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Staff Recognition


Staff Recognition - July 2016

This month's staff recognition goes to all our amazing staff graduating from university. Dawn Kuzan, Carly Fyall and Rebecca Gregory have all achieved their Ba Hons in Early Childhood Studies. Well done to all our Ba Hons graduates. A big well done also to Hayley Allinson, Julie Page, Chantelle Craig, Vicky Ward and Alex Felton, who have achieved their Foundation Degree in Professional Practice. We are very proud of all your achievements. If any staff are interested in hearing about any of the staffs dissertations


Staff Recognition - June 2016

This month's staff recognition is for all staff at learning curve. It was great to see you all pull together to support Clifton in there Ofsted and to see all the information that is being passed between nurseries to improve our practice is fantastic. You have all been working really hard. Thank you for all your hard work, time and effort


Staff Recognition - May 2016

I would like to nominate Maria, Maria is doing an excellent job in Lower pre-school and is always coming up with new ideas on how she can challenge the children and staff in fun exciting ways, she is always making new crafts for all the rooms and uses a lot of her own time do make up bug hotels, tidy the garden, making sure her profiles are up to date and making sure the her room is running to an outstanding ability. Not only has Maria been continuing with her work at Butterfly she has been putting in extra hours at Clifton Lodge supporting the team and brining new ideas on how to support child development again using her own time to help out after work and at the weekends. Well done Maria and keep up the good work


Staff Recognition - April 2016

Lynsey Broughton is working extremely hard at Shepherd Lodge and is a fantastic support to Katie and the other members of staff at Shepherd Lodge. Lynsey is very prepared and starts work early to ensure her room is ready and set up for the children when they arrive. Lynsey has also been spending time outside of work making resources such as letter and sound games and also large outdoor equipment with Stephen (Mud kitchen and outdoor shop).


Staff Recognition - March 2016

Baby Room Team at Butterfly Lodge. This month I would like to nominate the Baby room team at Butterfly Lodge. Both Carly and Carla always go that extra mile to ensure that the babies and their families are happy, settled and supported with their development. They help parents by offering their professional advice when learning at home. Carly and Carla are always trying to think of new fun and exciting ways to challenge the babies and work well together as a team. They are both always smiling and happy when at work, which is recognised by staff and parents and they love entertaining the children with their singing and dancing. Congratulations Carly and Carla keep up the good work.


Staff Recognition - January 2016

This month's staff recognition award goes to Natasha Smailes. Natasha is a positive member of the staff team with her lively personality. She's developed strong caring bonds with the children and is a caring practitioner, which is a delight to see. Natasha is always willing to go that extra mile to benefit the children and staff at the nursery. She is always willing to lend a hand in running the room and often using her initiative to assist the running of the room. Well done Natasha your dedication to the nursery and the children is a credit to you.


Staff Recognition - December 2015

This month I would like to say a huge thank you to Katie Payne. Recently Katie has been working alongside Clifton Lodge in organising the pre-school Christmas party and the Christmas fair. Katie always has a smile on her face and nothing is ever too much trouble. Her supervisions of her staff team and the children's learning journeys are outstanding and really are improving outcomes for the children in our setting. This has now been taken further as she is supporting supervisions at Clifton Lodge and is currently working alongside Natalie in getting the entire staff supervisions file in order.

Thank you for all your hard work Katie.


Staff Recognition - November 2015

I would like to nominate everyone at Learning Curve Nursery Group. You all work so hard and without ALL of you we could not run such a fantastic nursery group. It is lovely to have such a hard working, dedicated and professional nursery team. Whether you work in the kitchen, are the nursery cleaner or in the nursery rooms with the children you are all very much appreciated. No matter what your role is, you ALL play a huge part in making every day at nursery a special one for both staff and children. Keep up the hard work everyone.


Staff Recognition - September 2015

This month's staff recognition award goes to all the kitchen staff for introducing a brand new tea menu for all the children. All the kitchen staff took part in our 'Great Learning Curve Bake Off', exchanging tea ideas with each other.

All the dishes were delicious and it was lovely to share recipe and cooking ideas. Well done Karen, Bev, Amanda and Lucy.


