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Pre-School, After-School Club and Breakfast Club are now open. Download our complete price list. Read our Pre-School Parent Contract.


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Here is our latest news. Click on a headline to expand or collapse the story. Please subscribe to our Facebook Page to  stay up to date on what is happening at Fiveways Playcentre. If you have any news you’d like to share, please email us at

Friday 27th May and Friday 22nd July 2022.

Hello everyone, we hope you had a good Easter holiday. We love to hear what you have been doing during the holidays and at the weekends, have you been away, out for day trips, to the beach or playground, have you met up with friends and relatives? You can share your experiences in an observation on Tapestry, or in the comments box below, or you can print out the attached sheet and bring it in over the next few weeks. It's really nice for the children to share their experiences at 'group time' and hear what their friends have been doing too.

Here's a few updates and dates to put in your diary.

This term:

At Fiveways we are exploring lifecycles, eggs and growing. We have been looking at the creatures that lay eggs, insects, birds, reptiles and dinosaurs! We have been planting seeds and talking about what they need to grow and thinking about what we need to grow big and strong too.

We will be celebrating the Queen's jubilee with some 'garden tea parties', with sandwiches and cake, during our last week of term (23rd to 26th of May). We will keep you posted with the days and will make sure every child can a attend a party if they want to.

After the half term break, we will be talking about 'Moving on' generally and very subtly! With the Bluebell children, we will focus on the similarities with preschool and school (similar toys and activities, role play areas, outside play areas, carpet time, own peg for bag etc.) The Bluebell children will be practicing some of the skills that will help them in their transition to school. We will be posting some activity ideas you can practice at home too.

As well as all this we will be having lots of Summer fun! talking about places we have visited in Brighton, and other places around the UK and around the world!, We will be playing different activities and games on the field, football, tennis, racing, obstacle courses, parachute games and more!

Tapestry: This year we started a new system for monitoring each child's development, as some of you may know. We will be reviewing this system and would appreciate your comments and feedback, how is it from a parent's perspective? Don't forget you can access ideas for things to try at home with your child on the Activity Tab on your child's Tapestry account.

Lunch time and end of day return: As you may now be aware, we changed our collection routine after lunch and at the end of the day.

Tulip children arriving or going home at 12.15 will be collected from the main front door.

Bluebell children arriving or going home at 12.15 will be collected from the Bluebell door as before.

At 3.30/3.45 all children will be collected from the first door (to Tulip room) past the tall wooden gate.

Important dates:

Parent's evening: We will be having telephone Parent's 'evenings' appointments for the Tulip parents, during the days of the 16th, 17th and 18th of May. Time slots can be booked from next week.

The Bluebell children's parent's evening will be on the 30th of June. This will be 'face to face' as we will be asking parents to read and sign their child school transfer document. The transfer document will give your child's new teacher a brief summary of their strengths and interests in the different areas of learning and will include any information that will help your child settle in school. This is just part of our process for ensuring a smooth transition to the reception school year.

Inset day: Preschool will be closed for an inset day on Friday 27th of May

Half term: Monday 30th of May to Friday 3rd of June.

Summer fayre Saturday 25th of June: We are excited to announce we will be hosting our popular summer fayre again this year! after a 2 year absence. The fayre is a really popular day and we will rely on lots of volunteers to help it run smoothly. Please let us know if you would be able to help in any way. As you know, Fiveways is a charity and we rely on our fundraising activities to provide the equipment and resources we need for our wonderful setting.

End of term photographer: Please note the change in date.

Our end of year photograph will be on Thursday 7th of July. If you child does not usually attend on Wednesday but you would like them to be in the photograph, please arrive at 9.50am on the day.

fireworks display

Thank you for a spectacular night. 

Welcome back everyone!

We hope you had a good summer and are looking forward to the new term at Fiveways. For all our parents and carers, especially those of new children, we understand this is a big step and there’s lots to remember, so please do let us know if you have any questions or queries.

All our preschool children have a Tapestry online learning journal. Your child’s keyperson will update their personal profile regularly, adding photos and observations throughout the year. This system will ensure we really focus on the specific needs and interests of each child, although you may find you receive fewer posts than you did previously. Parents and Carers can add photos and comments to their child’s profile too. We also use Tapestry to post memos and share information, so please do log in when you can. Let us know if you have any problems accessing your child’s account and please talk to any of the team if you have any questions.

