Nursery News


Children in Need Event

Children in Need Event

21 Nov 14

To support this year’s funding event for Children in Need the children and staff at Portland House Nursery came dressed as their hero or favourite superhero. The Bluebell children joined in activities such as making super hero dust, face painting, and guess the name of the teddy, making hero masks and outfits. The nursery children had been busy creating an assortment of home baking delights and along

Read more »


Autumn Play

Autumn Play

13 Nov 14

As we approach the tail end of Autumn and we're about to embrace Christmas (and with it Winter), there are still plenty of natural play resources falling from the trees to enjoy this type of activity for a few weeks yet with your children.

Autumn Play dough The no-cook play dough recipe can keep for months in the fridge if wrapped up in clingfilm or plastic

Read more »


All about Eid

All about Eid

22 Oct 14

At Portland Nursery, Amir’s daddy came into Bluebells to lead a very special group time, talking about Eid. We learnt that it is a celebration similar to Christmas for Muslims. At Eid children and adults dress up in special party clothes, eat lots of treats and play fun games with friends and family. They pray on special mats to show they are thankful for such a special

Read more »


Go Bananas

Go Bananas

17 Oct 14

The children in the Bluebell room engaged in a morning of monkey mischief as they enjoyed having special friends which were cheeky chimps visiting bluebells today.

The children entertained toy monkeys at a chimps tea party. The mischievous monkeys devoured an assortment of banana delights that the children busily created at the play dough activity table such as banana sandwiches; banana bread, cakes, soup and even banana

Read more »


Group Time - People who help us

Group Time  - People who help us

09 Oct 14

Today we had a very special group time led by our new friend Hector. He is spending some time visiting with the preschool children in Bluebells before he goes to work in Canada where he will be teaching young children 4-5 years old how to learn to ski.

Hector spoke to the children all about his favourite sport which is Skiing and brought in some of his

Read more »


A little stars trip down memory lane

A little stars trip down memory lane

02 Oct 14

Anjali Singh who is now 16 years old attended Portland House nursery in June 2001 came back to visit Portland House Nursery to say hello to her key person Pam and Debbie to give them pictures that she had made them as a special ‘Thank you’ for looking after her. Pam, the Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCO) who specialises in working with children with additional needs, had worked closely

Read more »


‘The Zagaro’ Zoo lab visit

‘The Zagaro’ Zoo lab visit

21 Sep 14

Zoolab came to visit the Bluebells and Sunflowers preschool children and retold their own version of the much loved children’s story ‘The Gruffalo’ using exotic animals to illustrate the tale. The children listened attentively to the story as the heroic Gordon the rat took them on a trip through the deep dark wood and introduced them to a host of fantastic animals along the way

Read more »


Second Generation of Childcare

Second Generation of Childcare

17 Sep 14

This is Oscar Beeby who has just turned one year old, with his Mummy Lucy Haigh.

Oscar has just started Nursery at Portland House where his Mummy Lucy attended as a child over 20 years ago. Anne Watson and Julie Lister who have been with the company over 20 years looked after Lucy when she was a baby and now will care for Oscar too!

Lucy along

Read more »


Never Too Young To Play

Never Too Young To Play

12 Aug 14

On Friday 8th August children from Portland House Nursery and Holiday Club took part in one of their regular fun Rugby sessions. Portland Nurseries’ General Manager Michael Murphy, not long back from his rugby career playing for Cootamundra in Australia, led the session with a helping hand from Harrison Lister; one of Portland House’s own alumni. 

Harrison attended Portland House Nursery from the

Read more »


Mud Marvellous Mud

Mud Marvellous Mud

30 Jul 14

The children at Portland House have been spending lots of time mixing up a treat in their new state of the art Mud Kitchen!

They have been making mud pies and mud soup and even some mud irthdya cakes!

