Nursery to expand as part of redevelopment
By Lyndsay Oxley - Reporter
A BARNARD Castle nursery has announced expansion plans in an effort to provide youngsters with an improved learning environment.
Green Lane Nursery is preparing to take over the existing reception classroom at the neighbouring primary school.
An additional outdoor space will be transformed into an eco garden.
Nursery manager Mel Mitchell said: “We have always wanted more space.
“We have outgrown this room now. It is going to be great to have an extra space and another outdoor area that we can develop.
“We plan to reduce numbers in our current rooms while still adhering to the correct ratios of adults to children.
“We believe this will help us to ensure all children receive a more personalised and unique experience.”
Work is due to start next month.
It is hoped the new space will be up and running when the children return from their Easter holidays.
Ms Mitchell said: “We have lots of ideas for our new room and existing space to continue to develop our setting so that it is a home from home for all children.
“We also plan to develop the new outdoor area into a space where children are learning real-life skills and the need to respect and care for our environment.
“We hope this will raise awareness of important issues such as recycling and growing your own food.”
She added: “An eco garden will also develop a sense of pride and ownership in the children generating respect for other local green spaces.”
As part of the changes, staff and children in the school’s early years department are also on the move.
Reception children will be taught in a bigger space. The room, which is currently used to host after school clubs, will be transformed into a forest school.
Deputy headteacher and early years leader, Nic Linsley, said: “We are really passionate about forest school.
“We are hoping to create a forest school inside and outside with natural resources and teach the children about the environment. We are really excited.”
The new early years space also features a large outdoor area which will be transformed.
It will include an outdoor kitchen and tyre swing as requested by the children.
The work is being paid for using school funds, a donation from the Friends of Green Lane Primary and Nursery School and other grants which have been applied for.