New starter FAQ
What do I need to do in advance of my child starting playgroup or preschool?
1. Complete the “All about me” booklet and bring this with you for your child’s first session.
2. Make sure that we have contact details for you and an alternate contact in case of an emergency.
3. If your child is not toilet-trained make sure that you have provided a spare nappy, wipes and a change of clothes. We can help with toilet-training when you and your child are ready.
Which entrance do I use for playgroup?
Use the entrance opposite the library in the Community Centre.
Which entrance do I use for preschool?
Preschool sits within Overton Primary School. Use the first school gate, the preschool entrance is at the top of the path.
What should my child wear?
The children play outdoors at all times of year, except extreme weather conditions. We often get very messy and wet (outside water play), we recommend that you send your child in clothes that you don’t mind getting messy and are weather appropriate. No crocs or flip flops. We do have a range of branded clothing which might make life a bit easier, speak to a member of staff if you’d like to know more.
What do we need to bring?
1. A bag with a name tag and a change of clothes.
2. A coat/fleece/wellies/sunhat if appropriate (all items to be named please).
3. A spare nappy and wipes if your child is wearing nappies.
4. You can bring some fruit/vegetables for our cafe.
5. A named lunch box/bag with named bottle of water if your child is staying for lunch.
6. Optional - an item for the "show box". The show box (a pink bucket) is just inside the door. Your child can place items in here and during 'carpet time' they can talk about the item or simply show it to everyone.
Do I need to bring a snack?
You can bring some fruit or vegetables from home. We run a cafe type snack table which opens at 10am and finishes at 11.15am. The children can sit down for a snack at any time. We encourage all children to come and have a drink. Snack can consist of fruit, raisins, rich tea biscuit.
The children are encouraged to make their own selection and collect cup, plate, etc.
Do I need to bring lunch?
If your child is going to be finishing their day after 12pm then you will need to provide them with a packed lunch, including a drink. The children will sit down and eat their lunch together from 12pm-12.45pm, along with the staff. In line with Overton Primary School’s “Dump the Junk” campaign, we encourage parents to bring in healthy food. In addition, we ask parents/carers not to include products that contain nuts. Please think about safety when packing lunch, for example cut grapes in half as these can be a choking hazard.
What happens when I bring my child in/what is the best way to settle them?
Each child/parent is unique and you must do what suits you best when leaving your child at playgroup. It seems to work well if you try and settle your child at an activity before saying goodbye. You are welcome to stay for as long as you feel you need to. If you need assistance when it’s time to say goodbye, please ask a member of staff for help.
How do you handle allergies?
Please advise us as soon as possible, if your child has ANY allergies, no matter what they are. In addition to making sure they don’t eat something they shouldn’t at snack time, we occasionally have parents bringing pets in to see us; we also make our own play dough, so if someone has a gluten allergy we can make the dough with special flour.
Who will be taking a special interest in my child’s development?
Each child is allocated a ‘key person’ who will introduce themselves to you in September. They will be watching and monitoring your child’s development and producing a "Learning Journey" for your child. This is a folder with various observations and remarks concerning your child’s time at playgroup. We send this home with your child once a term and you are encouraged to add your own comments on the "Records of Development" section and return to playgroup once you have done so. All the staff can be approached if you have any questions. Parent’s feedback on the Learning Journeys has been really positive as it can be tricky to get your child to talk in any detail about what they get up to at playgroup. It’s also an opportunity for you to give us your own insights and observations, as often children can be very different at home.
What is the ‘All About Me’ booklet?
This is a brief questionnaire about your child. It helps your child’s key person and the other staff to get to know a little about your child before they start playgroup. It includes how they like to be comforted, do they have a special word for ‘toilet’ etc. We ask you to complete a permission consent form for first aid and medical help as well as photography. If your child has any medical issues or allergies, please let Amanda Igo, Playgroup Manager, and/or your child’s key person know. We are only allowed to administer prescription medication once we have a signed permission slip. All prescription medication is kept in a locked cupboard or fridge.
What happens if my child has an accident at playgroup?
All the staff are first aid trained and will take the necessary steps to care for your child in the best way possible. In most cases, this is a quick cuddle and a story. And when you collect your child we will ask you to check and sign the accident book. If your child sustains a more serious injury, we will contact you using your emergency contact details.
What do I do if my child is ill?
If your child is unwell on a day they are due to attend a session at playgroup, please contact us via phone or email and let us know. It would be very useful to know the nature of their illness, i.e. Chickenpox, Slapped Cheek, etc., so that we can advise other parents that we have been notified of a case. Your child’s identity will be confidential. Children with vomiting and/or diarrhoea should be kept off playgroup and preschool. They can return 48 hours after their symptoms disappear.
When do I pay my fees?
Fees are due at the start of each term and payment should be made within 10 days of receipt of the invoice. Amanda will send an invoice home with your child. We prefer that this is paid once every half- term. But, if you would prefer to pay weekly or monthly, please speak to Amanda. We also accept Childcare Vouchers; please speak with Amanda to make sure that your voucher provider is already registered with us. You can also pay via the Tax-free Childcare scheme and if you qualify you may be entitled to the universal and extended funding hours, for either of these options please speak with Amanda for more information. There is no late collection fee but if you believe you will be late to pick up your child, please call to let one of the staff know.