How it all began
Simba’s Den started in 2009 after I had fallen pregnant with my first child Tallulah. I had always worked in childcare since leaving school and took many part time child care positions whilst I studied for my degree in History and Sociology.
After completing my degree I fell pregnant whilst working full time as a preventative worker for under threes in social services; I was in a dilemma (like most Mummy’s I know) of how to balance work and a new baby. I knew that I wanted to work but I wasn’t keen on putting my baby in a large nursery where she would be inside for the majority of the day. I felt very strongly about Early Years Education and knew first-hand the benefits of attending nursery but I also wanted her to have weekly experiences that weren’t available in other nurseries. I also wanted her to feel ‘at home’ and have secure bonds with the carers who would be looking after her. And this is where Simba’s Den began.
Overall I wanted something smaller than your typical nursery; a more relaxed homely style of care but I also wanted beautiful surroundings. After much research I knew I wanted a village location and found a property available in the wonderful village of Bulwick. It was beautiful and the traffic was minimal; there was lots of places to explore and wonderful grounds adjacent to the nursery. Whilst the building would need a lot of work I knew it was the right place for children to start nursery.
We opened in September 2009 and 5 years on our philosophy has stayed the same; the children are at the heart of our practice and the nursery has gone from strength to strength. We have developed and continue to develop around the children we care for; adapting our routine, environment and extra-curricular activities to suit the needs of the children.
Being a Mummy is and always has been my starting point for the nursery; I run Simba’s from a parent’s perspective and understand first-hand how hard it is to make the decision to leave children in anyone’s care. At Simba’s Den we listen to the children and observe their needs; which is where our extracurricular activities come from. Our forest school was born from the children’s desire to play outside and staff witnessing how much they enjoyed outings and having the freedom to explore. Our baby sign has been developed through the babies thriving from having early communication skills and the ballet grew from seeing how much our children love learning a new skill from an early age.
I love everything about the Early Years and view the care, education and environment as my highest priority. We are proud of everything the nursery has achieved and it really is a nursery with a difference; but our upmost pride comes from the fact that the children who come to Simba’s Den thrive in their Early Years.
Samantha (Owner and Mummy)