Our Background

About us

Why choose us?

Outdoor Learning

Outdoors is where children will experience a sense of freedom, engage with the changing seasons and nature, and develop friendships.

Individualised Care

We focus on individual care and closely interact with every child, toys and activities are carefully selected to encourage and stimulate each child’s curiosity and development

pre school nursery tilehurst reading

Skilled People

Friendly, highly qualified, with many years of experience in providing your child with the best nursery learning experience possible.

Friendly & Fun

We aim for your children to have fun and enjoy themselves while we teach them new skills.

History of Little Oaks Nursery

Little Oaks Nursery is the third nursery to be owned by Mr Duncan Highet.  Little Oaks Nursery educates and cares for, children from the ages of 3 months to 5 years.  Set within the grounds of Denefield secondary School, we have a small, self-contained, purpose built building which is totally child orientated.  There is a large fenced play area and garden, we also have access to the school facilities such as the playing fields.  We are Ofsted registered to take 21 children and we pride ourselves on our ‘home from home’ atmosphere.

 Aims of our Nursery:

– To provide high quality care and education for all children
– To provide a caring, happy and secure environment in which the children’s self-esteem and confidence are promoted in order to help them become well motivated and independent learners.
– To work in partnership with Parents to help children learn and develop

We aim to ensure that each child:

– is in a safe and stimulating environment
– is given generous care and attention, provided by our ratio of qualified staff to children
– has the chance to join with other children and adults to live, play, work and learn together
– is helped to take forward her/his learning and development by being helped to build on what she/he already knows and can do
– has a key person who makes sure each child makes satisfying progress
– is in a Nursery that sees parents as partners in helping each child to learn and develop

childrens nursery reading
little oaks childrens nursery

What we do

We are open 7.45am – 6.00pm daily, offeing both full year and term time contract.  Little Oaks nursery believes that care and education are equally important in the experience which we offer children.  The routines and activities that make up the day in Nursery are provided in ways that:

– help each child to feel that she/he is a valued member of the nursery
– ensure the safety of each child
– help children to gain from the social experience of being part of a group
– provide children with opportunities to learn and help them to value learning

 Little Oaks Nursery organises the day so that children can take part in a variety of child-chosen and adult-led activities, these take into account of children’s changing energy levels throughout the day.  The Nursery caters for children’s individual needs for rest and quiet activities during the day.  Outdoor activities contribute to children’s health, their physical development and their knowledge of the world around them.  Our aim is to create a balance between our indoor and outdoor enviornment with a strong emphasis on learning through play, giving children choices, providing opportunities for them to explore and discover the world they live in.

 Our Nursery is divided into 2 main rooms, The Poppies (3months – 2 years) and Snowdrops (2-5years)

School Readiness means that a child is ready to enter a social environment that is primarily focused on education.

 Research suggests that many aspects of children’s lives influence their preparation for formal school learning, including intellectual, social, emotional and motor development and most importantly, early home and pre-school experiences.

 In deciding if a child is ‘ready for school’ all of these factors have to be considered, as well as schools willingness and ability to adjust to individual differences in young children’s development, personalities and backgrounds.

 There is much that you as a parent can do to give your child a good start to school life, helping him or her to meet new experiences with confidence and with an enquiring mind.

 Here at Little Oaks Nursery independence is at the heart of our daily tasks and routines, when looking at school readiness, can your child:

– select their full name from a group
– wash and dry their hands independently
– Able to follow simple instructions

These are just to mention a few, As Parents, we recognise you as the first and most important educators of your children.  All Staff see themselves as partners with Parents in providing care and education for your child. There are many ways in which you can take part in your child’s learning journey, when you get to this point in your child’s development we will be here to support you.

As the owners of the nursery we have three grown up and successful children (and now our first Grandchild); all three of which have their own, unique way of expressing themselves and achieving their ‘Personal Best” everyday.

A great deal of the philosophy and approach we adopt at our nurseries is based on this experience.

Too often nurseries and Pre-schools only concentrate their time and effort on academic progress and a measurement of success that is cemented in “being the best”; not “being the best you can be”.