Staff Recognition - August 2015

This month's staff recognition goes to:

Melissa Wright

This month's staff recognition goes to Melissa Wright. Melissa is a kind and caring practitioner who has shown outstanding relations with children and parents, she has supported children throughout difficult transition and settling periods. Melissa is a lively and bubbly character who is always singing, doing a conga, and playing games in the garden. Melissa's professionalism has really developed through working closely with the staff in the lower Preschool and is an asset to the staff at Clifton Lodge.

Well Done!!!!


Staff Recognition - July 2015

This month's staff recognition goes to:

Rebecca Tozer

This month's staff recognition goes to Rebecca Tozer. Rebecca has worked for the company for over 7 years starting at Clifton Lodge as a student and working her way up to manager at Butterfly Lodge. This year has been a very busy year for Rebecca from helping to set up and open Butterfly Lodge to gaining her BA Honours Degree. Whilst doing all this she was also planning her own wedding. Nothing seems to faze Rebecca and she also conducts herself in a professional manner. Her dedication and commitment to her work and the company is a testament to her and all her hard work is appreciated.


Staff Recognition - June 2015

This month's staff recognition goes to:

Shepherd Lodge: Lynsey Broughton

Lynsey is a very positive member of staff; she is very organised and pro active. Putting things into place and taking on other people's ideas and contributions. If I ask Lynsey a favour to do something for me she always completes it. She is always willing to help and nothing is never too much trouble.

Clifton Lodge: Laura Moore

Laura has settled brilliantly into nursery life, and into the baby room. Laura has already formed strong bonds with the children, who love spending time with her, and has already taken on key children of her own. Laura is friendly and welcoming to both the children and parents. Laura helps to plan, prepare, and carry out engaging and exciting activities for the babies. Laura is always ready to lend a hand, and constantly uses her initiative to assist in the running of the room. Laura's enthusiasm is contagious, and she is a passionate and cheerful member of our staff team. Laura works well within the staff team, and is always willing to help and assist others.

Thank you Laura, you are an asset to our nursery!!

Butterfly Lodge: Jessica Low

Jess has worked at Learning Curve Nursery Group for 2 1/2 years, firstly working at Bluebell Lodge, before moving to Clifton Lodge as 2-3 Coordinator in May 2014. She has helped with the opening of Butterfly Lodge and supported new staff with their transitions and also helping parents and children to settle in. Jess is hard working and has been exploring new avenues where she is able to challenge the children in fun and exciting ways. She has been going out on different trips to tie in with her Culture and community topic and has taken the children to the sea life centre, Thames children centre, different parks around our area and many more. Thanks to Jess determination to get out and about into the community we have made good working relations with the facilities around us such as Thames children centre which has helped to get more children into the nursery and look around.

Bluebell Lodge: Natasha Smailes

It's lovely to see how Natasha has developed since starting at Bluebell Lodge. She has become a valuable member of the staff team. Natasha has formed some strong bonds with the children and especially her key children. She is friendly and approachable and it's been lovely to hear positive comments about Natasha from the parents in her room. We are really grateful for dedication and commitment to your job and nursery.


May 2015

Stephen McEwan, Carly Fyall & Nicole Trafford

This months Staff Recognition Award goes to Stephen McEwan, Carly Fyall and Nicole Trafford. A massive well done to; Nicole, Carly and Stephen on completing their parachute jump in aid of The British Heart Foundation. They would like to thank everybody that supported them with their fundraising for this great cause; either by buying tickets for the Mother's Day and Easter Hamper raffles, sponsoring them or sponsoring Ste to wax his legs at the Easter Fair. Altogether they managed to raise a grand total of £1200.


April 2015

Lisa Taylor

This month's staff recognition goes to Lisa Taylor. Lisa does a fantastic job as Area Manager for the nursery group. She works extremely hard and this was shown when she gained her First Class Degree and EYT last year. Her dedication, enthusiasm and passion for her work and the nursery group always shine through. Working hard to ensure she is always available to support the management team and their staff. She is always provides a wealth of new ideas.


