Saplings Nature Kindergarten is a 15 place, term time early years education provider. We are registered with Ofsted on the Early Year and Childcare registers. You can read our latest Ofsted report here.
As part of our statutory duty, we follow the core EYFS (early years foundation stage) in our daily practice and each day our children have opportunity to develop skills in the 7 areas of development.
At Saplings, our children play. In the early years deep learning occurs through meaningful, freely chosen and engaged play, not through a series of adult planned and guided tasks. A rush to start reading and writing with too much focus on academic skills during the early years has little impact on later ability or achievement and in some cases can be damaging.
We play outside in wild places all year round in a mixed age group, with children selecting and finding the resources they need to support play. During extensive, free play children are developing all of the characteristics of effective learners while being cared for by highly experienced and skilled early years educators. Please read this document to find out more about our ethos and practice.
Our nursery is intentionally small, most sessions will have only 12 or 13 children. We believe children thrive in smaller groups with a higher ratio of adults than in a traditional early years setting, much as they would experience in a close knit extended family. By keeping our group small, we can provide more individualised care and attention.
*ALL PLACES FOR THE 2023/ 2024 ACADEMIC YEAR ARE NOW TAKEN*
WE ARE NOW ONLY ACCEPTING EXPRESSIONS OF INTEREST FOR SEPTEMBER 2024 ONWARDS
We have 2 enrolments per year, in January and September. Children can start with us in the term after their 2nd birthday and can stay with us until compulsory school age (term after they are 5). In order to register your interest in a place for your child at Saplings please use this form.
Fees & Funding
We are open from 8am -5pm Monday – Friday during County Durham School term times.
Our hourly rates are £5.60/hour for children of all ages. Children are expected to attend for a minimum of 2 days per week.
We are registered with Durham County Council to offer government funded places during term time for eligible 2 – 4-year-olds. We encourage all parents to visit www.childcarechoices.gov.uk to check what your child is entitled to in terms of funding or tax-free childcare.
A consumables charge of £1 per day is charged for all funded places and will be invoiced every half term.
To arrange a look around our setting, please use our contact form.