A few reminders
Please can you label your child’s clothing, lunch boxes, bottles, and shoes. It makes it so much easier to match missing items to their owners!

If someone different is collecting your child, please let the team know, the adult collecting must have your child’s password.

We are asking our parents and carers to wear face coverings when dropping off and collecting their child, thank you.

We are nut and seed free, this includes foods which contain nuts and seeds, pesto, and hummus for example.

If your child is still in nappies, please remember to bring in extras, we are running out of spare ones!

To support the preschoolers in developing their self-care skills, we are helping them find and change into their indoor shoes or slippers when they arrive. Please can you provide some simple fastening shoes for inside (slip-on or Velcro fastening) and outside play (wellies are great!).

Topics this term
Our topic this half term is ‘All about me!’ It would be lovely if you could bring in photos you have of important people in your child’s life. And please continue to tell us what you enjoyed this summer break, people or places you visited, activities you enjoyed, trips to the park for example. You can add your comments and photos to your child's Tapestry account.

Following on from ‘All about me’ we will be looking ‘Fiveways values’, the things that are important to us, how we play, being kind to each other and caring for our environment.

Important dates
Harvest singing. Following on from the success of last year’s virtual Harvest festival and Christmas singing, we will again be recording this year’s harvest festival celebrations. The video will be uploaded to Tapestry for you to download and watch together as often as you like. The dates of the singing will be the morning of Tuesday October 19th for the Bluebell group, Wednesday 20th for the Tulip and Thursday 21st for Buttercup group. (If your child does not attend on those days, they will be able to come in for the singing). Children will be able to dress up as farmyard animals, vegetables, farmers, scarecrows if they like, but please do not spend lots of time or money on costumes as we will be making props for shows too. Unfortunately, due to our local authority advice, we are continuing not to have parents and carers in the building, so we will not be able to invite you to the ‘live’ performances.

Half term. The playcentre will be closed for our half term break on Monday 25th October to Friday 29th of October, in line with the school half term holiday.

We don’t stop playing because we grow old, we grow old because we stop playing
George Bernard Shaw

Hello 5Ways Parents and Carers
As you may be aware, there are seismic changes in management staff at 5Ways and by way of hopefully easing any anxiety you may have with the changes, I would like to take this opportunity to introduce myself to you all.
My name is Chris Low and I will be sharing the management of 5Ways with Lucy, who will continue to supervise the Early Years children, whilst I will shoulder the responsibilities of the After School Club.

I am a play-worker and have worked in after school and holiday provision for 20 years, becoming actively involved with school and neighbourhood communities at many Brighton and Hove schools (and briefly one in Eastbourne), with the majority of my time being shared between Moulsecoomb and most recently, (the past eleven years), Fairlight Primary School, where I have developed trusted relationships with the children, Parent/Carers and the school PTA and staff, proudly receiving two consecutive Ofsted Outstanding Inspection Grades, (Feb 2015, March 2019).

Personally I am a Brightonian, with two adult children, both boys, (37 and 38) and a 14 year old Grandson. (You are welcome to remark that I don’t look old enough). I have a passion for illustration, animation and comic books, with an, as yet, unfulfilled urge to create a graphic novel or a children’s book. When not reading comics or watching cartoons I play/practice the guitar and have recently been teaching myself book binding, with twenty nine books made and eighteen in different stages of development at the present moment.

I’m excited to meet the children and Parents and to continue the holistic and caring childcare you expect from 5Ways and excited to develop the play opportunities, to ensure that your children have the best, supportive and enjoyable time at After School Club, creating memories and friends, exploring their play interests and developing their physical and social skills, in a nurturing , safe and fun environment.

It is easier to build strong children, than repair broken men
Frederick Douglass

Welcome back for the last half term of an extraordinary year!

On the 18th June we have JP Photographic in from 9.30 taking photos of the children in the garden and a whole group photo will be taken at about 10 am. If its not your normal day but you would like your child to attend, that’s great just email the office at Parents will be asked to socially distance on the field and in the front garden while the photos are being taken.

The After School Club end of year survey is now out, parents have been emailed a copy and the children have been given a paper copy. This is a great way for us to adjust to the needs of our children and families so if you could take a few moments to have your say we would be grateful.

To improve our pickup arrangements for both Pre School and After School Club we are asking families to email a photo of the adult that will normally be picking up. In the subject header could you write the child’s name followed by the adult name.

We have been asked about parties in our building so for the moment this is not going to change.

As some of you are aware Pat and I will be taking early retirement at the end of this term.

