Abacus Nursery

Name Abacus Nursery
Ofsted Inspection Rating Good
Address 3 Palace Road, London, SW2 3DY
Type Childcare on Non-Domestic Premises, Full day care
Gender Mixed
Local Authority Lambeth
Catchment Area Indicator Available No
Last Distance Offered Available No
Highlights from Latest Full Inspection (11 October 2019)
There may have been more recent inspections such as monitoring visits or short inspections. For details of all inspections, please view this provider on our map here.

What is it like to attend this early years setting?

The provision is good

The manager and her team create a warm and welcoming environment where children demonstrate that they feel happy, safe and secure. Children develop close bonds with the staff and their friends, and this contributes positively to children’s well-being. Staff support children’s physical and emotional needs effectively. They know children well and plan activities according to their interests. Babies who are settling in enjoy a lot of one-to-one time with staff as they explore different textures during sensory play. Staff provide plenty of encouragement to build children’s confidence and support them effectively. Staff have high expectations for all children, which helps to ensure that they make good progress from their starting points. The curriculum is implemented well through good-quality teaching. Children enjoy the outdoors and benefit from fresh air and exercise. They visit local nature areas as they explore their surroundings. They collect leaves and twigs to bring back to the nursery and learn to climb trees safely. Children are well behaved, kind and considerate. They take turns with others during play and are well mannered. Staff are positive role models for children. They set good examples and provide clear explanations to support children’s understanding of positive behaviour. At times, however, staff do not organise activities as well as they could and they miss some opportunities to extend children’s learning.

What does the early years setting do well and what does it need to do better?

Staff have a good understanding of how children learn and develop. They complete regular observations and assessments, looking at where the children are in their learning and development and what needs to be done next. The manager closely monitors assessment and its use to ensure that all children make good progress.Staff provide teaching that builds on what children already know and can do. They provide activities that follow children’s individual interests and next steps. Staff engage and motivate children to learn. However, the environment in the toddler room is not organised as effectively as it could be. There are times of the day when children cannot access all areas that could engage them further.Strong relationships are fostered with parents, who praise the nursery highly. The staff team regularly shares information with parents about their children’s care and early learning. For example, parents are invited to regular meetings and coffee mornings, and the online learning tool supports parents in extending children’s learning at home.The committed management team works well with the staff to evaluate the effectiveness of the nursery. Its members have regular meetings and, together, they reflect on practice and identify areas for further improvement. Purposeful supervision meetings and observations of practice support staff to develop their teaching skills. Training has a positive impact on experiences for children, as staff apply their new-found knowledge and skills.Staff encourage children’s mathematical development effectively. Children regularly use mathematical language in their play. Older children confidently count out pretend money and recognise numerals important to them as they play in a pretend shop. Younger children help to count out plates before snack times and begin to consider the difference between full and empty.Children are becoming independent learners. Older children put on their own coats before going outside and serve their own food at mealtimes. Robust hygiene procedures are in place, and children wash their hands and explain why they need to do so. Children enjoy cooking activities and learn where food comes from. They develop a positive attitude towards leading healthy lifestyles and enjoy eating nutritious food at mealtimes.The manager implements policies and procedures effectively, including for complaints, whistle-blowing and behaviour management. Staff complete regular risk assessments to ensure the premises are safe and secure.Staff support children’s developing language skills well. They introduce words, ask questions, use repetition and act as good role models for communication. For example, they enthusiastically talk to children about the marks they are making with paint. At times, however, some staff miss opportunities to challenge and extend children’s learning and thinking skills further.Occasionally, transition times during the day are not organised as effectively as they could be. Children are sometimes left waiting too long and become unsettled.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.The managers and staff have completed safeguarding training and have a good understanding of how to keep children safe. They have a good knowledge of the signs and symptoms of abuse and a broad understanding of wider safeguarding issues. Staff know the procedures to follow if they have a concern about a child in their care as well as the whistle-blowing procedure. The manager has robust recruitment and induction procedures in place. She completes rigorous checks to ensure that only those suitable to work with children do so. Staff follow comprehensive procedures with regard to the recording of accidents.

What does the setting need to do to improve?

To further improve the quality of the early years provision, the provider should: provide more opportunities for children to extend their thinking and learning skills review the planning of daily routines to reduce the amount of time that children have to wait without being occupied develop the organisation of the environment to ensure all children’s needs and interests are met consistently.