I am a registered childminder with an Outstanding Inspection from Ofsted. Im based in central Brighton (Vernon Terrace) which means my home is easily accessible from most surrounding areas, and five minutes walk from Brighton train station. My Ofsted registration number is EY429682.
I live in a ground floor Victorian flat with a large living space used for childcare, with an interesting garden for the children to play in. I provide a homelike environment so children have all the comforts and security of a home as well as having other children to play and socialise with. I try to motivate and enthuse children by offering a stimulating and challenging, yet safe environment.
Working with you to develop a good two way communication flow helps me to provide the appropriate care for your child, and to ensure consistency. Children will feel a sense of belonging when they see us working together, which helps to re-enforces the childs trust in me and to feel secure.
I use a sophisticated and secure on-line system called Babys Days to record a daily diary for you to log in and see what activities, outings and experiences your child has had, any WOW moments, observations, and I upload photos to support the days events. You can also leave comments, feedback, and suggestions for me to read and use whilst planning activities.
I offer each child a close and supportive relationship and pay attention to their needs to help them thrive. I do lots of talking and eye contact and I listen to what they are trying to say, whether its verbal or non-verbal and respond accordingly. I offer warm, responsive care to help them feel confident and valued in order to help them settle and become secure members of our little team.
We play with a wide range of quality, multicultural and diverse toys, posters, educational games, puzzles & books, where children are encouraged to help themselves. I rotate toys from the childminder toy library on a monthly basis to develop an interest or following an observation, or just to try something new and exciting. The younger children explore discovery baskets and sensory sacks that consist of everyday natural objects and materials to develop sensory exploration.
To encourage imagination we have a role play/ kitchen area with kitchen equipment, wooden fruit to cut, plates, cups, knives, forks, spoons etc. We have a broom, mop and dustpan and brush, dressing up clothes, bags, phones, a pushchair and baby dolls. We also use Indian and Chinese eating equipment, African/ Indian and Chinese material and clothes for dressing up, market stalls with real fruit and vegetables, multicultural dolls, dolls house and much more. Sometimes we transform the lounge into a jungle and pretend we are animals crawling and roaring, sometimes we pretend we are ballerinas or ice skaters and dance around the room.
A favourite activity tends to be when we dance and sing songs, and listen to music from all around the world whilst playing percussion. We also sing nursery rhymes with actions/ puppets and percussion which children really enjoy, especially when they get to hold the puppet and lead the rhyme, which helps build their self-confidence. We do lots of walking, running, climbing, dancing and talk about exercise and its benefits. When not involved in activities we can relax on the sofa, or amongst cushions and blankets on the floor and read.
We read lots of fictional stories together and often use story sacks and props to bring the stories to life. Sometimes we read stories from inside a den! We also read lots of factual books with specific topics such as celebrations, seasons, people who help us or if a child has shown an interest in such as shadows or water we will select a relevant book to explore this interest further.
To explore media, materials and develop physical skills in handling tools children are offered various arts and crafts materials to mould, paint, stick, stamp, draw, write, cut and our artwork is usually part of a theme. To understand the importance of recycling we use recycled rubbish to create artwork that can be taken home to be admired by the rest of the family. We also enjoy participating in putting the recycling out in the relevant bins.
We have an artwork display board for children to proudly display their works of art, and show their parents when they come to collect them. We also have an artwork folder available for parents to view artwork to date.
We talk about healthy eating when a relevant situation arises, and do cooking or food smell/tasting activities based around healthy eating (like making hummus) or with foods from different cultures to help develop their tastes. We do lunch and snack sharing from time to time to help childrens sharing skills and to try different foods.
We practise writing letters and numbers on our individual chalk boards, I write a letter or the number and the children can attempt to copy the letters - sometimes successfully! We practice letters, numbers, our names and just enjoy making marks. There is a large chalk board too for the younger children to enjoy mark making.
We participate in activities based around nature such as when we watched and documented the Miracle of Metamorphosis and observed over a few weeks the transformation of tiny baby caterpillars in to chrysalides, and then into beautiful butterflies. We were able to observe the butterflies and feed them for a few days before releasing them in the garden which provided a wonderful opportunity to understand a little bit about nature and our world.
There are labels around the setting such as washing machine, puzzles, train set, Leggo, vegetables, door, wash your hands, bedroom etc to encourage questions "What does that say, what is this for?" and to encourage reading, recognising letters and putting words and objects together.
