Our Philosophy & CurriculumParents Log inLatest News Letter

Our Philosophy

Each child is an individual

At Mary Poppins our philosophy is to encourage children, through play, to explore life in a safe and secure environment. Building your child's confidence, self respect and respect for others remains an integral part of our approach.

We endeavour to balance the need to learn with the need to play, and the curriculum combines the teaching of basic literacy and numeracy through play and interaction between children.  We also take a 'child-centred' approach to learning, which means looking at what we offer through the eyes of your child and are guided by what inspires and motivates them.

We believe that children learn best in a relaxed environment and we endeavour to provide an atmosphere where every child makes the most of their abilities.  We know that children develop at different rates, and by treating each child as an individual, we believe children will thrive, and be prepared for the important step up to formal schooling

Our mission is to provide childcare services that prepare your child for the future. We use an interactive approach that allows nursery staff to work with one child at a time. We feel this is the best way to educate and help develop the children.

Curriculum Policy


The nursery incorporates the Early Years Foundation stage (EYFS) framework to support and develop children’s play and learning. This was implemented September 2008 and in addition the National Day Care Standards will be integrated into the document.
The EYFS covers birth to five years and are divided up through the following principles:
A unique child - every child is a competent learner from birth
Positive relationships - children can learn to be strong and independent
Enabling Environments - the environment plays a key role in supporting and extending children learning and development
Learning and development - children develop in different ways and at different times and all areas of learning and development at important.
The curriculum is all adult directed and child initiated experiences that are available within the nursery and are based heavily on a child’s Personal, Social and Emotional development and interests which underpins all curriculum areas, plus there holistic development and attitude towards coming to the Nursery.


The Early Years Foundation Stage framework is reflected in our practice within an environment which is respectful, kind and considerate to all those who attend. Our objective is to celebrate the age of the children as they are, and not purely see the early years as a pre-runner for something bigger and more exciting. We embrace the curriculum and lay the foundations for the promotion of kind and considerate individuals.

Aims and Objectives

The aim of our nursery curriculum is:
    * To enable all children to learn and develop their skills to the best of their ability.
    * To promote a positive attitude towards learning
    * To promote self – discovery, exploration and curiosity towards learning
    * To promote an ethos of mutual respect and kindness, and a sense of what is and what is not acceptable codes of behaviour
    * To help children understand the importance of truth and fairness, so that they begin to learn the importance of equal opportunities.
    * To endorse and support children’s high self esteems so they have the confidence to ‘try’. Mary Poppins nursery advocates the importance of the process of learning, and not necessarily the end product.

Organisation and Planning      

The planning of activities is carried out in three phases:
    * Long Term
    * Medium term
    * Short term

Loose themes and curriculum areas are discussed within planning meetings with key staff in each room as at regular intervals (please see staff meeting cycle). In addition, key workers plan for the individual needs and interests of the children in their group, and these are reflective of the curriculum which ascertains to the children’s stage of development.
Planning within the EYFS - covers the 7 areas of development, with most activities lending themselves to cross curricula learning, such as a scientific activity, which would involve counting or sorting. The six areas are:
    * Personal. Social and Emotional Development
    * Communication and language
    * Physical Development
    * Mathematics
    * Literacy
    * Understanding the world
    * Expressive arts and design 

Children with special Needs

Mary Poppins nursery is designed to provide access and opportunities for all children who attend the nursery. EYFS is delivered creatively by practitioners who will take into account any special needs that your child has that need addressing. Children will not be excluded from any activity because of a special need; the onus will be on the practitioner to deliver it in a manner that meets the needs of all.
The nursery complies with the requirements set out in the SEN code of practice, a copy of which can be viewed in the Nursery. Assessments will be made in accordance with the code. A Multi Element Plan will be formulated for children to ensure their needs are meet, monitored and reviewed. If a Childs needs are more severe, the nursery may apply for an Earmarked pupil funding or a statement of special needs from Derby County Council. This is always carried out in accordance with the Area SENCO and with support from multi- agencies and quality teams.
The EYFS endorses an ethos of learning through play. The children progress along the stepping stones, which breaks down outcomes into small, manageable pieces which the children need to work through until they are perfect a skill. The children are guided but meet the stepping stones at an individual rate, at a speed that is reflective of their stage of development and the opportunities they have had. Planning is therefore vital to ensure the children have opportunities to try out new skills and to explore objects, sometimes for the first time.
Partnership with parents is a vital component of the EYFS . Children who benefit from support and a positive approach to play and learning, offer children an excellent foundation onto which future learning can be scaffolded.
Monitoring and Review
The Nursery Manager is responsible for the day-to-day organisation of the curriculum, ensuring that staff are fully trained in all curriculum areas, and recognise the importance of an integrated approach to the EYFS Guidance . An amalgamation of evidence of children’s learning is captured on a daily basis through observation and Individual learning journeys, which is monitored and checked by the Nursery Manager for progression and inclusion. These learning journeys/profiles are sent home every three to four months for parents to read and add to with their own comments and observations, which can then be taken into consideration when planning for the children. 

Mary Poppins 30 Chain Lane, Mickleover, Derby DE3 9AJ