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Our Settings

Hordle Explorers Nursery has one main aim: to provide a safe and secure ‘home from home’ for your child where they can develop emotionally, physically and intellectually. 

We know that the best indicator of our success is happy children and the happiest children are those who are stimulated through their environment, supported by a caring, trustworthy and nurturing team.

Our most recent OFSTED inspection took place in February 2022 and we are delighted to say we retained our 'Outstanding' in every area. 

We are proud of our nursery and our team offer excellence in Early Years, with a wealth of experience across the setting. We offer the highest quality care for every child, tailoring activities for the children with life skills embedded at the very core. One of our key aims is to provide outstanding transition into school settings, delivering happy, confident and curious children who are ready to learn. With this in mind, all staff promote and develop each child's 'school readiness' during their time at HEN, developing a child's awareness of their own feelings and how they are able to express these, recognising their own name and developing the ability to toilet independently.

Team Nest 

Our nurturing, nursery environment, the Nest, has been designed specifically with our youngest learners in mind. The Nest provides a space where the children can safely navigate the many stimulating activities and play resources that are provided.

Our caring nursery practitioners aim to provide a home from home and create relationships with each child that are unhurried and allow time in-the-moment with each other. Through these relationships, all children are nurtured and supported to take part in a wide and varied range of activities during their time with us. 

In our large indoor room, children are encouraged to explore activities and provocations that are focused on their individual interests. Nursery practitioners help children to develop independence and build resilience by helping them to be active in their play choices.  Our nursery practitioners are skilled in following the child’s lead and playing alongside them to extend their learning and assist them to develop a range of skills.

Our stimulating ‘home corner’ role-play allows children to engage in re-enacting roles such as cooking, feeding babies or working from home. Our children particularly like making cups of tea for visitors.

Another popular space is our playdough station, where the children enjoy exploring the different colours and scented dough on offer. Nursery practitioners encourage the children's physical development in this area by showing and encouraging children to squeeze and pinch the dough before beginning to show children how to use simple tools. 

Children can also choose to take part in a wide range of creative activities. They explore mark making using a range of chunky crayons, pencils, chalks and paint. We like to offer children experiences using different creative materials and consider the creative process more important than the end product.

Our cosy book corner and small world area is well-loved and children enjoy settling down to share stories with nursery practitioners. The children are free to explore the small world and construction toys to develop their imaginative play, with adults promoting language development by narrating what children are doing. 

The Nest garden is a beautiful space where children can experience first hand the joys of nature in an age-appropriate way, whether that is watching spring bulbs emerge from our flower beds, splashing in puddles, bird watching or sharing a snack under a blanket fort in sunny weather. 

We have an all-weather canopy that allows children to spend time outside regardless of the weather, along with some shade provided by trees. 

Our digging area is a wonderful space for the children to explore and they enjoy using the dumper trucks to move stones and mud around in this area. We know that digging is very good for developing children's core and gross motor skills and we provide a range of tools to aid this development. 

Children love the music tree where a variety of musical instruments, natural and traditional, are readily available. Nursery practitioners engage children here in making music and singing a range of songs and rhymes. The children also enjoy using the floaty scarves to move and dance to music, which is a joy to watch. 

Each day children are invited to take part in short, playful group story times with a nursery practitioner which supports the development of language and encourages a love of time together. 

A Day in the Life of a 'Chick'

Coming Soon

Team Wild

Welcome to the Wild classrooms and gardens, where beautiful environments have been carefully designed to create a fun and stimulating learning environment for young children. Our nursery practitioners are kind and caring and are committed to ensuring that there are always fun, stimulating opportunities available, and that all children are nurtured and supported to take part in a wide and varied range of activities during their time with us. 