In the warmer months we have the back door open to encourage free flow play. The Helens Happy Home Garden has a messy play mud kitchen for mixing soil & water, digging and experimenting – we sometimes take pots and pans and cook mud soup or mud pasta for each other. We have a builders tray where we create scenes such as farm yards, ponds, seashores etc and an area with treasures we have collected from the seafront . We usually have pots growing seeds we have planted, we do digging and weeding and plant bulbs. We have a pop up castle to encourage pretend and role play, and just have fun sitting in there chatting. When we are not doing activities in the garden we put a picnic blanket down and sit and eat fruit and snacks, watch the wind blowing the windmills round and round, look up and watch the trees, the birds, the sky, the clouds – we listen and discuss the sounds and what we can see. We have a set of binoculars to spot birds in the trees, and a bug magnifier to examine insects. Whilst in the garden we like to make different sounds – we have a bottle filled with stones to shake and a water pipe to make sounds through with our mouths. We like to do mark making in the garden with big paintbrushes and water and do water painting and footprints, we also have chunky chalk to draw. We sometimes draw around each other and then draw on various parts of the body, and clothes. We often enjoy water play and water pouring in the paddling pool.
We spend time outside each day whether its in the garden or at one of ten parks around Brighton and Hove that we regularly go to, or sometimes we go for a walk along the seafront and see what treasures we can find. On our journeys we discuss keeping safe, and we try to learn as much about the world as we can and embrace the local community. We often take an activity with us such as a ball, Frisbee or hacky sacks to practice throwing, catching and counting or small world animals or giant insects to bury and find in the sand.
Each week we attend childminder groups at the local childrens centres where our little team can mix with other children, participate in seasonal and celebration themed activities and enjoy child-led play with all sorts of toys and activities. We also go to mother and toddler groups, to the toy library to play, to the Jubilee library to play and choose new books, to farms, animal sancturys, museums, paddling pools, and soft play.
We usually gather together in the afternoon and look at the photos we have taken during the day and talk about what we are doing in the photos. I find it helps the children to feel part of a team, as well as the important individual that they are!
In 2008 I looked after a friends child on a regular basis, then opened Helens Happy Home in 2011. My daughter Ionie Mae was born in May 2011, she thrives whilst around other children and welcomes them to our happy home.
I have undergone the following training to date, and continue to attend regular courses to keep my knowledge & skills fresh to care for your child:
Paediatric First Aid Certificate
Promoting Positive Behaviour in the EYFS (0-3)
Exploring Outdoor Provision for Babies in their First Year (0-1)
Sustained Shared Thinking with children in the EYFS (0-3)
Child Development (0-5)
Creative Storytelling (0-3)
Makaton for Professionals
Its Cool to be Creative
Discovery Boxes, Treasure Baskets and Heuristic Play (0-3)
Babies’ Brains are Amazing! (0-3)
Observation, Assessment and Planning (0-5)
Running, Developing & Marketing a Childminding Business
Introduction to Childcare Practice – (Pass) part of CACHE Level 3 Diploma in Home-based Childcare
Next steps from observation (ages 0-5)
Deserving the best, meeting the needs of two and early three year olds (ages 0-3)
All training is approved by the local authority and follows guidelines set out in the Ofsted Early Years Foundation Stage.
I have availability for full days for your child from August 2017, please get in contact for further details.
|Last Updated: 08/01/2020|
- Childminding from £6.00 per hour
Care Per Child is £5.50 per hour.
Breakfast - £1.00
Lunch - to be supplied by parents
Dinner time meal - £2.00 if required
All meals I provide are healthy, balanced & nutritious and are all home-made, I provide a healthy dessert after the evening meal.
My Local Schools
This childminder has not yet informed us whether or not they provide any drop off or pick up services at local schools.
Below are the latest reviews for Helen. Please note that reviews represent the subjective opinions of other Childcare.co.uk users and not of Childcare.co.uk. Parents must carry out their own checks and references on childcare providers to ensure that they are completely happy before enaging in the use of their services.
I strongly recommend Helen's Happy Home.
My daughter has been going for the past 18 months. She loves going to Helen's and enjoys playing with Helen's daughter and the other children.
The food Helen provides is excellent healthy and reasonably priced, the space, garden and house are great for kids and Helen is proactive in her communication with parents.
My daughter also attends a nursery 2 days per week, but I feel much more comfortable leaving my daughter with Helen, the feedback I receive is much better and I think Emily gets more 1:1 attention than at the nursery.
Helen takes the kids out most days, to play groups, to the park and to farms, etc and always has a range of new toys and ideas for games.
I can't recommend Helen's Happy Home strongly enough.
Response by Helen on 17/05/2013:
Oh thank you Alice - that's a lovely review x
Helen is an amazing child-minder. Our son, Finley, has been extremely happy in her care...I think it'd be impossible to find anyone better.
Response by Helen on 17/05/2013:
That's a lovely review - thank you x
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