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About us 

 Acorns is situated in a classroom in Bilton Grange School. We accept children from the age of 2 years until they start school. We were awarded Outstanding in all areas by Ofsted in March 2010, October 2011 and May 2016. Our learning, and our outdoor area is designed based on the Scandinavian principles of pedagogy and forest kindergartens. This means that children learn by choosing what they want to do independently, and adults follow their lead by supporting their individual interests and learning needs. We spend large parts of the day outside because this provides children with excellent opportunities for both physical and cognitive learning and development, as well as helping them to develop healthy immune systems and knowledge and understanding of the natural environment.

Up until the age of seven, children learn differently than at any other time in their lives, because of the way their brains grow and develop. We aim to support parents' knowledge of children's learning and development and how best this can be encouraged in the home environment. We are passionate about Acorns and we are always looking for ways to improve, striving to provide the best experience we can for all our children and families. 

We understand that parents are often anxious about leaving their child, often for the first time with people other than family, and we work to get to know families well before their child starts with us, so that they can be confident that their child will be cared for by adults who know their individual needs extremely well. We do this by providing time for visits to Acorns, and home visits to every child by their key person. We always work in partnership with parents because they are the people who know their child best.

Parent Representatives; We have a parents' representatives group. We have four or five parents/carers who have volunteered to join the group which has various roles, such as liaising with parents and Acorns' staff, helping with events, reviewing policies, and observing preschool sessions. The group has informal meetings once a term. Any other parents or carers are welcome to become parents reps. If there is anything you think you would like to talk to the parents' representatives about, there are photographs of them and their contact details are on the parents notice board. 

'Fundamental British Values'; We are required to ensure that children understand fundamental British values as part of the early years curriculum. At Acorns we believe that this is fully embedded in our every day practice. The values which are required to be taught are;

  • Democracy - at Acorns we encourage and enable children to make democratic decisions. For example, on a daily basis, we offer them choices of what they would like for snack, or the story they will have at circle time, rather than imposing adults' choices. They can choose their own activities and whether they want to play indoors or out.
  • Rule of law - we support children to be involved in rule making, setting guidance which is suitable for the of the group of children to understand, and making rules simple so that children know where they stand and what is expected of them. We support behaviour consistently, positively and fairly.
  • Individual liberty - we listen to children's opinions and encourage them to put their views forward. We involve them in decision making, for example, before going outside to play, children take part in outdoor safety checks with an adult, and help to decide whether it is safe to use climbing equipment, or whether coats should be worn etc. We encourage children to develop self-esteem and self-confidence in their own abilities.
  • Mutual respect and tolerance - we dislike the term tolerance because it suggests that we 'put up with' people of different backgrounds and cultures. At Acorns we don't just 'tolerate' but we welcome, value and embrace every child and family in our care, whatever their background or circumstances. We teach children to respect others and we challenge stereo-types, helping them to learn about their own culture as well as providing experiences and understanding of other cultures.



 Our Ofsted report with the judgement of Outstanding, dated May 2016 can be seen at  

Complaints Procedure - we always do our very best to resolve any complaints amicably. If you have any concerns about our provision, please discuss them with us if possible. If however you feel unable to do this, or if you wish to take a complaint further, we have a complaints procedure which can be seen in our policies file. There is also a leaflet about how to make a complaint or how to complain to Ofsted on the parents' notice board in our cloakroom and additional copies of the complaints procedure to take away.