Little Pippins Pre-school (established in 1970), is based in a purpose built building securely set within the idyllic Freeman Orchard in Harwell village. We work in partnership with Harwell Primary School to provide a curriculum for the Foundation Stage and seamless transition into primary school.
We were inspected by Ofsted on 11th July 2019 and were again judged to be an ‘Outstanding’ early years provision – “Staff have very high expectations of what children can achieve and their teaching is highly responsive to children’s needs.” “Managers monitor the progress of children meticulously. All children … make rapid and sustained progress from their starting points.”
Little Pippins is a voluntary managed charity and company limited by guarantee, registered by Ofsted on the Early Years Childcare Register (URN 133726), and an accredited member of the Pre-school Learning Alliance.
Little Pippins Pre-school and Breakfast Club are open Monday to Friday, 38 weeks each year, providing pre-school care and education for children between the ages of 2½ & 5 yrs and before school childcare facilities for children 3 – 11 yrs old.
Little Pippins also operates a daily walking bus daily to Harwell Primary School for primary school children in the morning and for pre-school children in the afternoon, to the after-school childcare based at Harwell Primary school. Working in partnership with Harwell After-School Club, Little Pippins is able to support working parents by offering access to childcare from 8am through to 6pm.
Little Pippins recognises that each child is an individual with their own particular needs and learning styles. We therefore endeavour to promote learning and development through a well-planned play-based curriculum which includes differentiation and either support or extension activities. Our Key Person system has been developed to maintain this ethos. Children and their Key Person belong to one of three small nurture groups which is led by a senior member of staff.
All our play-based activities are designed to make sure children become confident and independent learners. We promote practical learning and celebrate ‘have a go’ mark-making and mathematical experiences that have a purpose both inside and out.
Little Pippins focuses on making sure children have a good and balanced grasp of the Prime Areas of the EYFS, recognising these as pre-requisites for accessing the rest of the curriculum and preparing children for school. We consider ourselves to be teachers in the broadest and most valuable sense of the word and espouse teaching that takes into account age/stage and learning styles. This is reflected in our balance of teacher led/directed and child initiated activities. Our children play, explore and are active learners and are challenged to be creative and think critically.
All the staff have had safeguarding and first aid training. Staff are encouraged and supported to continue their professional development through specialist training and/or achieving nationally recognised childcare qualifications.
We want all our children to achieve their full potential at Little Pippins and to become confident and independent learners. We acknowledge our role as teachers in this process and seek to sensitively challenge, enthuse and motivate. We use our nurture and story times to model positive attitudes and behaviour and to inspire and introduce new concepts and ideas.
We offer two Forest School sessions a week led by a fully qualified Forest School Leader and Assistant. Forest School is an inspirational process that offers all children the opportunity to achieve and develop confidence and self-esteem through hands on learning experiences in a natural environment.
If you would like further information, please don’t hesitate to contact us.