A Fond Farewell to Pam!
26 Aug 16
Today we say a fond farewell to Pam Burrell who retired this week to spend time with her new baby granddaughter. Pam is one of our longest serving members of staff, having worked at Portland House for 20 years with young children of all ages and learning capabilities, supporting them and their families to have the best possible start in life.
She has done so much for the
Stay and Play Mini Olympics
24 Aug 16
At Harlequins Stay & Play the children participated in their own mini Olympics.
We had lots of events going on; long jump, egg and spoon race, sack races and a parents race, needless to say the parents were the most competitive! The babies took part in their own mini obstacle course and all the children finished off by receiving a medal.We even had a visit from
17 Aug 16
This week at Harlequin the Poppies children have been in the forest with their torches hunting for bugs!
They found lots to look at: spiders, slugs and wood lice to name a few. The children helped to make a bug den in the snug area where they can use the magnifying glasses to look closely at our pretend bugs! The children then drew lovely pictures of the
Oakwood Olympic Games
11 Aug 16
At Oakwood House Stay & Play, Preschool children joined the Toddlers at The Olympic Games opening ceremony waving their flags and carrying the ‘Olympic torch’.
We had several events: stick hurdles, foil shot putt, ribbon long jump, log assault course and the exciting finale ‘The Relay race with Parents’. The sporting event offered an opportunity for us all to see the children try
A Visit from Farmer Pogson
10 Aug 16
The pre-school children at Portland House Nursery were thrilled to have a visit from Daisy the cow. Daisy is a life sized replica cow, brought to nursery by our local milkman and farmer on his visit.
Farmer Pogson spoke to the children about the “magical” way that a cow makes milk: by eating green grass, digesting it through seven stomachs and then describing how
Fruit from the trees!
08 Aug 16
Holly Bank pre-schoolers have finally been able to pick the fruit from their trees!
The children have been observing the apples and bilberries growing in the garden and have enjoyed picking them, cleaning them and tasting them! We were all amazed at how big the apples had grown!
Poppies picnic at the park
25 Jul 16
The children in the Poppy room at Portland house enjoyed an outing to the local Reinwood Park. They had opportunity to practise their road safety skills such as ‘stop look’ and listening as they crossed the road for vehicles, listening and following instructions from the adults and walking safely on the journey holding their partners hands.
The children tested their physical skills at the park
School Leavers Party
20 Jul 16
The Portland House children from Bluebells and Sunflowers had an exciting afternoon of fun and music extravaganza in the nursery garden as the children celebrated leaving for their new adventure to school in September.
Mums and dads and family members joined in the fun with the children singing and dancing to the tunes with Alison from Melody Makers in the lovely sunshine.
Afterwards we had
Music Session - Pulse and Rhythm
18 Jul 16
Portland House preschool children in Bluebells and Sunflowers had their first session with Music teacher Lyn who came to visit us on Monday 18th July. In today’s session we learnt about PULSE & RHYTHM through a variety of different activities.
Activity 1 Understanding our different voices in a ‘question and answer’ activity Leader ‘Can you use your quiet voice? Children ‘yes we
14 Jul 16
The children at Holly Bank Nursery have enjoyed cooking up a feast in their mud kitchen. Using grass, leaves, mud, stones and sticks they pulled, mixed, sprinkled and patted the natural resources to create their concoctions.
The children were also on the hunt for mini beasts! They learnt the use of magnifying glasses to help them look closely at the world around them.
13 Jul 16
As an Ofsted Outstanding nursery, the team at Portland House aim to make a continual positive contribution to the further development of childcare and have a responsibility to share good practice in order to help other nurseries and care providers achieve the best possible quality of care for children everywhere.
The visit from Prospect House Nurseries, based in Leeds, came about after our long serving staff member
07 Jul 16
Holly Bank Nursery enjoyed a visit from “Rugby Tots” on Thursday to learn multiple skills used in rugby.
Children loved the sporty session and got chance to show off their running, throwing and catching skills.
The rugby session also demonstrated how well the children could listen to instructions and to work as a team.
Portland House wins the Examiner School Award for Nursery of the Year!