The new team is

David Lee - Finance Manager

Lucy Reading – Centre Manager

Chris Low – Deputy Manager and After School Manager

Tracy Willard – Office Administrator

Heidi and Sam will both be Team Leaders from September as well.

Chris is joining the team from Fairlight After School club where he’s had two Outstanding Ofsted Reports, we are looking forward to working with such an experienced practitioner.

On a personal note:

Pat and I started this Management duo 3 years ago now as friends and that is how we are leaving, as friends but what a challenge the last year’s been not just for us but everyone. We can all share a tale or two over this last year. 


A note from Pat:
My Fiveways story began in 1988 when I walked through the door of that wonderful old building to attend Stay and Play, then called parent and toddler, with my oldest son Gary. Both him and David went to playgroup at Fiveways and in 1991 I was offered a job as a playgroup assistant.

Well, who knew what a journey that would start!! I had the pleasure to learn so much from Veronica that gave me the confidence to take on the managers post when Gaynor decided to move on.

I would not have even considered this without Grace agreeing to be my co- manager and always being there with her never-ending support and friendship.

Fiveways is a unique, welcoming place, made so by the most amazing staff team. Fiveways staff are a unique team who create such a wonderful, fun learning environment for the children, who give so many unpaid hours at Fundraising events to ensure that the place thrives and so that new ideas can become reality. I thank them all so, so much for their support over the years, and especially over the last year with all that COVID has thrown at us.

Over the years so many different families have come through Fiveways doors, many returning a second or third time as new family additions came along. The support and friendship over the years from Fiveways families is another part of what makes Fiveways great. You have baked cakes, joined committees, gardened, manned stalls and donated so many toys, books, raffle prizes and money and am sure this support will continue.

Grace and I have decided that it is now time to pass this gem over to a new team and we are retiring at the end of term.

I am immensely proud to have been part of Fiveways and I am sure that it will continue to thrive and still be the unique, wonderful, happy place under Lucy and her team.

The Fiveways Family has been a huge part of my family’s life and will always continue to be so.

A note from Grace: 
My 5ways journey started officially 9 years ago but I was in the really privileged position of being the NVQ Childcare assessor for 5ways at the local college long before I started to work here. For me, the team have always been supportive and caring in equal measures and then to work in such an amazing setting adds to the beauty of the role but like the rest of the world Covid has changed everything in no uncertain terms, it feels like the time is right to step away and let 5ways carry on its journey with a new team. As Pat has said the last three years have been worth all the stress because it’s been shared with a good friend. I am taking so many wonderful memories with me from After School Club events, Fireworks night, the Open House events as well as a range of parties.

I wish you all a wonderful summer and thank you for your support to myself and 5ways. 

Our good friend, Long Tall Silly, who has done many music sessions with the children, is featured in the new local magazine The Hovarian

We are running a holiday playscheme on Tuesday 1st June and Wednesday 2nd June 2021.
This is open to all our pre-school and after school club children, as well as their older brothers and sisters.
Please bring a packed lunch or buy one of our packed lunches for £3.20 each.
• Morning 9am–1pm £16
• Afternoon 1pm–5pm £16
• All day 9–5pm £32
All sessions to be paid for in advance.
Please contact on or call the office on 01273 500257.

Fiveways is a great place for children’s celebrations. We are now re-opening for party hire. With full use of our indoor and outdoor facilities, with some restrictions, and use of the kitchen and kitchen equipment. 

Smaller party:
• 11:30–3:30
• Fridge, kettle, no cooking
• lobby
• Children’s Centre
• all outside
• 20 children

Larger party
• 11:30–3:30
• Fridge, kettle, cooking allowed
• 2 main rooms
• all the outside
• kitchen oven

Smaller party:
• £100 (£30 deposit returned)

Larger party:
• £150 (£30 deposit returned)

Our family has recently grown with the addition of three adult foxes and their ten cubs. They have made a comfy home behind our sheds and wait patiently for the children to go home before coming out to play. We would like to reassure you that advice from the RSPCA has been taken; we have cordoned off the shed and have been advised that foxes do not attack unless under threat. We, of course, maintain our close scrutiny of the children, particularly in that area and have had many discussions with the children over sharing our space.

Unfortunately pick up times seem to have lengthened. Please collect promptly by 3.45pm. We will be charging people who arrive late.

Also, for the security of children, please remember to close the two metal gates.