Mud provides a fantastic sensory experience and provides endless options for experimentation and discovery about materials and textures. Mud connects the children directly with the natural

Read more »


Tour de France Fun for Portland Toddlers

Tour de France Fun for Portland Toddlers

07 Jul 14

To celebrate Le Tour De France the toddler and preschool children of Portland House nursery in Lindley have been rapidly racing round obstacles for their charity bike ride on Friday 4th July 2014.

The fun and colourful obstacle course was set up in the nursery’s outdoor area and the children were challenged to complete as many laps as possible. Each little rapid racer was sponsored by

Read more »


Circle Time

Circle Time

09 May 14

WHAT IS CIRCLE TIME?

At Portland Nurseries we believe that Circle Time is an activity where a group of children and practitioners sit together (at the same level) with the purpose of creating space in which children can communicate. It is about discussion, reflection, emotional understanding, personal identity and making connections. Exploring Relationships, feelings, reflections and emotions lies at the core of Circle Time.

Circle

Read more »


Easter Education at Portland House

Easter Education at Portland House

17 Apr 14

Today we had Suzanna's Mummy Deborah Hopkinson come and visit us all at Portland House!

Deborah who is currently on maternity leave after recently giving birth to wonderful twins is a local minister and came into nursery to talk to the children about the true meaning of Easter. The Oreschool children were delighted to have another visitor at Circle Time and learnt all about the

Read more »


Portland Nurseries Staff Training Day

Portland Nurseries Staff Training Day

11 Apr 14

On Tuesday 1st April 2014 Portland Nurseries brought over 80 of their employees together from their four sites, Harlequin, Holly Bank, Oakwood House and Portland House to enhance and develop their childcare practice at their Annual Training Day.

As a company we have always put a strong emphasis on continual training and development, holding the Investors in People award for 13 years and ensuring that the staff are trained above

Read more »


Book Week at Portland House

Book Week at Portland House

14 Mar 14

We would like to thank all the parents who came in each day last week to help celebrate of World Book Day by sharing their favourite stories from home .

Portland House also had a visit from the Mobile Library on Friday 7th March. In small groups we had the opportunity to explore around the bus and we learnt how to handle books with care. The librarian had

Read more »


The Friendly Giant at Portland House

The Friendly Giant at Portland House

10 Feb 14

Recently while the Bluebell children were playing outside, one of the children found a HUGE footprint in the mud. From this the staff members helped the children's imaginations and creative thinking run wild, forming a story about a BIG FRIENDLY GIANT who visits the Portland House garden. Read on to hear all about their adventures....

One day while playing in the garden Calum found some footprints

Read more »


Healthy Hair Fun at Portland Preschool

Healthy Hair Fun at Portland Preschool

03 Jan 14

To link in with our 'Health and Self-care' early learning goal we invited Oscars mummy Louise to join us for circle time sessions. Louise owns her own hair salon and she talked to the children about how to keep their hair healthy and showed them some super photos of the salon, how customers have their hair washed, different hairstyles and what the inside of their hair follicles look like.

Read more »


A Christmas Visit to the Garden Centre

A Christmas Visit to the Garden Centre

19 Dec 13

The Bluebell children from Portland House took a magical trip to the garden centre last week! The children saw glowing sparkling sights of an array of colours, rows of tinsel, bobbing baubles and artic animals. After walking along the enchanted path through the forest of glistening trees they peeped in Santa’s grotto and saw Rudolph with his glowing red nose peeking out from behind a tree. They

Read more »


Portland’s Poppies & Sunflowers

Portland’s Poppies & Sunflowers

21 Oct 13

In May this year Portland House Poppies Room had an outdoor Stay and Play devoted to planting, where children and parents could choose to plant an array of seeds. 