07 Jul 16
A big well done and congratulations to Portland House for winning the Examiner School Award for Nursery of the Year! We are so proud of all of the nurseries in the group and the staff teams who work so hard to provide the best possible learning opportunities and care for all the children who attend. However, this is a brilliant honour for Portland House and one that marks 25 years
04 Jul 16
The children, parents and staff at Oakwood House had a great time at our leaver’s picnic. We celebrated the wonderful journey of those children who will be leaving this summer to start their new adventure at school in September.
We were joined by Alison from Melody Makers who had us all singing and dancing, which was great fun and we all finished by dancing around
Preschool Visit to Ponderosa
01 Jul 16
The Portland House preschool children in Bluebells and Sunflowers had an exciting adventure visiting Ponderosa therapeutic centre in Heckmondwike. We travelled by minibus and when we arrived were greeted by Eve and Elise who took us on an educational tour of the animals around the centre.
We saw a variety of animals such as different breeds of birds, monkeys, silver foxes, meerkats, reindeers, pigs, tortoises, baby
International Mud Day at Oakwood House
29 Jun 16
Today at Oakwood House the children have had an amazing time celebrating international mud day! All age groups have embraced mud play.
During the Forest School session the children explored their senses in the wet and squishy mud! They looked for a suitable place for the ‘Giant’ to build his house and thought the bridge would be a good place, “So the giant can
International Mud Day at Holly Bank
29 Jun 16
The preschool children at Holly Bank enjoyed exploring the texture and feel of mud as they created mud pies and cakes in the mud kitchen. The children squished the mud on their hands rubbing the mud up their arms and creating mud masks. The children explored numbers as they counted the mud buns onto the baking trays and added leaves and twigs as candles and decorations.
24 Jun 16
This week in Forest School at Oakwood the children have been very creative making stick men from the resources they have found in the garden.
They have learnt how to use secateurs safely and cut their sticks to size. This type of environmental art is great fun and a huge learning activity. The children learnt sequencing and ordering deciding which sticks to use, how long they needed
Babies Baking in the Mud Kitchen
17 Jun 16
The babies at Oakwood House have had a wonderful time this morning playing in their mud kitchen. They have added water, mixed, sat in it, moved it…
Mud kitchens even for the youngest children offer endless learning opportunities such as the stimulation of their senses, hand eye co-ordination, cause and effect and gross motor skills to name but a few. This is a wonderful open ended
Fly Fly Away
17 Jun 16
The children at Oakwood House have had an exciting time learning about the life cycle of a caterpillar. The caterpillars came in a tub along with some special food and the children observed them daily to see how quickly and how much the caterpillars grew. The children were amazed to see the caterpillars then build a cocoon around themselves.
The caterpillars, in their cocoon, were then
Secret Fairy House
16 Jun 16
The children at Oakwood House found a ‘secret’ fairy house hiding in the bushes and trees.
They looked in amazement at the detail in the house “look it has a slide and a chimney”, it even glittered!
We put leaves and berries inside for the fairies to eat when they return “the door is closed now, maybe just the fairies
The Giant at Oakwood!
15 Jun 16
The Giant has left another letter in the forest today, asking the children to make some ‘bunting’ for him to have a party in the wonderful house the children built for him last week!
The children set off around the garden to look for different coloured natural materials, to make a colourful party bunting.
We spoke about numbers and symmetry and the children
Celebrating the Queens Birthday
10 Jun 16
This month the Portland House Poppy room celebrated the Queen’s birthday at out Stay & Play session.
The children joined in with different creative activities using the colours red, white and blue and making flags. The children especially enjoyed playing pass the parcel with their friends.
Daisy room news
10 Jun 16
The Daisy room children at Portland House have enjoyed exploring the sensory tub with pasta, lentils and oats. We have been practising using our physical skills scooping, filling and pouring into pots and pans.
Buttercups at play!
10 Jun 16
the Buttercups at Portland have been having lots of sensory activities. They loved our ‘beach’ tray with sand, shells and pebbles. The children have also explored messy activities and loved the garden in the rain, where mud was the main attraction.
09 Jun 16
The Bluebells at Portland House have been excitedly experimenting with our new sound wall recently, discovering new ways to make loud and quiet sounds.
We have also incorporated it into our circle times, singing songs along to the rhythms made.
Yoga with the Bluebells
06 Jun 16
The Bluebells at Portland House have recently enjoyed taking part in their first Yoga class.