We have arranged the photographer to come in and take our leavers’ photo. Please put the date in your diary, any child not here that day is, of course, welcome to come and join us.

May 3rd is a  Bank Holiday. May 28th until June 7th is half-term.

Please don’t forget to let us know what school your child is going to or what sessions you would like for September. Thank you.

Please keep checking in with your child’s Tapestry account, you can share your ideas, experiences and  queries with us, and each other. Let us know if you need any help with logging in.

Brighton, where we live 19th - 30th April.

Lifecycles and growing 4th -14th May.

Science and our senses 17th - 28th May

We really appreciate your input with any of our topics, so please let us know if you have any ideas/ skills/experiences you would like to share with us.

In September many of our children will be moving on to school. It is an exciting but also quiet daunting time for children and parents! After half term we will be focussing on activities to support this transition, practically, and emotionally. Schools will also be contacting Parents and Carers to arrange virtual meetings to help ensure a smooth move from preschool to school. We will be posting activities on Tapestry that you might want to do together at home too. As always, please talk to your child’s keyperson or any of us if you have any ideas, thoughts, or concerns.

But, as well as this, we are looking forward to spending many happy, sunny hours playing in our lovely outside space.

easter square

We have a Playscheme running from Monday 12th April until Friday 16th April this year, which is very exciting as this is the first one in over a year. The theme is Spring.

Come and explore our great indoor and outdoor facilities. A week to run, play and have fun and games with our dedicated team!

8am–9am Breakfast club £5. Then 9am–5pm £32.
Bring a packed lunch or pay £3.20 for a cooked lunch prepared by us.

To book, please fill out this form.

Please email us at for more details.

Now the Spring term has finished completely we would like to remind everyone that fees for that term should have been paid in full by now. Thanks!

Please remember to label your children’s clothing with their name as it helps to ensure we know what item belongs to whom.

easter square

We would like to put out the plea for a covered sandpit.... if anyone has one they don’t need, please let us know.......

easter square

Does anyone have a lawn drop spreader they don’t need? We think this would be a massive hit in the garden next term, if we can get one!

easter square

It’s simply unmissable! We hope you like it.

A quick reminder that we break up at the end of Thursday 1st April and that we are back on Monday 19th April for the Summer Term.

(Over the two weeks’ holiday, we have an Easter Playscheme in the second week).

Welcome back everyone once again!

Thank you for working with us while we devise the safest way, with adequate social distancing, to get everyone in and out of the building. As some of you have seen this can be tricky especially when it’s raining and the After School Children are coming down as well.

Bluebell children are dropped off and collected at the first door around the back via the tall wooden gate and then you loop back on the black steppingstones. Buttercup children are dropped off and picked up at their door and then you need to loop back around the way you came in.

After School Children enter via the field gate with the staff. Parents of After School Children are collected via the front door if attending Balfour and for Downs via the tall wooden gate at the first door opposite the 2 sheds and again to loop back via the steppingstones.

Please try and remember to only go up the path or come down it if it is totally free as we really can’t socially distance in this area. Your cooperation and support are appreciated. Thank you.

As the weather is going to turn soon, we will be picking up on the gardening theme, so if anyone is overrun with flowerpots, we would love to take them off your hands. Please leave them on the bench by the front door. Thank you.

We really appreciate all these little acts of kindness as they help to keep us afloat!

Grace, Ben and the rest of the after school club team are preparing for opening again from Monday 8 March. Don't forget to email us to confirm your sessions required. Thanks!

Lucy and her team are keen to welcome all the Pre-School children back from the 8 March if they have not returned already. See you then!

Grace and Ben are looking forward to welcoming children from Downs Infants and Junior school to the Fiveways Breakfast Club. Please email on to book your place.

Can we remind you that February half term is from Monday 15th February?

We are back on Monday 22nd February 2021.

Have a great half term and keep safe.

At Fiveways, we are excited to hear what the Prime Minister is saying about the roadmap out of lockdown. We will keep you posted about what this means regarding what we are allowed to and by when as soon as possible.

In other good news, we are pleased that asymptomatic home testing kits will be made available to private, voluntary and independent (PVI) nurseries and pre-schools in England from Monday 22nd March. The kits are to be used by staff twice a week at home.

As you know we are doing our best to support everyone, with priority being given to vulnerable children or those of key workers. Unfortunately, the current advice is to refrain from restarting our Breakfast Club and After School provision, but we will endeavour to do so as soon as it is deemed feasible.

