Both my children went to Stargazers from the age of 6 months old. After visiting other nurseries and child minders, I knew Stargazers was ideal. It’s small enough that the children are nurtured as individuals and I was really confident that the staff knew my children inside out. This has helped because there is such a low turnover of staff. All their interests, (like dinosaurs!) were encouraged and they really bonded with the staff. The children really enjoyed putting on the shows at Christmas and the Harvest festival and all the various events throughout the year mean you get to know the other parents and it has a real community spirit.
Sarah - Harry and Joe’s mum
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After moving to Shropshire and having our second child, my husband and I were keen to find a nursery that was home from home for our son who was 9 months at the time. Having visited many nurseries in the area and leaving without that warm feeling we were looking for, a friend recommended Stargazers to us. From the minute we arrived we knew we had found the perfect nursery. Laughter, energy, love & care were and still are in abundance. To watch our son grow & learn with confidence but always with an element of fun has been fantastic. The Stargazers girls always took the time to listen, talk & understand not only to Darragh but also to us as a family. The variety of activities, events and new childcare developments Stargazers continues to introduce has contributed positively to our kids' learning not only practically but also emotionally. As Darragh has now moved on to school, our third child Cillian is happily settled at Stargazers making friends, learning, playing and above all being cared for by a wonderful, interested and dedicated team who we could not recommend highly enough.
Naomi – Darragh and Cillian’s mum
A testimony of our time with you, lovely
I have so many favourite memories of my children’s time at Stargazers: Sue with her big bottle of bubbles in the garden, French lessons from Pam, Pam’s amazing shows, Jenai’s ability to get them to eat vegetables, the toilet train, the art work, the messy play… But above them all, is a very sure and certain sense that my children were safe and loved, valued and adored. The bond that you develop with your nursery needs to be really strong as much for the mother as for the child. For the years that we were there, Stargazer’s became part of our family and like family they saw us through thick and thin.
One prize example of this was after our daughter returned to nursery after a frightening super bug, the staff phoned me at work to reassure me that she was ok; this was without prompting, just because they knew how worried I was. I could breathe and get on with my day. I remember arriving to pick our daughter up and being ignored, studiously so that play could continue; once sitting on the climbing frame outside, she informed me that she was on a tractor drive with her friends and would be back in a while. I stood back and watched little people engaged in big adventures, rocking gently back and forth with the motion of the ‘tractor’.
I remember arriving at Forest school for the first time accompanying Amelie; there were pots and pans, brushes and spades lying around the little wood. When I enquired why we needed these things, she replied that they were for playing with the mud and the nature, the brushes for painting nature with mud; it was all about the mud and the nature. Mud I happily washed off clothes and boots each week knowing how happy and confident she was there. At primary school, when her year one class went for a trip to a woods, Amelie insisted on taking the name badge she had made at Forest School with Stargazers, so ‘everyone would know who she was’.
I remember all the staff; I once remarked to Sarah how much our daughter loved her and her immediate and genuine response was ‘I love her too’. How Amelie gave them nick names and happily stayed in their arms. When I arrived and needed a hug, I had to wait. How easy it was to hand over my baby son, Ben, to them, because I knew that although he would find it hard to start with, he’d love it soon. And he did. When Ben was 18 months old we had to rapidly relocate to the North West for work and my biggest regret of the move, is how much he missed out by not being at Stargazers; we moved just as he was getting confident there. Amelie talked her first teacher through her learning journey from Stargazers when she started school; her teacher was so impressed by the variety of experiences Amelie had had there and how much she had loved it. I missed them too. Stargazers had become part of our routines, it had helped shape the way we parented our children.
It was part of the way we got through the days and the weeks; its absence was harder than I could ever have imagined. Having Stargazers in our lives meant we could work without fear or guilt, our children were safe, loved and on the best adventures of their young lives.
I miss them still, I suspect I always will.
Bec Tulloch and Angus Tulloch