planning through adding a shell to the wish fish display. The wish fish then writes back saying how their ideas will be added to planning. ACtivities have included extra sticking, more train track, to a large scale version of hungry hippos in the garden!!! We are also quite flexible with the weekly planning to carry on activities that have proved very popular. For example, this week playdough and kitchen equipment has been particularly popular so we have kept it out longer than on the planning. Planning is displayed in each area and annotated as it changes.
    On the planning, each day has a designated adult focus.
    We have large or small groups each day. We stop mid-session for a story and general PSED time as a large group. We introduced this this year as we were finding that the children were struggling with the 3hr session. This gave us the opportunity to re-focus them and direct them again to specific activities. At the end of each session we either have a planned large group where we do music or French, or we have planned small groups where we do discrete teaching of Letters & Sounds phase 1 and PSRN.
    This is how we do it in the nursery where I work. I am sure that many other nurseries are different. What you have to remember is that although you plan activities, the majority of learning that takes place is child-led. I quite often plan an activity where I have my "tick list" of children and make sure that each child completes my activity, but I also have times where I target children that don't access as many activities, or times where I just do the activity with the children that want to do it.
    Hope this helps a little. Working in nursery is great. Real hard work, but extremely rewarding. Knowing that you are the first person to input into their education is a true privelege. [​IMG]
  5. I am new to Nursery and I'm finding the structure of each session really difficult. We have a 39 place Nursery and at the moment are still admitting new starters. I am the Nursery teacher and I have 1 Nursery Nurse and 1 Level 2 Teaching Assistant. The structure at the moment consists of- free play as the children arrive, a short register time, key worker groups in the middle of the session (the three staff take a group each) and then whole group story/singing at the end of the session.
    The key worker group activity is different each day - PSED, 2 Phase 1 activities, PSRN, and CLL (Story with a focus).
    KUW is sometimes linked to CLL
    CD & PD are usually craft/art related in our messy area and again are sometimes linked to KUW.
    I find the adult led activities really confusing.
    • Do you link yours to you larger group activities?
    • Do you involve you Nursery Nurses in Adult Led activites?
    • How do you add this on your planning?
    • How do you fit in the new starters some of whom are crying and sometimes wetting themselves?
    Any help would be gratefully appreciated.
    My email address is normee_m@msn.com

  6. GemsEYFS

    GemsEYFS New commenter

    It is my second year in the Nursery, and yes it is very hard work and very tiring. But extremely rewarding.
    I have 45 FT children my self as teacher and 3 ta's.
    The children all have a key worker, so split into 4 groups (Sizes differ slightly in relation to TA levels). When chidlren enter in the morning, they go straight to their key group where they self register by writng their names on the whiteboard. Each key worker then delevers P1 Letters and sounds. (Groupd will be differentated later on in the year). This takes approx 15 mins. All planned for by me, with activities on rotation around the room each day.
    The chidlren then go in to free flow indoors. I have 2 adults doing adult directed tasks, 1 adult supporting children in their play and one adult managing- toilet accidents, office trips, making sure children are on task and not running around the room). this is rotated as no role is more important than the other. So all staff myself and TA's share the focussed activites and other classroom responsibilities.I have a weekly plan that directs adults accross the whole day. Then mid way through the morning we stop and have a snack/psed/story session in children's key groups. This is a nice focus time where children reflect on what they have done in the morning and talk about what they are going to do later.
    After snack the outdoors is open and the morning continues as planned but with outdoor provision too. We then stop or lunch, where we have a key group story time, then children go for dinner. Staff have 15 minutes in the room before their lunch, we use this time to hear 2/3 readers a day each and then by the end of the week every child has been heard read and it hasn't eaten ito the daily timetable.
    After lunch the chidlren all come into their key groups and we have a short/quick fire maths session. The children like this time' YEs, its number time!'. I plan very short practicial activites linked to our Numeracy obj. This could be nursery rhymes with number, Building small/big towers with bricks/ cutting up shapes, playing bingo, counting always happens at this point too. This can last anything in the region of 10-30 minutes depending on how the chidlren take that activity and how engaged they are. And, it gets childen back focussed afetr their long lunch time play.
    Then, the children go back into their free flow, indoors and out with the same 2 focussed activities being continued and 1 staff supporting children, 1 staff managing. The end of the day, we have a relection in key groups and a story before home.
    I changed my timetable soooooooo much last year because things just 'Didn;t work'. This year it works very well and all atff are aware of their role at each part of the day. As mentioned previously, the role 'teacher' is used lightly in nursery. Yes, you are the teacher. You are responsible for all paper work, assessment and its you who is responsible for progress. But, in the room the children see ALL the staff as equal. I have 3 FAB TA's now. We have planning meeting together, we dicuss individual childrens needs and the team is very effective.
    Hope this helps! Dont be scared to change things./ You have to find what works for you, your team and most of all your children. Make sure your activites are focussed and engage the chidlren. If all children are engages on fun, creative, meaningfull activities where learing is planned for, and children are making progress you are doing a god job!


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