As a charity we are led by a Committee who are all volunteers. Some current members are due to leave so we need to encourage some of you to sign up! You don’t need any skill in particular, but enthusiasm and ideas are always welcome. If you think you would enjoy working within a warm group to support 5Ways, please contact us and we will pass your details on for an informal chat with a Committee member. They usually meet here about once a month.

Hattie and Pauline joined us last term and will be working in Afterschools and Bluebells once we are properly up and running again.

Also new for this term is our email address, hopefully you all received the email with this change before the end of the year. The new address is and the phone numbers remain the same 01273 500257 or the mobile is 07865348751.

We intend to spend even more time outside this year; the children loved planting up the bulbs into the tubs that are now around the building so it would be lovely to carry on with this theme. If anyone is cutting back or taking cuttings, such as raspberry bushes or any other plants, we would appreciate anything you can spare. Please save, if possible, until we all return. Thank you.

There are a lot of activity ideas on Tapestry for Playgroup children. The topic for this term is “Winter” and we will then move onto “Houses and Homes”. If there are any specific activities your child enjoys or you think would enjoy, please let us know.

Well, what a start to 2021! We want to thank everyone for the lovely gifts and thoughtful words of support you shared with us in the days leading up to Christmas. We hope that you are all well and staying safe in this unsettling and difficult climate. These times are difficult for all of us. Please trust that we will always do our best to provide a safe and stimulating setting for as many of you as we can. If you feel we can support you in any way please contact us. Please take care of yourselves and each other.
Best wishes
Pat, Grace and the Staff Team.

Hello everyone. We hope you're all well. Don't forget to check your child's Tapestry account.
We're posting lots of activities you might like to try at home and you can upload photos of what you've been doing too, if you like. It'd be great to hear from you.
Stay safe x.

Dear Parents/Carers
As promised in our email sent on Sunday the Trustees and Management have been reviewing the ongoing lockdown situation.
Thank you for your support and bearing with us whilst we have been sorting out staffing and the ability to safely reopen. In light of our ongoing conversation with Brighton and Hove Council and their decision to close council run nurseries to all but the children of critical workers and vulnerable children, we are contacting you to assess the need for places here at Fiveways.
Priority will be given to the above children first but, please contact us urgently if you would also like to take up a place, along with the days and times you would require so that we may decide if its practical and safe for us to run.
The sooner replies are received the sooner we can decide if we will be reopening from Monday 11th January.
Once again, many thanks for your unfailing support to us in these exceedingly difficult times.
Pat and Grace
Fiveways Trustees

To all our Parents/ Carers,
The Fiveways Trustees have today made the difficult decision not to open Fiveways Playcentre next week, on 4th–8th January.
The Committee will then review the situation on Friday 8th January.
The guidance from Brighton and Hove Council for schools to remain closed for the time being along with the speed at which the virus is spreading in Brighton and Hove has guided our decision.
The safety of our staff and families is uppermost in our minds.
Please contact us if you have any worries, questions, or concerns. Either email or Grace and I will be picking up phone messages.
New email address
Please all stay safe and well and we hope to see you all very soon
Pat and Grace
Fiveways Trustees


Our ethos

Fiveways Playcentre is a play-based community of children, parents and educators. We believe that children flourish best:

How we will achieve this:
• We gather information regarding a child’s care needs, such as dietary requirements and preferences through our Registration Form
• Each child is assigned a key person who ensures every child’s learning and care is tailored to meet their individual needs
• We introduce an All About Me topic/theme early on in every academic year to learn more about the children
• We have a robust Safeguarding Policy and frequent safeguarding training throughout the year
• We promote oral health, healthy lifestyles and physical activity throughout the year and within topics and themes.

What effect we want:
• Children feel safe and secure, developing attachment to their keyperson and, if needed, use this ‘secure base’ to explore and investigate their environment.
• Staff attend to children’s personal needs
• Staff deal with children’s care arrangements, including intimate care, with a high level of privacy afforded to children
• Children are supported to recognising and responding to their own physical needs
• There are effective supervision arrangements when children are undertaking personal hygiene tasks.

How we will achieve this:
• We establish and maintain a daily routine where there are many opportunities for children to interact with others, such as during play time, adult-led activities, snack and lunch times, and carpet time
• We promote Golden Rules to guide positive behaviour and praise kind behaviour when we see it in action
• Children are taught to use a sand-timer to support taking turns
• We encourage good manners during meal times including ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ during snack time
• We provide extra support for those who need it.