March 2015

Amie Nicolson

This month's staff recognition award goes to Amie Nicolson. Amie's enthusiasm and dedication to Clifton Lodge Nursery is 'outstanding'. I am so proud to have such a hard working member of staff as part of my nursery group team. Every time I walk into Clifton Lodge I am impressed by the level of engagement Amie has with her staff team and the activities they plan for the children. Amie constantly provides the staff with topics and then inspires them to fully plan and celebrate each topic. For 'Chinese New Year' recently the children and staff had a competition between rooms on who made the best craft activities and who provided the most activities and learning opportunities for the children in their group. Amie has also organised for this learning to be continued at home and the children are making decorations for the hallway with their parents.
Amie's newsfeed on Facebook is informative and consistent for parents. The quality of the write-ups that Amie includes, really sells the fact that Clifton lodge is an 'outstanding' nursery provider. Every post not only describes what the children are doing but more importantly, what they are learning from doing that activity. Amie is also in touch with current news articles and events in the media and has recently written status updates on the Clifton Lodge Facebook regarding the chokables.


January 2015

Jenny MacKenzie

This month's staff recognition award goes to Jenny MacKenzie. Jenny has worked at Shepherd Lodge Nursery since 2007 and has always been a valuable and reliable member of the toddler room team. It is during Christmas time that Jenny really enthuses within her work and she thoroughly loves getting into the Christmas spirit. Jenny every year at Christmas plans and carries out lots of fun festive activities that all the toddlers' love. These range from making huge wall advent calendars, where every child has an advent door and chocolate to open, to creative Christmas cards and gifts. Thank you, Jenny for making every Christmas such a special time at Shepherd Lodge Nursery. With your endless Christmas spirit and cheer.

Jenny has also received some lovely comments and was staff member of the month from parents. Jenny is very calm and smiley and helps new children settle into the nursery. When children are upset, Jenny always calms them down. Jenny is supportive of all the staff team and is always looking out for others. Well done Jenny and thank you for all your continued hard work it is very much appreciated.


November 2014

Jenny Ashworth

It doesn't go unnoticed the commitment and dedication that Jenny shows to the baby room. She is always thinking and developing new activities and areas to help them with their learning and development. Jenny has recently redesigned all her baby balcony area with lovely autumn mobiles that the babies helped to make. She has also adapted her play room to accommodate older babies 18 months - 2 years and incorporated role play into the children's planning. Role play areas include; a vets, house, tea party and a children's birthday party scene and all the toddlers thoroughly enjoyed the valuable play experiences that these areas provided. Well done Jenny for reflecting on the needs of the children within your room and fully understanding their developmental needs.


October 2014

Shepherd Lodge Nursery

Leanne Johnston

Leanne has been supporting the staff at Shepherd Lodge and has been developing the fairy garden in the front garden. Leanne has supported the Toddler staff and Lower Pre School staff by helping with their planning, activities and action plans. Leanne has made activities to send home to the parents, to develop our home learning partnerships. Leanne has been making log labels in her own time using a hot pen which will look fantastic in the garden.
Thank you for all your hard work it is very much appreciated.

Bluebell Lodge Nursery

Anita Buckley

A big thank you to Anita for all her help and support during the recent club days. It's great to have such a creative person within the company; she's always there to call upon when you have a vision which she puts down on paper which goes beyond your expectations. Here are some examples of her creative side:
Thank you for all your hard work it is very much appreciated.

Clifton Lodge Nursery

Karen Roberts:

Karen has been an exceptional support to the nursery since starting at Clifton Lodge, helping to continue and develop the nursery menu and food dishes. Karen is now making the nursery sauces from scratch which is what we have always strived for and she has varied the vegetables in the weekly menu. Karen's kitchen as all the kitchens are; is immaculately clean and organised. Karen has become immersed into nursery life, supporting a nurturing positive culture; creating a "fat busters club" with the staff for the staff. This is having a really positive effect for all involved. Karen is a really supportive colleague.
Thank you for all your hard work it is very much appreciated.


