Sunday 16th July marked Disability Awareness Day in the UK. Tops Day Nurseries showed their support by holding various activities across their settings to help the children to gain a better understanding about disabilities and how to help those living with disabilities.
Children, staff and parents of all abilities are welcome at Tops Day Nurseries, and they believe that it is important to make their children aware of the different kinds of disabilities and accept them, as well as providing the children with ways to overcome barriers they may face themselves.
Some nurseries within the Tops family had a very special visitor join in with some of the activities, their beloved mascot Marty Mouse. As Marty is unable to speak and can’t see very well, the children talked about how they could help Marty and include him in their activities. The children were very caring and compassionate towards Marty, they were aware of Marty’s disabilities and proceeded to hold Marty’s hand to guide him around the nursery, telling him to ‘be careful up the steps’ and watch his giant ears when passing through doorways.
Tops Salisbury, formally Toy Box Day Nursery, joined the Tops Day Nurseries family earlier this year and the children based at the hospital setting were very excited to meet Marty Mouse for the first time. Introducing Marty Mouse was not the first change to have taken place at the nursery, the nursery has recently acquired a number of new resources to facilitate the children’s developmental needs, allowing them to have more opportunities to learn, take risks and grow.
Following Marty’s visit to Tops Salisbury, the children discussed how to care for others who may need additional support, as well as reading a book called ‘don’t call me special.’
One child said “we sang a song with Marty in our garden, I showed him the den we built” whilst another commented “We are making Marty some glasses and I drew a picture of him so he can see it next time.”
Nicky Harper, Nursery Manager at Salisbury said “The children were extremely accommodating to Marty Mouse, and loved showing him our nursery. Since Marty’s visit, the children have showed an interest in learning about different abilities and have been reading different stories on the topic. The children have been busy drawing a number of mouse portraits, ready to present to Marty on his next visit.”
The children are very excited to present Marty with his new glasses, and can’t wait to show him the brilliant portraits they have drawn.