What effect we want:
• Children are usually respectful towards their peers and adults
• Children understand the impact of their words and actions on others
• Staff behave as excellent role models for children
• Staff will model language well
• When there are dispute between children, staff will try to support children to problem-solve.

How we will achieve this:
• Our curriculum is co-constructed by adults and children during the year, based on children’s interests while also weaving in skills, interests, topics, themes, experiences and ideas that help broaden children’s perspective of what they enjoy and can be a part of
• We offer a range of open-ended resources for children to explore and use, indoors and outdoors, allowing them to find their own purpose and motivation
• We change our Continuous Provision and/or adapt our Enhanced Provision, depending upon our knowledge of children’s interests
• At group time, we ask children what they enjoy at home and at nursery
• At group time, we explore a range of different emotions and feelings and discuss coping strategies for when feeling sad, to support self-regulation.

What effect we want:
• Children are mostly happy
• Children have ample choice of what to play, with whom and where
• Staff will support independence and confidence
• Children feel free to decline participation in play
• Artwork including cards for Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Easter and Christmas show a wide variety in output that reflect children’s own preferences and ideas.

How we will achieve this:
Observation: Each child will have an ongoing observation called Personal Profile. In the child’s first half-term, their keyperson will answer three questions about the child in relation to each of the three Prime Areas (nine questions in total). This forms the child’s Starting Point. In the next half term, three further questions for each of the Specific Areas will be added (twelve new questions in total). The keyperson is then required to keep this entire Personal Profile (of 21 questions and answers) updated throughout the child’s time at the setting.
Understanding: As children learn and develop, key persons will be editing the questions and answers as and when needed, based on what is relevant in the child’s world. This requires a holistic understanding of the child by the keyperson, as well of child development in general.
Assessment: Every term, the keyperson is required to judge which area or aspect is the child’s Strongest Area and which one is the child’s Most Challenging Area. This will be sent as a Reflection on Tapestry each term. (In addition, each key child will need a Two Year Check completed between their second and third birthday. This will include a decision over whether the child might have special educational needs. If they do, additional systems of tracking are likely to be appropriate).
Long Term Plan:
- Fulfilment of the EYFS
- Fulfilment of the Fiveways ethos
Medium Term Plan:
- A four weekly environment plan for Buttercups and Outdoors and a two week plan for Bluebells.
- Careful and logical sequencing of set of topics / themes / celebrations / themes / skills that we wish to introduce and incorporate. We support learning by building on children’s existing knowledge and the skills they bring with them to the setting. It is about understanding the steps needed to develop and teach skills that are individual to each child.
Short Term Plan:
- Enhanced Provision depending upon the theme or topic we wish to explore.
- Spontaneous provocations. An adult introduces an idea on the spur of the moment, as an educated guess that it will be of interest. Children are free to accept or decline this ‘play cue.’
- In The Moment Planning in response to teachable moments within children’s interests and needs in the here and now.
- Personalised Plans for each child to support them in their Most Challenging Area and their Strongest Area. These do not define a child’s next step, but they are an adult’s ‘next steps’ in response to the child.
• Teaching:
We will be using approaches from Ofsted definition of Teaching in Early Years: Communicating and modelling language, showing, explaining, demonstrating, exploring ideas, encouraging, questioning, recalling, providing a narrative for what the children are doing, facilitating, setting challenges.
We will identify the gap between what a child can do by themselves and what they can do with adult support (Vygotsky’s Zone of Proximal Development) and ‘scaffold’ those skills.
We will respond to characteristics of effective learning by praising and acknowledging participation (use of ‘hands’), effort or love of an activity (‘heart’), reflection and developing and changing strategies (‘head’). We will also consider:
If a child is watching from the sidelines, how do I support the child to get involves?
If a child is giving up, how do I support the child to be resilient?
If a child is getting stuck, how do I support the child to think about their thinking?
• Learning:
Children will learn through play, and can also use play to consolidate what they already know.
They will also learn from conversation, instructions, structured adult led activities, and getting answers to their questions.
From Piaget’s Theory of Cognitive Development, children modify or change new information to fit what they already know (assimilation). Accommodation is when they restructure what they already know so new information can fit in better.