Bluebell Lodge Nursery

Nursery Practitioner of the Year 2014

Gemma Skuja was awarded 'Bluebell Lodge Nursery Practitioner of the Year'. Gemma has worked for the company for nearly ten years, showing great commitment from the moment she started. After returning from her maternity leave Gemma started working at Bluebell Lodge Nursery, where everybody finds her a delight to work with. Everybody comments how caring and calm she is and how she is lovely in all the rooms. Gemma goes above and beyond to help anybody and is a role model to us all. Well done Gemma your hard work is appreciated.
Nominated and Written By Anne Smithen

Shepherd Lodge Nursery

Nursery Practitioner of the Year 2014

Laura Platt was awarded 'Shepherd Lodge Nursery Practitioner of the Year'. Laura has worked at the nursery for just under ten years and in that time has gained vast experience and completed a BA Honours degree in 'Early Childhood Studies' and 'Early Years Professional Status'. Laura is a natural leader and role models fun and exciting activities for the children. As a nursery we feel Laura's knowledge and experience can benefit the nursery in many ways and she will be leading education and practice within all of the rooms, working alongside the nursery practitioners and Katie. Well done Laura we really appreciate all your hard work.
Nominated and Written By Katie Southern

Clifton Lodge Nursery

Nursery Practitioner of the Year 2014

Rebecca Tozer was awarded 'Clifton Lodge Nursery Practitioner of the Year'. Rebecca is a bubbly character that has a fantastic nature with the children, parents and staff alike. Rebecca is often seen running round the garden, sharing ideas with the children or planning lots of interesting activities and outings for the children to experience. Rebecca is passionate about making the children in her care, happy, excited, engaged and valued. Rebecca is so enthusiastic about the children's learning and development, children in her care shine and prospers. Rebecca's passion for education has transformed the setting and given staff around her the tools to deliver the highest quality learning and teaching. Rebecca is a great team leader who is fair and caring with a compassionate nature. Rebecca is a great role model for the children and staff alike, thank you for all your hard work and support over the year, congratulations and keep up the good work.
Nominated and Written By Amie Nicolson


Hannah Farman - June 2014

June 2014 - This month's staff recognition award goes to Hannah Farman. Hannah has recently been promoted to lower pre-school coordinator at Bluebell Lodge. Since starting in the lower pre-school Hannah has enhanced the children's planning by aiding the staff to add personalised children's learning targets, as well as continuing with the adult led focused topics. This month the children are learning about mini beasts and Hannah has been busy looking at activity ideas and resources to enhance children's learning. Hannah has also introduced new observation sheets that staff members from all the rooms have been utilising. These observation sheets include children's well-being and level of engagement in the activity, as well as characteristics of effective learning. Hannah and her staff team are organised for each day's activities and are always up to something fun and exciting with the children. It is lovely to see such a professional, tidy and organised room. Well done Hannah and her team, keep up the good work, it is very much appreciated.


Alex Fenton - May 2013

I would like to nominate Alex Fenton for the staff recognition award. Alex started at Clifton Lodge in February 2013, and works as part of the pre-school team. Alex has already made a huge impact as part of this team, and is introducing the 'high scope' approach to learning over the next few months (plan, do and review). Alex is always friendly and pleasant to others, and always makes the effort to say hello and ask how you are. She has a lovely manner with the children and parents, and is always ready to prepare or take part in lovely activities with the children. Alex is always willing to help other people and nothing is too much trouble.

When trialing out 'island time' with the children in pre-school, Alex planned an activity that met several of the children's learning targets. Alex demonstrates an in depth knowledge of the 'Early Years Foundation Stage' and observation, assessment and planning.

Alex has enhanced the water area along with other members of staff in the pre-school, which is now specifically designed to meet learning targets for mathematics; using jugs, funnels, cups and other measuring implements.

Well done Alex - Keep up the hard work.


Laura-Platt - June 2013

Laura Platt has worked for Shepherd Lodge Nursery for the past 8 years. Laura has always been 100% dedicated and passionate about early year's education, in particular personal social and emotional development. This month's superhero topic has seen Laura's full potential. Laura has demonstrated how teaching through children's play, in a creative and charismatic manner ignites children's interest and engages children's learning. Laura has trained Grace Chester this past year and has helped to settle Rachel Pendleton into the Pre-School. Both girls have flourished under Laura's excellent leadership. During Graces interview it was evident what a capable and knowledgeable nursery practitioner she has become. Well done Laura and Shepherd Pre-School team, we are extremely proud of the high level of care and education you all provide the children in your care. Learning Curve Nurseries with practitioners such as Laura really is a great place to grow.

