Call 01268 699305


About our Pre-school

Winter Gardens Pre-school caters for children aged 2 – 5 years old. During their time, the children will be getting used to routines and building relationships with other children in staff, in preparation for school.

Our Pre-school is a large, purpose built building which can have 30 children at any one time; four two year olds and twenty-six three and four year olds. The Pre-school is a free flow setting where children can access the inside and outside during each session. The Pre-school has a large open plan garden with many areas to explore. These include the creative area, construction, computers, mud kitchen, reading areas, role-play area and much more. At times, they can also access the Reception inside and outside areas. We have found that this increases opportunities for children to listen to and develop vocabulary and sentence structure from the older children and gets them used to the environment they will be in if they go on to attend the main school at Winter Gardens Academy.

Please see the specific Curriculum tab for more information on how the children learn through play.


Each member of the Pre-school staff are Key workers for specific children. There are daily opportunities for communication with all staff members and parent’s evenings are held twice a year for a more formal discussion about your child’s development and progress.  An annual report will be received by parents in the Summer Term.

Samantha Daubney – Pre-school Manager

Samantha has two children herself and has many years’ experience in childcare. She holds a level 4 qualification in childcare and education.

Jemma Nash – Pre-school Deputy Manager 

Jemma has three children of her own and has many years’ experience in the child care sector. She holds a level 3 in child care and education.

Charlotte Coleman-Fry– Pre-school Practitioner 

Charlotte is currently covering maternity leave and has had experience in the role of LSA in schools.

Mairi Hallett – Pre-school Practitioner 

Mairi has two grown up children and has lots of experience in childcare. Mairi holds an NNEB qualification.

Melissa Lowry – Pre-school Practitioner

Melissa has one grown up child and has many years’ experience working in childcare. Melissa holds a level 3 in childcare and education.

Session times 

Morning session: 8.30am till 11.30am

Lunch session: 11.30am till 12.30pm

Afternoon session: 12.30 till 3.30pm


The pre-school does have the option for children to have lunch. Children can have either a packed lunch or a hot meal. For a child to stay for lunch where a packed lunch is provided, it will cost £3 for the supervision. If you wanted a child to have a hot dinner that would cost an extra £2.10 as well as £3 for the supervision.  The preschool is a NUT FREE school so no nut products or Kinder products please.


Here at Winter Gardens Pre-school, we have an online learning journal that parents can access through their phone or tablets. This allows parents to see what observations staff are making on their child but also gives parents the opportunity to add any photos or observation they make with their child at home. This helps to promote good home and pre-school relationships.

Every week a challenge and a sound will be added onto Tapestry to enable you to support your child’s learning at home.

Kevin the Koala

At Winter Gardens Pre-school we have Kevin the Koala who is our preschool bear. Kevin is given to a child each week to spend the weekend at their home.  Kevin has his own bag, toothbrush and sets of clothes along with a home diary where his adventures can be documented.


Every term, a newsletter is given to all the parents detailing special events and dates for the diary. Please see Newsletter tab to view these and the Reminders tab for any extra information the Pre-school staff would like to communicate.


If you are a prospective parent and would like further information or are a current parent and have any queries, please ring the school Main Office to speak to the Pre-school Manager, Samantha Daubney on 01268 699305.

Curriculum Tab

The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) 

The Early Years Foundation Stage is how the government and early years’ professionals describe the time in your child’s life between birth and age five.

This is a very important stage as it helps your child get ready for school as well as preparing them for learning and successes in their future.  When your child is born up until the age of five, their early years’ experience should be happy, active, exciting, fun and secure; and support their development, care and learning needs.

The EYFS framework explains how and what your child will be learning to support their healthy development. Your child will be learning skills, acquiring new knowledge and demonstrating their understanding through 7 areas of learning and development. 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 of the world; and
  • Expressive arts and design

These area of learning are developed and explored through the child’s individual interests and with experienced practitioners, all areas of learning are promoted.

Each term your child’s key person will complete a progress report for you to read, this will give you an insight to how your child is progressing at pre-school. This also is a great opportunity to share any information that will benefit your child with their key person.

In the Moment Planning

Winter Gardens Pre-school follow the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum (see more information under the EYFS tab) through ‘In the Moment’ planning which allows children to follow their own individual interests.

“Small children have a natural desire to learn, explore and question. Settings and practitioners offer core provisions and an environment that enables this activity in order to capture the moment of engagement for each child. Careful observation by practitioners is key to utilising the ‘In the moment planning’ approach – opportunities to seize the moment when a child shows a level of interest and curiosity that can be drawn out and then enhanced and built upon need to be recognised – these are normally called ‘teachable moments. Written ‘planning’ is then done retrospectively in the form of observations, records of the interactions and notes on outcomes”.

Every term, your child will have a “special week” where their Key person will give extra focus to your child for the week, focusing on their interests and development.

Newsletter tab

Newsletters ****

Reminders tab

Please LABEL all clothing and please do not dress your child in nice clothes as your child will come home messy. In order to promote independence, we would like to ask parents to supply Velcro shoes or shoes that children can independently put on themselves.

Please can we ask that a bag is supplied with your child that has clothes in such as trousers, socks, underwear/nappes t-shirts and a spare pair of shoes. Also wet wipes would be very useful.

Please supply sun cream and hats in the summer months and ensure children come to school with coats, scarfs, gloves etc in the winter months.