Liam and Jack chose sunflowers! They took them home and cared and nutured them so that they grew and grew! Here they are looking very proud of their amazing sunflowers! (click on the photo to see how

Read more »


Portland House Thanks Anne Watson for 20 Years Service

Portland House Thanks Anne Watson for 20 Years Service

23 Sep 13

Staff and children gathered today to congratulate Anne Watson for being the first employee at Portland Nurseries to have worked for the company for twenty years. Anne was presented with a beautiful bouquet of flowers, a Spa Voucher and a company Holiday Voucher. Staff receive a five day holiday voucher for every five years of service and this will mean that Anne has been rewarded with and extra twenty

Read more »


Victory for the early years sector

Victory for the early years sector

07 Jun 13

A big thank you to those parents who signed the petition demanding the Government rethink plans to change staffing ratios. Nick Clegg announced today that this would no longer be happening.

There has been a lot of coverage in press and on TV and we have provided a link below to what I consider to be a fairly reasoned response. Asking staff, no matter how well qualified,

Read more »


Story time with Puppets

Story time with Puppets

24 May 13

Story time with puppets at Portland 

Daisy led a story time with her friends in Bluebells today and superbly  narrated the story of the '3 Little Pigs'using the puppet theatre and puppets as props. She was highly descriptive in her story telling skills, using intonation adapting her voice, rhythm and phrasing to describe the story to her captivated audience and reduce her proud staff to

Read more »


Anayah’s Caribbean Carnival

Anayah’s Caribbean Carnival

23 May 13

The children at Portland House experienced a very special Stay and Play. Anaayah's family all came down to the nursery to join in our very own Caribbean Carnival. Anayah's Mummy and Daddy, Grandma, Auntie and siblings all came along to join in the fun.

Everyone joined in to dance, there was a game of Limbo, food tasting, hair braiding and we all came together to

Read more »


Pre-loved donations

Pre-loved donations

07 May 13

The nurseries recently asked parents to donate any pre-loved baby equipment such as cots, moses baskets, prams, car seats and stair gates for a special collection for the local charity Talkthru.

The charity would like to thank all the families that donated items to their baby equipment project, all of which will go to families who are experiencing financial hardship. Several items have gone out to clients

Read more »


Make a change today

Make a change today

15 Feb 13

The Minister Elizabeth Truss has recently published a highly controversial paper “More Great Childcare”.  There are a number of proposed changes but a key issue is her proposal to change the staffing ratios in order to force nurseries to reduce fees to parents. While we agree with the principle of making childcare affordable we do not agree that forcing staff to care for larger groups is

Read more »


Snow time

Snow time

29 Jan 13

The children have had a wonderful time playing in the snow over the last couple of weeks.  They have been sledging, throwing snow balls, making snow angels, snowmen, snow dogs and even a snow woolly mammoth.

Here are some of the benefits that snow play can bring to your child

There are many benefits to children’s development through the provision of snow

Read more »


Star performance for the residents at Lindley Grange

Star performance for the residents at Lindley Grange

29 Jan 13

A group of pre-school children from Portland House spent a lovely morning at Lindley Grange Care Home for a special story telling session. They performed one of their  favourite fairy tales 'Goldilocks and the 3 Bears' and sang songs. They even did this twice for the residents downstairs and upstairs.  

One of our nursery children Isla who doesn't’t usually come to nursery on

Read more »


Children helping children

Children helping children

18 Dec 12

The children, parents and staff at Portland Nurseries have been donating toys to our local charity the Forget Me Not Children’s Hospice to help raise funds this Christmas.

The Forget Me Not Children’s Hospice has been raising awareness around their toy appeal over recent weeks, and we have shown our support with many kind donations from our families. 

Children at

Read more »


Pyjama party for Children in Need

Pyjama party for Children in Need

27 Nov 12

Well done to all the children, staff and parents at Portland House who raised £193 for Children in Need. The children came to nursery dressed in their favourite pyjama's. There was a bun and cake sale and the nursery raffled a Pudsey bear sponge cake which was won by Lachlan in Pre-school. We also auctioned  a signed 'Huddersfield Town Football' which was won by Amanda in Poppies.

Read more »


Jan White renowned expert in Outdoor Play leads company training day

Jan White renowned expert in Outdoor Play leads company training day

06 Nov 12

We were very lucky to have Jan White, the world renowned expert on Outdoor play lead our staff training day this month. Jan posed the question  “How can our outdoor space become an ‘enabling environment’ with the potential to support each child to be a unique, competent learner and to make progress at their own pace in a challenging and enjoyable way?”

