01524 410286

Hampton Road

Morecambe, LA3 1EJ

Early Years

Early Years At Sandylands

Our staff

The Early Years team at Sandylands have a passion for teaching our youngest learners. We strive to provide the best learning opportunities through an awe and wonder based learning environment and a creative curriculum.

Miss McLaren- Assistant Head and Early Years Lead 

Miss McLaren has a breadth of experience in Early Years, having spent 17 years working in a number of schools, all in Early Years.

  • She has a passion for providing young children with the best start to their Learning Journey at school and she has been a Leading Foundation Teacher in Lancashire for several years.
  • Miss McLaren has also worked on Nursery Projects with PVI settings to up skill Early years Practitioners with the aim of providing better outcomes for children before they start school.
Miss Kenworthy – Class teacher 

Miss Kenworthy has worked within education settings for 22 years ranging from Early Years to Year 3.

  • She has a love for teaching children and providing the best opportunities for children to thrive.
  • Miss Kenworthy trained and qualified as a teacher in 2015 having been inspired by the many experienced practitioners she worked with.
Mrs Dixon – Nursery Lead Teacher

Mrs Dixon has taught in a number of schools over the last 29 years specialising in Early Years. She has an Early Years Professional Status qualification alongside her teaching qualification.

  • She has worked with children and parents from birth to the end of Reception at Sandylands since 2007.
  • She is passionate about providing the best possible early education and care for all children, working closely with parents and other professional to ensure that every child succeeds.

We also have 5 Early Years practitioners who work in Nursery and Reception as key workers for our children. We ensure that our children are provided with a high quality education and experiences through continuous professional development for all our staff. We regularly meet to discuss the progress of the children and planning for their next steps.

Our curriculum

We have developed a well sequenced personalised curriculum that provides the children with a sense of self identity, by learning about themselves,their families and their local community. It is a knowledge based curriculum so the children know more and remember more ,so they can continue their educational journey, deepening their understanding of subjects.

How have we developed the Sandylands way?

The curriculum is purposefully planned to provide the children with key knowledge embedded through play based learning. We want our children to have:

  • Experiences in nature, awe and wonder and learn about their local environment
  • Experience and talk about different seasons, weather and being outside as much as possible to provide these experiences.
  • Develop as an effective communicator.
  • Self-regulation and emotional development is key to help the children express their thoughts and feelings. We use mood monsters to encourage and model to the children how we name and talk about feelings.
  • Keep themselves safe.
  • Look after our environment.outside and inside. Looking after toys, resources, recycling paper, outdoors plants, animals in our environment, our seaside locality.
  • Value each other and our belongings
  • Physical development, being one of the prime areas is also a key element in Nursery. The children develop both fine and gross motor skills including the development of core strength which enables them to sit for writing.
  • Sustainability for our local areas and within school.

Here is a link to a virtual tour of the Reception learning Environment.

Virtual tour of Reception

Language Development, Reading and Writing

  • Language and communication are fundamental life skills that children need to be successful with all aspects of their learning.
  • Our youngest learners have showed a low start point in these areas at the beginning of the year and so this has shaped our curriculum to cater for their needs.
  • Early language development is at the forefront of all learning in the EYFS.
  • Language development is planned for.
  • Staff incorporate key vocabulary into their modelling.
  • Language is displayed.
  • Question based learning is promoted by adults to allow children to develop their vocabulary.
  • WELLCOM screening and intervention is used to support the development of speech and language in nursery. Children are identified and from assessment and specific sessions are planned for and assessed to ensure progression.

Early Reading is at the forefront of all learning and our children are given as many opportunities as possible to access books.

  • Our reading areas promote awe and wonder of reading
  • Adults model reading
  • Books to access in all areas of the provision.
  • Badger Breaks- reading times are timetabled.
  • Weekly children’s library .
  • Reading after school clubs.
  • Our Reception Reading Area below

Read Write Inc Phonics

At Sandylands we follow the Read Write Inc phonics scheme. It allows for a clear learning of sounds, progression in skills and effective assessment.

We ensure that books are clearly matched to the children’s phonic abilities and progresses through the stages as the children’s skills develop.

RWI in Nursery focus on early listening skills. The children investigate different sounds, talk about RWI picture cards, develop vocabulary, begin oral blending, listen to stories with rhythm, rhyme and alliteration. The children love the many nursery rhymes and learning them off by heart!


Reading a story

Checking the recipe book to make the cakes

Mr Wolf pretending to be Grandma “All the better to see you with.”

Talking with friends

Mark making

Singing Baa Baa Black sheep then cutting the wool to put in his bag.

Parent as partners in learning

Working with our families is an important part of a childs’ school journey and we value the partnerships enabling school to be successful for all.

  • We love to invite parents into school so the children can show their new knowledge and skills.
  • We provide the children with home learning packs that replicate school resources in Phonics and Maths.
  • We have ‘Cake and Curriculum’ Evenings to share resources and strategies that we use in school.
  • We share the children’s weekly learning via messages on parent app.
  • We have Tapestry accounts for all our Early Years families so they can share learning from home and school.
  • Our parental surveys provide a great insight into the childrens’ learning.
  • 100% of our current Reception parents thought that the children were settled into Sandylands, had progressed in their learning and the school home learning packs were very useful for them at home.

Extended schools and clubs

We offer the children a weekly after school club which is always very popular.

The school also offers Breakfast and After school club care from 7.30am until 5.30pm.

More information

Breakfast Club

After School Club

Additional Nursery information

Nursery are able to offer both 15 and 30 hour funded places to all eligible 3 year olds and we have a limited number of places for funded 2 year olds.

During the sessions the children have access to both the indoor and outdoor environment.

Our morning sessions are 8.45am to 11.45am

Our afternoon sessions are 12.20pm to 3.20pm

Our full day sessions are 8.45am to 2.45pm or 9.00am to 3.00pm.

You are able to choose whichever sessions work best for you and your child (provided there are spaces in those sessions)

Lunch for the full day children is from 11.45 to 12,20pm. The children can either bring a packed lunch or they are able to purchase a school meal which is cooked in the school kitchen and brought over to the nursery. The nursery children stay in the nursery to have their lunches and are supervised by experienced welfare staff with nursery staff also available if needed.

8:45-9:05am9:05-9:15am9:15- 11.10am11:10am11:20am11:40am
MorningChildren arrive

Free choice

Keyworker group timeFree flow continuous provision indoors and outdoors

Adult Led activities/Phonics



Maths morning group

Story TimeAm children coats ready for home

Full Day

Physical time

Wash hands

AfternoonChildren arriveAfternoon Group Time

Full Day Story Time


Free flow continuous provision indoors and outdoors

Adult Led activities/Phonics


Maths afternoon groupStory timeRhymes and songs

Physical time

Home time

If you wish to apply for a place at the nursery or would like to book to come and look round please call the main school office on 01524 410286 or alternatively email [email protected]

For information regarding 30 hour funding please click on the link below

For information regarding funding for 2 year olds please click on the link below

Last Updated on January 3, 2023

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