The children met Auntie Lisa, their teacher, who taught them how to do various stretches and movements along to a narrative story, this week we made sandwiches and went to the fun fair together.
The children were encouraged to listen and follow instructions and learnt the meaning of the
Walk in Lindley
02 Jun 16
Pre-school 1 enjoyed a local walk today to Lindley. We went to the library and loved choosing stories to listen to and talking about what kind of books we would like to buy at the Children’s Bookshop.
The children loved looking around the book shop and spoke about all the different books that they have at home and what they like to read with their families.
01 Jun 16
Today the Daisy and Buttercup children have been joined by Alison from Melody Makers for some musical fun and dance.
All the babies got involved listening to rhymes, exploring colours of ribbons and moving them in different ways, up and down and side to side. Alison had brought her guitar with her which the babies were fascinated by, wanted to touch and tried to have a go.<
A bridge to safety!
01 Jun 16
Today in our forest school session the children enjoyed making a bridge out of natural materials to build over the Trolls cave. The children worked really hard together to move some very big logs around the garden. They used fantastic problem solving skills to figure out how to move the logs.
Some of the logs were too heavy so one child shouted to his friends "we're
Children’s interests in spiders!
26 May 16
Preschool children have been on the hunt for mini beasts! They have spotted some big spiders in the basement area at Holly Bank Nursery. The spiders ignited their imaginations and creativity skills and many of the pre-schoolers enjoyed using different materials to create their own spiders!
Our fantastic spiders will be on display in the basement.
24 May 16
Today in our forest school session we made and moulded our very own mud creatures to hide around the garden. We discussed the properties of mud and learnt that if we added water it went sticky! We looked at different shapes and one child said “I want a long shape” another said “I would like mine to be circle”.
We looked at each
17 May 16
After our recent Earth Day Stay and Play the toddlers have done an excellent job at looking after our beans and carrots that we planted. The children have enjoyed taking the watering cans into the garden and also getting their hands stuck in the soil pulling out weeds.
A group of children noticed our beans were getting bigger so decided to have a closer look. “Them
12 May 16
Working in teams of two, the pre-school children took part in some woodwork activities using a range of tools from hack saws to screwdrivers and hammers.
Before they started, the children took part in a safety discussion where we talked about how to be careful and sensible.
Allowing them to manage risk and learn a range of new skills, the pre-schoolers worked on
10 May 16
Today in the baby room we have enjoyed making music using lots of different instruments to create loud and soft sounds, both fast and slow.
We encouraged all the children to use the instruments themselves and sang songs such as “Twinkle Twinkle” and our favourite “Horsey, Horsey” because we liked the “clip-clopping” noise the wooden instruments made!
OUTSTANDING again for Harlequin Nursery!
03 May 16
We are delighted to announce that Harlequin have once again been awarded an ‘Outstanding’ grade by Ofsted in all categories!
We would just like to say a big congratulations and well done to all the staff who have done so well to achieve this working together as a new team. The high quality childcare and education we provide would not be possible without all their
02 May 16
Lots of the children have been talking about a troll that is living in our forest area but we don’t see him because he is scared of all the children and staff at the nursery.
To show the troll that we are very kind and caring, the pre-school children worked together making a large card and present to send to the troll.
Cooking up a Storm!
28 Apr 16
Today during our forest session the children discovered a letter sent from the fairies, telling them that the Sneezy Dragon had been to visit again and eaten all of their food! “We can make them some more!”
The children made two teams and set off to find different, natural materials to use as ‘dinner’. They created a 2 course meal together.
Healthy Body Happy Me
28 Apr 16
NDNA’s Annual Healthy Body Happy Me campaign encourages better health and happiness by giving children ideas for play, learning and fun, sponsored by Hope Education and Citation Professional Solutions. Each day of the week-long campaign has a special theme promoting healthy messages with fun activities, tips and ideas.
At Harlequin children were taking a look at themselves in the mirror. The children in the Poppies
25 Years of OUTSTANDING Childcare!
20 Apr 16
This summer we will be celebrating 25 years of outstanding childcare!
With four nurseries in the Huddersfield area, we have continually strived to provide local families with the highest standard of early years care and education for generations and have truly become part of the community.
Owners Rosemary and Michael Murphy both qualified teachers opened their first nursery Portland House in September 1991 followed in later years