The Wild garden is a really special place and forms a huge part of our everyday provision; the children can independently access this beautiful outdoor space at all times of the day. Two sheltered areas (and some very large trees) provide opportunities for the children to play and explore outside in all weathers (rain and shine). Our well-loved role-play shed is a popular space in which the children develop their language skills and build friendships as they pretend to be mummies, daddies, teachers, shopkeepers, cafe workers and many more important roles. The outdoor stage with instruments and dressing up is a great place for children to develop confidence to express themselves and develop their unique personalities. Our nursery practitioners feel extremely privileged to be invited to watch regular performances and concerts. 

A muddy digging area is a great space for the children to explore and they enjoy using wood, guttering and logs to build roads for the diggers. There is very often a big hole dug by the children which fills with rain and creates plenty of opportunity for the children to problem solve and use their imaginations as they work to build bridges over the top. 

Developing children’s physical strength is important to us and we promote independence wherever possible to support this. The children use outdoor taps, watering cans and buckets to collect water for gardening, mud kitchen and water play and they learn to safely work together with their friends to use large construction resources such as tyres, wood and crates to build obstacle courses, trains and houses to play in. There are lots of opportunities to make dens using fabrics and poles and the natural space full of trees and shrubs enhances this exciting play. 

Our beautiful garden environment provides fantastic opportunities for children to be curious about nature and the changing seasons. They help to grow plants and vegetables from seed, and we regularly harvest potatoes, carrots and beans for the children to sample. The children learn about birds and minibeasts and how to care for our environment and look after nature. Every year we raise frogs from frogspawn, observe caterpillars changing to butterflies and learn to look after the class stick insects. It is amazing to be able to support the children as they are filled with the awe and wonder of the natural world around them.

Inside the classroom, the children are encouraged to follow their own interests through a variety of playful activities. Our nursery practitioners are skilled in following the child’s lead and playing alongside them to extend their learning and assist them to develop a range of skills.

Children can choose to take part in a wide range of creative art activities. They learn to mark make with chunky crayons, pens, paint sticks, chalks, pastels and paint. They have free access to scissors, craft materials and glue and feel proud of the inventions and art that they imaginatively create. 

The malleable area is a popular space and the children enjoy squeezing the dough and learning to use utensils to chop and press the dough. There are lots of opportunities throughout the year to use clay too and the children have enjoyed making many clay keepsakes to take home. Messy play is very popular and we love to hear how this stimulates their language skills and a lot of giggling too. 

Team Wild love books, and they can be found all over the classroom and garden for the children to peep into, as well as in our cosy book corner which is always busy with children settling down to share stories, sing nursery rhymes and play with the story props and puppets. 

Children are free to use the small world and construction resources to develop their imaginative play.  They work together to build towns and assemble train tracks, developing their muscle strength as they crawl and play on the floor and strengthen their fingers as they manage small tasks such as dressing the dolls or making bead jewellery. 

Each day, children take part in short, playful group activities with a nursery practitioner to support the development of language, maths and to encourage a love of time together to learn.  These skills continue through the provision in which phonics, maths and language are further absorbed in the play opportunities and quality interactions that happen throughout the day. Through fun and purposeful learning, the children leave Team Wild prepared and ready to start school.

A Day in the Life of a 'Wildling'

Team Den

Welcome to DEN, our Early Years wraparound care provision. Set in a dedicated space in the main school building ,our Early Years DEN is a beautiful play-space staffed by nursery practitioners who work in Nest and Wild and are therefore known to the children and families. 

Our DEN staff plan a host of engaging, fun activities which children enjoy, such as painting, crafting, construction, exploring the adventure trail on the playground and many more. 

The children love that both nursery classes come together with our friends in Year R for DEN and this means that they get to play with a variety of children aged 2-5 years. The older children really do enjoy helping the younger ones. The children develop wonderful relationships with the staff and enjoy telling them about their day. There is also the opportunity to join the rest of the school children some days of the week to explore the library - something the children really enjoy!

For all the latest updates on what we’ve been up to at Hordle Explorers Nursery please visit our Facebook page - Hordle Explorers Nursery