Special thanks from Bluebell lodge for the lovely write up that appeared in the Gazette about the Superhero Missions. The photographer from the paper took Laura's write up from the Welcome Pack and part of this was used within the article. It was very educational and professional and explained the high level of education that we deliver at Learning Curve Nursery Group.


2-3's Room Team - March 2013

I would like to celebrate and recognise Natalie Bell and all the 2-3's room team and thank them for all their hard work. Natalie and her team run a fantastic 2-3's room and go out of their way to ensure outstanding quality care and education is provided for the children within their room. Whenever you go into the 2-3's room it is extremely organised and all the staff are positioned accordingly around the room to play with the children and engage in quality un-interrupted interactions. This has been commented about by many visitors, the admin team and other staff members. The 2-3's team, have lovely home diaries and I often see them writing these within their own lunch break periods, as they love to show off to parents all the fun their children have been having whilst at nursery. It doesn't stop there, as the diaries are displayed on the notice board and used within island time periods throughout the week. All the 2-3's children chat in small groups and re-tell stories from the weekend with the aid of these diaries (as staff really do promote the use of them with parents). Natalie's team use a variety of observation techniques that support every child's learning and development and gather observations for each others key children. This is important as the children may behave differently with different staff members, so gathering observations as a team gives you an all round view of every child's development. This also helps part time staff and staff that are not as confident in carrying out observations.

Well done the 2-3's team at Clifton Lodge Nursery, your work is appreciated and an inspiration to others.


Good Team Work - August 2012

I would like to celebrate what a wonderful nursery team we all are, and nominate everyone for employee of the month. I think you have all shown how helpful, kind and considerate you are by helping out at each others events/fairs/parents evenings etc. It's lovely to see how you now celebrate staff birthdays or achievements with staff from other settings as well as your own, and this shows how we've all grown as a staff team.

The observation, assessment and planning at each of the nursery settings has also developed immensely with you all keen to see how this may change with the new EYFS, and I have had lots of enthusiastic questions and ideas to help progress the children's learning further.

The cleanliness of the nurseries has also been commented on lately, with parents stating how clean and fresh the nurseries are looking. I think all the chefs deserve a special mention too, as they are working extremely hard making sure all the children get fresh home cooked lunches, with such a lot of children having special dietary requirements.

Well done Everyone. Keep up the hard work.


Kerry Betteridge-Rowland - July 2012

Kerry works extremely hard as part of the baby unit team at Clifton Lodge Nursery and always gives Rachael Newsham help and support to provide outstanding levels of care for the babies in the baby room. Kerry recently worked a full week to help cover staff holidays within the baby unit, which provided vital continuity of care for the babies, especially as lots of new babies had just started at the nursery. Kerry has also come into nursery on her days off to attend home visits for children that are new or are finding it hard to settle at nursery.

Kerry has a particular enthusiasm to help children with additional needs and when a little boy started which Kerry thought may need extra support, Kerry was quick to provide help, support and advice for the parents. The special thing about Kerry however, is that she always empathises and considers how a parent feels and considers how to approach the initial conversation of, I have noticed with sensitivity. Since then Kerry has worked alongside the little boys' parents and various different professionals and he has come on in leaps and bounds. Kerry has close bonds with both the little boy and his parents, and delights at each of his little success stories. It's lovely for me to see and hear feedback about how well he is doing, which Kerry regularly does.

Both at Club Day and at the Nursery Fair I noticed how hard working Kerry was, always wanting to be useful and asking is there anything she can do. Kerry stayed behind on the Thursday evening before club day to help draw and decorate artwork. After the fair Kerry lugged all the chairs in and during the torch celebrations when it was mayhem Kerry rolled her sleeves up and asked myself and Anne if we needed any help. Nothing was too much trouble for Kerry and she knew just when help was needed.

A special mention has to go to Kerry when she was dressed up as peppa pig. She engaged with all the children judging whether to be loud dancing about to the more confident of children or a little wave to a child that may be shy. Either way all the children loved her and I thought she was an amazing peppa pig.


