My name is Fran and I have been working at Cuddles since September 2001. The Canford Nursery is purpose built and has been running since 2001. We have nine rooms and cater for children from six weeks to 14 years old.
Each room has its own core staff to ensure continuity for the children and parents. We have amazing outdoor facilities and the children spend time outside every day, using bikes, scooters, tunnels, sand pits and water trays.
As manager of the setting, I qualified with an NVQ 3 in Early Years Education in 1999 and in 2008 gained my Foundation Degree. In 2012 I attended Winchester University to gain Early Years Professional Status qualification.
I have attended many courses over the years which include food hygiene, first aid at work, Special Educational Needs as well as a management course. I am also the nursery SENCO. As well as all of this, I am a qualified gymnastics coach and take the older children to Rossmore Leisure Centre for a weekly gym session.
Fran is our nursery manager at Cuddles Canford Heath and has been with Cuddles for a whole 16 years – we bet she’s seen some changes since joining us back in … 2001! We asked Fran:
What made you decide on a career in childcare?
I have always loved being with children and seeing them develop.
What’s the most rewarding part of your job?
Seeing children flourish as individuals.
What activities do you personally think help children to develop in their early years?
Physical skills such as gymnastics and playing outside!
Indoor play or outdoor play – which do you prefer and why?
Outdoor play. I love the outdoors because you have open ended space to use your imagination and do whatever you would like to do and this changes with the seasons. I love the fact that you can use your whole body and use many muscles to get your body going. I love being in 1 of our 8 gardens as there is always something to do from splashing in the mud puddles, sniffing the flowers and climbing the pirate ship.
Having just been awarded outstanding by Ofsted, what would you say makes your nursery the best choice for parents who are deciding on where to send their children?
Individualised care. We always have your child in the centremost part of our thoughts.
Christmas will be here before we know it. What would be your recommendation as the ‘perfect’ Christmas toy for pre-school children to expand their creativity and learning?
Open ended resources which can be used inside or out such as bricks, boxes, (clean) drain pipes etc.
Describe a typical day at Cuddles Canford Heath?
Involves indoor/outdoor access to the garden lots of learning and most important of all we have fun. Remember children learn best while at play!
What do you enjoy most when not at work?
Being out in nature with my family. My beautiful twins and dog Millie love exploring the outdoors!