What effect we want:
• Staff enable children to explore and solve problems
• Staff encourage children to speculate and test ideas through trial and error.
• Staff read aloud and tell stories to children, and encourage children to sing songs, nursery rhymes and take part in musical games
• The children bring participation, motivation and thinking to what they are doing, as they learn and consolidate their learning.
• Staff are able to show how well they know their key children, their likes and areas where they show less interest, and are able to articulate and justify what they are doing for each individual child, and say how a child has developed from their starting point with us.

How we will achieve this:
• We have radically revamped our recording system to eliminate excessive paperwork, in order to encourage more time for high quality interactions between children and adults
• We support staff to take part in training such as in Sustained Shared Thinking, and In The Moment Planning
• We encourage staff to take part in Noodle Now e-learning each month
• We recruit staff from a wide range of backgrounds
• We hold annual appraisals for staff to help support their professional development

What effect we want:
• Staff are engaging in dialogue with children
• Staff are watching, listening and responding to children
• Staff encourage children to express their thoughts and use new words
• Staff are provided with the communication tools they need to enhance their practice in supporting children’s play and learning
• Staff promote equality and diversity, challenging harmful discrimination when this is necessary

The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) is a curriculum framework that aims to give children aged 0-5 the “best possible start in life.” As a curriculum framework, it sets the parameters for the curriculum we offer nursery children at Fiveways, including the three Prime Areas of learning and development and four Specific Areas.

Our aim is to deliver the Early Years Foundation Stage via our own curriculum, co-constructed by adults and children, which fulfils on all aspects of the Fiveways ethos above.

By providing such an ambitious and broad curriculum, we aim to make these an integral part of every day practice:

• Acknowledging and supporting the broadening and growth of children’s wealth of experience (their ‘cultural capital’)
• Promoting pro-social values such as democracy, rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance
• Supporting children to have a solid foundation to achieve their Early Learning Goals at the end of their Reception year.

Our values

Fiveways Values

F - Fun, friendly place to be
I - Inclusve, Inviting Playcentre
V - Valuing every child and parent carer
E - Exciting Environment for Everyone 
W - Warm and Welcoming
A - Attentive and Approachable staff team
Y - Your views always matter
S - Safe, Supportive and Stimulating

Our policies

Fiveways is a charity run playcentre surrounded by a green oasis. We offer breakfast club, preschool, afterschool care and some sessions during the holidays.

Fiveways Playcentre, like everyone else in the county, has a responsibility to respond to and change procedures if necessary, following the latest guidance given by the Government. We have a duty of care to our children, families, our staff team, and any visitors to our grounds. We need to ensure we have systems in place to keep everyone as safe as practicable bearing in mind that we are a Playcentre. It is crucial that everyone feels safe and the children are able to relax and play.

We are assisted by Brighton and Hove Council, Early Years and Out of School Care Team as well as The Early Years Alliance and The Out of School Alliance both of which are national organisations supporting us in managing a Covid secure environment.

Guidance on how to stay safe during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is updated regularly. For the latest Government guidance:

• in England, see coronavirus advice on

Our Covid 19 Risk Assessment will be amended and updated as the guidance from the Government is issued.

Cleaning and hygiene, PPE, fit for work and testing, dealing with a sick child, social distancing in the workplace for staff and managing staff stress are covered in the risk assessment.

More information can be found on our website at:


or call us on 01273 500257 / 07865348751

It is obviously in the interests of everyone to adhere to the following guidelines at all times to ensure this setting can operate as safely as possible.

Please respect each other and be aware of distance.

We appreciate that this new routine will take some getting used to so please be patient with one another, and with us. Thank you.

If anyone deliberately persists in behaviour that could endanger another, we will take serious action which could lead to the termination of your child’s place.

Our role within the environment and community

Children’s well being, not profit, continues to be at the heart of Fiveways, and is the reason for its success. Our aim to “create a happy, relaxed atmosphere where children, parents and staff all value, respect and care for each other” includes our environment. We encourage children and parents to learn how to ‘tread lightly’ on our planet so the planet can continue to support us and our children in the future.

• Please walk or cycle to the play centre
• Please encourage your children to recycle where possible
• Please help us to look after the outside space and the plants, insects and animals that share it with us.
• We are composting our food waste, if you live in a flat and want to join in – please speak to staff

We know having children under 5 can be stressful (as well as a lot of fun) and we aim to provide a welcoming atmosphere and help build informal community networks. Helping each other out and getting to know your neighbours is important. Friendships developed at Fiveways often continue through out school and beyond for parents and children. Community events such as the summer fair, fireworks night etc… are a good opportunity to get to know people and give our children and ourselves a sense of place in our community, as well as raising funds for Fiveways.

