Job title: Forest School Leader/ Early Years Practitioner 

In late 2019 we completed the build of our nursery lodge which is within grounds of 2 1/2 acres, located in the Brucklay Bridge area, just around 8 minutes’ drive from Mintlaw. Since opening, we have already taken full advantage of the surroundings. We are all about exploring, playing and learning whilst being outdoors as much as possible. Our lodge is purpose built and bespoke designed as a comfortable retreat when the Scottish weather doesn't allow for a day of outdoor play!

Our point of difference is that we offer all this in a natural environment allowing exploration, free play, and outdoor learning activities and lots of fresh air! Equally, we designed the indoor space ourselves with children in mind - it is fully equipped to a high standard with a bright playroom, quiet room, kitchen and changing room/ toilet facilities. 

We are currently planning a Forest School addition for children age three up to school age to afford our children continuity of care as they explore, play and learn outdoors!

Job title: Forest School Leader/ Early Years Practitioner 

Responsible to: Manager/ Assistant Manager

Purpose of the role:

To work as part of the Mud Kitchen Team under the direction of the manager/ assistant manager. To provide safe, high quality education and care for young children which meets the individual needs of children attending the setting. To take the lead in planning & coordinating engaging educational activities for our younger children.

Safeguarding requirement: The Mud Kitchen Nursery is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people. It is a requirement of all staff that they share this commitment and follow the prescribed policy and procedures to continuously promote a culture of safeguarding across the whole organisation.

Main duties

1. To help to set up for the daily programme and to help tidy away at the end of the session.

2. To take the lead on planning activities for our younger children. Reflecting on what worked well

and how we might tweak things in the future is also key to our approach to planning.

3. To work in partnership with parents/carers and other family members.

4. To advise the Manager of any concerns e.g. health and well-being of children, parents or the safety of equipment, preserving confidentiality as necessary.

5. To teach children, offering an appropriate level of support and stimulating play experiences.

6. To ensure that children are kept safe and that you understand when to follow child protection


7. To support meal times within the setting.

8. To keep completely confidential any information regarding the children, their families or other staff, which is acquired as part of the job.

9. To be aware of and adhere to all the setting’s operational policies and procedures, e.g. health and safety, risk assessments, fire precautions, dropping off and collection of children, food safety, cleanliness of the setting.

10. To ensure that adequate records are kept and updated regularly.

11. To promote the setting to current parents and potential customers.

12. To comply with the requirements of the General Data Protection Regulation.

This job description is not an exhaustive list of duties and the post holder will be required to undertake any other reasonable duties discussed and directed by the line manager. The post holder is also expected to be flexible and adaptable in their approach to fulfilling their duties.

Person specification

Essential criteria

1. Level 3 early years education and childcare qualification or equivalent (e.g. Teaching/Nursing)

2. Previous experience of working with young children.

3. Sound knowledge of child development from birth to five years, particularly with regard to children between the ages of 3-5 years.

4. Knowledge of the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS).

5. Knowledge of safeguarding and child protection procedures.

6. Good communication skills.

7. An understanding of play-based approaches to children’s learning and development.

8. A commitment to continuously promote a culture of safeguarding.

9. A commitment to equal opportunities.

10. A commitment to working effectively with young children and families.

11. A friendly and flexible approach at work which facilitates the development of effective relationships.

 Desirable criteria

1. Level 3 early years education and childcare qualification or equivalent, and a commitment to obtaining a level 4 qualification.

2. Current First Aid at Work/Paediatric first aid qualification.

This post is exempt from the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act (1974) and does require a PVG check.