We focus attention on individual learning for each of the children entrusted to us. We fervently believe, and work towards the belief, that vocational progress is just as important as academic achievement.

There is no doubt in our minds, that when we say goodbye to our 4 year olds, we arm them best and prepare them more thoroughly, by ensuring they have a fabulous grounding in the EYFS goals, but also that they are happy, confident, well adjusted, friendly and generous human beings.

The ability to question without judgment, to form idea’s without criticism, to laugh without ridicule and to love without fear, is both fuel to the flames of learning and a suit of armour to the slings and arrows so often loosed by less secure individuals of any ages.

We believe that it is often not just what we do, but how we do it, that ensures we continue to succeed in our mission to turn out smart, energetic, inquisitive and likeable young people that are ready for school and ready for life

We offer 2 types of contract here at Little Oaks Nursery, Term Time and Full Year.  The Nursery is open between 7.45am   6.00pm, we only offer full day sessions.

Term Time only contracts cover 38 weeks per year, we follow West Berkshire term dates.  Fees will be charged for the whole year with a 20% discount on full time fees.  Bank Holidays will be charged.  Full Year contracts cover the whole year.  Nursery will close for 1 week between Christmas and New Year, dates to be advised.  Bank Holidays will be charged.  Where two children are placed in the nursery full time by parents on a full year contract a 10% discount will be offered to the eldest sibling.  Childcare voucher are accepted as well as tax credits for working parents.  Fees will be charged according to the current rates which will be reviewed annually.


Children start to learn about the world around them from the moment they are born. The care and education offered by Little Oaks Nursery helps children to continue to do this by providing all of the children with interesting activities that are appropriate for their age and stage of development.

 The Areas of Development and Learning comprise:

Prime Areas
– Personal, social and emotional development.
– Physical development.
– Communication and language.

 Specific Areas
– Literacy.
– Mathematics.
– Understanding the world.
– Expressive arts and design.

Our approach to learning and development and assessment

 Learning through play
Being active and playing supports young children’s learning and development through doing and talking. This is how children learn to think about and understand the world around them. We use the EYFS statutory guidance on education programmes to plan and provide opportunities which will help children to make progress in all areas of learning. This programme is made up of a mixture of activities that children plan and organise for themselves and activities planned and led by practitioners.

Characteristics of effective learning
We understand that all children engage with other people and their environment through the characteristics of effective learning that are described in the Early Years Foundation Stage as:

– playing and exploring – engagement;
– active learning – motivation; and
– creating and thinking critically – thinking.

We aim to provide for the characteristics of effective learning by observing how a child is learning and being clear about what we can do and provide in order to support each child to remain an effective and motivated learner.

We assess how young children are learning and developing by observing them frequently. We use information that we gain from observations, as well as from photographs or videos of the children, to document their progress and where this may be leading them.  We believe that parents know their children best and we will ask you to contribute to assessment by sharing information about what your child likes to do at home and how you, as parents, are supporting development.

We make periodic assessment summaries of children’s achievement based on our on-going development records. We undertake these assessment summaries twice yearly, as well as times of transition, such as when a child moves to a different setting or when they go on to school.

The progress check at age two
The Early Years Foundation Stage requires that we supply parents and carers with a short written summary of their child’s development in the three prime areas of learning and development – personal, social and emotional development; physical development; and communication and language – when a child is aged between 24 – 36 months.  Your child’s key person is responsible for completing this using information from on-going observational assessments carried out as part of our everyday practice, taking account of the views and contributions of parents and other professionals.

Records of achievement
We keep a record of achievement for each child. Your child’s record of achievement helps us to celebrate together her/his achievements and to work together to provide what your child needs for her/his well-being and to make progress.

 Your child’s key person will work in partnership with you to keep this record. To do this we will collect information about your child’s needs, activities, interests and achievements. This information will enable the key person to identify your child’s stage of progress. Together, we will then decide on how to help your child to move on to the next stage.

We’ll handle your child with care!

Get to know us better!