Learning is fun and games at Chubby Cheeks Nursery

It was important to me that my son (the older one was the only child then) start his schooling in the right kind of environment. I wanted his first experience to be as positive as possible. If I had it my way, I wouldn't have even sent him to preschool! But I realized that he wanted to be with other kids, even though he was already learning so much at home (that's how we started our Busy Hands series).

An important criteria for me was that the nursery he would join be close by, so I could feel at ease and avoid the stress caused by commuting long distances. We finally zeroed in on Chubby Cheeks Nursery. After taking a tour, it seemed like a good place with the right attitude. Little Dude spent three terms at Chubby Cheeks, and had a wonderful year there.

I recently visited them again at their Al Nahda, Dubai branch (they have 7 branches in the UAE). This seemed a great opportunity to share with you exactly why we loved Chubby Cheeks!

Following the EYFS (Early Years Foundation Stage) curriculum, they have what they call the 'Lifelong Learning' approach to education. Through their diverse activities, they focus on four major areas - embracing diversity, innovation, holistic education, and education for life.

On the day I visited, I popped in three foundation stage classes to see the process in action myself. In one of the classes, the theme was animals. So the teacher, Ms. Camilla, had created a lovely prop for the Old MacDonald's song. The children, aged three to four years, had so much fun singing along with her as the different animals were held up. She later invited them to come and sing up front.

In another foundation class, the theme of the day was saving water. Ms. Shyamali, the teacher, talked about how important it is to save water, which is important for everyone on earth. Her lovely prop was planet earth and a tap with falling water, She used pictures to show how we can all do our bit to save water. This was followed by a craft activity.

In another of the foundation classes, the kids were busy improving their fine motor skills with scissor cutting, beading, cotton swab painting, and paper mat making.

Apart from the foundation classes, the Nursery has separate rooms for babies (2 month old onwards), toddlers (walking to 2 years), and preschoolers ( 2 to 3 years). In the toddler class, the focus was more on sensory play with pom poms, cotton, and discovery jars among other things.

Photo: Chubby Cheeks Nursery
The teachers at Chubby Cheeks use a combination of worksheets, activities, crafts, music, and story enacting to make learning fun for kids. When my son was there, he always looked forward to doing something new.

Photo: Chubby Cheeks Nursery

They also have a play gym and outdoor space (depending on the location) for kids to get physically active, and this is something they do every day.

Photo: Chubby Cheeks Nursery

Frequent field trips also add to the experience, and outings include places like Little Explorers, Dubai Aquarium, and soft play areas.

The Nursery also has a CCN Soul Programme, which helps the kids make the world a better place by participating in initiatives to help those in need, and caring for the environment. You can see some of their past activities here.

The Chubby Cheeks Nursery is ISO 9001:2008 certified and has recently won the Indywood Educational Excellence Award 2017 in Early Years Education category, among many other awards to its name. 

For more information or a tour, visit the Chubby Cheeks Nursery website, or follow them on Facebook and Instagram. They also have a summer camp beginning July 2. 

This post has been written in collaboration with Chubby Cheeks Nursery, but all views and opinions are sincerely my own.

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