Our Learning Environment

Each of our individual, thoughtfully designed areas allows children to explore and discover enabling them to follow their interests whilst extending their understanding, skills and knowledge.
Children are given the freedom to explore the nursery at their own pace. Focused learning opportunities are planned on a daily basis, and resources are available to children at all times, allowing them to revisit, extend or adapt their interests and learning as they wish.

Our free flow approach acknowledges that children, just like adults, learn when they are able to explore their own interests, following their own agendas through play both indoors and outside.

We recognise that what children learn is important, but how children learn is even more important. Through play we support children to build their confidence and independence, we empower children to choose, reason, reflect, imagine and empathise.

The Baby Nest

From 6 months we have a dedicated space in which babies are cared for, allowing them to feel secure, enabling them to develop their own sense of belonging. Our “Snug” provides a safe area for non-mobile babies. The space allows babies to develop their fine and gross motor skills. The Snug is also a quiet comfy space where children can choose to rest or sail away to the land of dreams in one of our bunk cots or fold out beds.

We have selected resources with our youngest children in mind. We have treasure baskets, sand, water, “messy”, heuristic play materials, lights and mirrors to name a few. Our resources aid sensory experiences as well as an opportunity to explore and investigate in the wider environment.

Research tells us children benefit from outdoor play and at our nursery we have a continuation of play and learning experiences inside and out. All our children use the outdoor space throughout the day, in all weathers and seasons. We have all-in-one weather suits and they bring their own wellies so a bit of drizzle doesn’t put us off!


Children move up to our Toddler room they are ready new challenges in their learning and development; with partnership from parents we work closely to ensure the transition is smooth.  Here they can explore experiences including construction, imaginative play, and the exploration of materials. There are plenty of opportunities for drawing, painting and working with clay and other sculptural materials. We create open spaces for children allowing them to express themselves and from a very young age children work with light boxes and overhead projectors investigating light and shadow and exploring the shape, colour, texture and form of materials. Children start moving up to our open plan 2 year old space from after their second birthday, as and when they are ready.

The Discovery Room

We already know that children are active learners from birth and their curiosity flourishes when they are free to discover for themselves. Our Discovery Room provides children the opportunity to explore and investigate, to make new discoveries of the world around them and to reflect on how things work and why things happen. It is an ideal space for all of our future architects and mathematicians. As you enter you will see a large interactive white board that we use daily to research, explore and to share photographs and videos of learning. We have a computer, IPods and IPads which allow children to develop their understanding of and have the opportunity to explore technology to enable them to research their world.

Large wooden blocks enable children to design, represent, recreate and construct their ideas, developing fundamental skills for future learning such as involvement, motivation, and perseverance. The space also includes our home corner, stage and dressing up area were children enter the world of make believe allowing their imaginations to take over.

The Garden Room

We strongly believe all areas within the nursery encourage children to be creative and imaginative, but this area has a range of equipment and plenty of space to really let the imagination fly. Our studio space encourages painting, sticking, cutting, making and creating using a variety of resources and materials. It gets extremely messy and we wouldn’t have it any other way.

The studio supports children to experiment and investigate with everything from paint and collage to natural and recycled materials. It means the children can create their own masterpieces, at Carr Manor every child is an artist!

Our Garden Room also has a large indoor sandpit and water areas where children can pour, fill, mix, contain, and transport as they work things out. The children also develop the life skills of cooperation, negotiation and satisfaction.

The Garden and Woods Trips

We believe the outdoor learning environment is as important as indoors and we encourage children to spend as much time outside as they wish. The garden is viewed as a ‘classroom without walls’, where children can discover and explore. We have a sheltered area which enables us to enjoy the space in all weathers, however, we never let a little rain stop us. In rain/ cooler temperatures children wear our waterproof ‘outdoor suits’ with wellies, which we ask you to bring from home. Whether it’s splashing in puddles or baking in our mud kitchen we really do love our garden. There is plenty of space for running, climbing, using bikes and scooters which supports children’s physical development. Children also plant and grow flowers and vegetables too.

We also take the children on outdoor trips including regular trips the local woods. The woods are a fabulous local resources and visits allow children to negotiate uneven ground, circumnavigate logs, wildlife and precious flowers. It helps even the youngest walkers to judge risks. We are committed to offering a more heuristic and real experience of the great outdoors, which will inspire children and encourage a love and respect for nature for years to come.