Amanda Lea - May 2012

Amanda celebrates ten years of working for Learning Curve in August. Her enthusiasm for the job and excellent care for the children is always evident and Amanda's calm and caring nature makes the baby room a special place for all the little babies that attend. Amanda is popular with parents and many parents return with their second, third and fourth baby and ask for Amanda to look after their little ones. There isn't anything Amanda doesn't know about feeding, weaning and babies' development, and staff and parents will always come to Amanda for advice and support

Amanda's positive character is infectious and she comes into nursery with a happy, smiley face every day and will always wish everyone good morning. Amanda is very welcoming towards new staff members, and staff enjoy spending time with the babies and Amanda in the baby room.

In her own time, Amanda is still thinking about the babies and her lovely baby room, and she recently spent the weekend knitting some beautiful lavender teddies.


Charley Beardsall - March 2012

Charley has been doing an apprenticeship and has recently achieved a student award from Beneast Training for all her hard work at college. Charley started at Bluebell Lodge in August 2011 and soon become a vital member of the Lower Pre-School team. Charley has worked in all the rooms and isn't phased by any of the age ranges. You can guarantee that Charley always comes to work with a smile on her face and is full of energy to start the day. Charley is an asset to the nursery and the Lower Pre-School team, and we are proud of all Charley's hard work both in and out of college. Well done Charley


Katherine Surtees - November 2011

Kat has organised a sponsored walk in aid of cystic fibrosis. Kat did a lot of this in her own time. Kat liaised with the Cystic Fibrosis Trust Charity, as well as Blackpool Council as the walk needed a tram permit, as well as organising for everyone to wear t-shirts. Kat also organised to meet at the Solaris after the walk. It was lovely to see parents attend the walk along with family and friends. Well done Kat you did a fantastic job.


Kirsten Fellows - September 2011

Kirsten has taken on the role of Sickness Co-ordinator at Bluebell. She has been helping with the absence meetings and looking at ways in which staff absences can be reduced. Kirsten works closely with Anne and me by keeping us up to date with her findings and talking through them. Kirsten is developing more and more into her role. She keeps all the staff team informed by doing a display boards to gather ideas for reducing absences from the workplace. Kirsten has also taken the plunge and done her first solo staff meeting which is difficult even for the more experienced of us. Well done Kirsten for doing this I understand how hard this was for you to do.


Jayne Fielding - May 2011

Jayne has worked for the company since February 2008. Jayne started with us as an administrative officer and now has the responsibility of doing all the nursery accounts, book keeping, staff pay role, banking, and fees. That's on top of all the day to day administrative duties!! She does have help from her friend Anita and the nursery managers, but Jayne is a true super star and the nursery wouldn't be the same without her.

Jayne has a good relationship with the staff team and we all love Jayne's funny personality and comical stories. Jayne is very good at listening to everyone's problems and always gives out sound advice.

Well Done Jayne, you're a star.


Barbara Morris - April 2011

Babs has worked for the company since September 2006, she has worked at all the different nurseries. Babs has tried her hand at accounts and has even helped out as a nursery nurse when the staff got stuck in Dublin. Babs is a happy, cheerful personality whom is a joy to have around the nurseries. Babs has recently been trying out new recipes to bring more choice and a healthier diet for the children at Shepherd Lodge. I know some parents have even been into Babs kitchen to ask how she cooks things, as their children prefer her cooking

Babs always helps out at club day, nursery fairs and bazaars and takes on roles up and beyond the role of 'Nursery Chef'. Babs recently helped to organise and coordinate the nursery ICAN challenge, where the children took part in a record breaking heads, shoulders, knees and toes sing song. Well Done Babs, you're a star.


Toni Jackson - February 2011

Toni Jackson is a name I have heard a lot of people mention this month. Toni has supported all rooms with great enthusiasm and was recently nominated staff member of the month by the 'Clifton Lodge' staff team. Toni has worked in her own time organising events and making displays, and has really dedicated her time, knowledge and creativity to 'Clifton Lodge'. Toni has listened to any problems that staff have had and has given her help and advice freely. Toni has even helped out at 'Bluebell Lodge' too, by cooking lunches so Liz could have time off. Toni's own professional development over the past five years is a credit to herself and I am really pleased with how she is progressing. Keep up all the hard work Toni, it is very much appreciated.




Learning Curve Head Office: 502 Lytham Road, FY4 1JH. Tel: 01253 346741 or email us