Our opportunities for you

To continue to offer excellent play opportunities for your children and to keep fees low we ask you to help out in a way that suits you and fits in with the demands of the rest of your life. This can be anything from 4 hours / year upwards. Below are some suggestions of different ways of helping out. Please indicate how you will help when you register your child. You are always welcome to offer extra support during the year, it can be a great way of meeting other parents and being part of our local community.

Management Committee
This meets 6 times/year in the evening for about 2 hours to support Lucy, Tracy and Debbie in managing the staff team and the day to day running of the playgroup. Fiveways can pay for a babysitter or sometimes parents take it in turns to come to meetings. Enthusiasm is as valuable as particular skills. Fiveways needs a parent led management committee to continue as a charity and not for profit social enterprise.

Due to Covid-19 these meetings are held with social distancing or via zoom

Fund-raising group
Meets as needed to organise events, such as the Valentine’s Ball, Summer Fair, Barn Dance, Quiz nights, Jumble Sales, Firework night and the Xmas bazar. Meeting times vary to suit those involved – day times, evenings, at each others houses, in the pub, in the building. Some people help with their favourite event others help all year round. The more people involved the easier it is. Extra help is always needed on the day of events.

Help in kind
You may have a trade, practical skill or special interest you can offer. For example: gardening, making, baking, bicycle repair, wildlife, plumbing, decorating…
Its always helpful to have a solicitor, accountant, press office, policy adviser etc… for help and advice.
You may be able to print colour posters at your workplace or access charitable trust funds, ask for sponsorship of an event or offer a prize for the raffle.
We also hold tidy up days when we need a good sort out.

Volunteering at the Playcentre
We offer work experience for thos thinking about starting a career in childcare and those wanting to be more involved with their children’s education. Speak to Lucy, Tracy and Debbie if you are interested.

Our history

Fiveways is an important part of our local community and we are happy to be continuing partnerships with local schools and Council services that benefit all our children. 

Fiveways Playcentre is a registered charity that has been around for over 55 years.

It began its life in a church hall in 1965, when a group of mothers wanted somewhere for their children to play. The playgroup obtained permission to use ‘Downs School field’ initially for an hour a day. In time this led to a pre-fabricated hut being built by parents on site. The building served the playgroup for the next 30 years but eventually needed replacing.

Fiveways was re-housed in the brand new building opened in 2010. This came as a result of extensive lobbying, fundraising from parents, and with the generous support of Sure Start and the Council Early Years team. This established a new partnership with Sure Start Children’s services that run alongside the playgroup, although Fiveways Playcentre remains independent. The field continues to be owned by Downs School and is under license for the playgroup to use.



Autumn 2021

Thu 2 Sep – Fri 17 Dec

1st half: Thursday 2 September to Friday 22 October

Half term is from Monday 25 October to Friday 29 October

2nd half: Monday 1 November to Friday 17 December

Spring 2022

Tues 4 Jan – Fri 8 Apr

1st half: Tuesday 4 January to Friday 11 February.

Half term is from Monday 14 February to Friday 18 February

Inset Day: Monday 21 February. 

2nd half: Tuesday 22 February to Friday 8 April.

Easter holiday is from Monday 11 April to Friday 22 April.

Summer 2022

Mon 25 Apr – Fri 22 Jul

1st half: Monday 25 April to Friday 27 May.

Half term is from Monday 30 May to Wednesday 1 June.  Thursday 2 and Friday 3  June are bank holidays.

Inset Day: Friday 27th May.

2nd half: Monday 6 June to Friday 22 July.

Inset Day: Friday 22nd July.



For childen aged 2–11



For children aged 2–11

Breakfast Club


For childen aged 2–11

After School Club


For childen aged 2–11

Holiday Playscheme


For children aged 0–3

Stay and Play


For all ages!

Fundraising events

Fiveways playcentre is a non profit charity which is run by the community for the community. We have fundraising events throughout the year, in the past we have held firework nights, Christmas fairs, open/craft mornings, summer fairs. Other events include discos for the children, breakfast with Santa and jumble sales.

Do you have any great ideas to help with our fundraising? Would like to be involved with events or be a member of our committee? Please do not hesitate to contact us.


For all ages!

Private hire


Children’s Centre Activities



Fiveways Playcentre  is gradually building up its online presence. If you use social media, do shopping online or your child has a learning journal with us, here are the links.


Keep up to date with your child’s progress

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