Read more »


Nursery Staff applaud Outstanding Contribution to Special Needs and their Rising Stars

Nursery Staff applaud Outstanding Contribution to Special Needs and their Rising Stars

06 Nov 12

All 80 staff from Harlequin, Holly Bank, Oakwood House and Portland House Nurseries gathered at the Textile Centre for Excellence on Friday November 2nd 2012 for their training day followed by the Portland Nurseries Annual review and Awards presentation.

Pam Burrell, who has worked at Portland House for over 15 years, received an Outstanding Contribution Award for her work across all four nurseries for Special Needs. Rosemary Murphy OBE  

Read more »


Outstanding Achievement

Outstanding Achievement

05 Oct 12

A big thank you to all the parents, family and friends who have helped us raise an outstanding £4752 for our chosen charity the Forget Me Not Children's Hospice. 

Fundraising highlights have included a Den Making Festival, where the children, staff and parents came together to build their own dens out of the nurseries natural woodland resource’s, Sponsored Olympics, Tandem Sky Diving, Travelling

Read more »


A bug’s life

A bug’s life

11 Sep 12

We are expecting a number of new guests to check into Portland House this Autumn at our very own Bug Hotel! Over the summer the children have been helping to create a bug hotel at the bottom of the garden  which will provide a rich habitat to encourage a range of mini beasts to visit our garden. The nursery families and staff have all joined in collecting materials

Read more »


Transition to school

Transition to school

18 Jul 12

Starting school is a big step for both the child and their family. We work in partnership with parents and the local schools to fully prepare your child for the new challenge.

We invite our parents to a presentation on the transition process into school and the practices we have in place at nursery to ensure a smooth transition for all children and parents.

We

Read more »


Tummy Time

Tummy Time

18 Jul 12

It’s Tummy Time in the Baby Room at Portland House. Tummy time is a great way for your baby to strengthen their neck muscles to prepare them for crawling. It also helps them to get ready to push up,  move from side to side, roll over, sit up, and eventually stand. 

The babies at Portland have been interacting with the staff, playing with

Read more »


Butterflies and chicks

Butterflies and chicks

11 Jul 12

We have been looking very closely at animal life cycles at Portland over the recent months. The children have watched caterpillars change into beautiful butterflies and have let them go in the nursery garden. We have also been on incubator watch while we waited for our 12 eggs to hatch into chicks. 

Read more »


Thumper

Thumper

11 Jul 12

The children at Portland House have a new furry friend, Thumper the rabbit. He is white and grey and lives in a special hut outside in the nursery garden. We introduced the pet rabbit as a result of following the children’s interests in life cycles and also their pets at home.

Introducing pets into the nursery environment enables the children to learn how to take

Read more »


Start Pre-school with us

Start Pre-school with us

13 Jun 12

The transition into pre-school is a very special milestone in your child’s development. Your child will have grown in confidence and ability and is now ready to develop all the skills needed for the new challenge of school. Our pre –school rooms are led by Early Years Professionals (EYPs) and childcare practitioners who plan for the individual needs of each child.

Read more »


Get Children Outdoors

Get Children Outdoors

29 May 12

We have found a great website which is all about inspiring  parents and teachers to find new ways of using the world beyond their front door to connect to their children and foster their sense of identity. 

There are some really fun ideas to do outside with your children from Mud Pies, Leaf Kebabs to Build an Imaginary Land. Follow the link to the

Read more »


Mark making to music

Mark making to music

21 May 12

A large roll of paper, 4 buckets of paint, different sized brushes and disco music, the perfect combination for mark making with paint.

A very excited group of toddlers from Portland House spent the morning mark making to disco music with the help of Assunta our toddler room practitioner. The children loved this activity they moved round the paper using all the brushes and colours; swirling, hand-printing, wellington-stomping,

Read more »