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Samantha Shepherd - Centre Manager

BA (Hons) Early Childhood Studies & EYPS

I have worked with children since 2007 and specialised in Early Years since 2009. I started working full time for Discovery vine as an apprentice and I completed a Level 3 in Childcare Learning and Development. Since then, I have completed a BA Honours Degree in Early Childhood Studies and gained Early Years Professional Status.

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I am the setting manager at Longsands Pre-School, Before and After School Club and I love working with all age ranges. I am also the Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator and Nominated Officer for the setting. Over the years, I have attended a wide variety of courses to enhance my professional development and to help within the company. These courses range from Safeguarding; Paediatric First Aid; Autism in the Early Years and Speech and Language.
I have two beautiful rabbits called Ralph and Barney; two gorgeous dogs called Jacko and Duke and two crazy cats called Kitty and Coco – Yes the house is like a zoo!! I love going on holiday and spending time in the sun. I also enjoy spending time with my friends and family; going shopping and enjoying a pamper or two.

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Lizzie Garbutt - Early Years Practitioner

Level 5: Foundation Degree in Early Years Practice

I have been working with children since 2011. I began my Level 3 apprenticeship after leaving high school and continued on to University after to achieve my Foundation Degree in Early Years Practice. I have Supervised Discovery Vine’s Before & After School Club at SS Mary’s and Michael’s RC Primary School in Garstang and now I work at Discovery Vine’s Pre-School at Longsands

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Community Primary School as an Early Years Practitioner. Over the years working with Discovery Vine, I have gained experience with children from a variety of ages and abilities. I have been on a selection of courses to receive additional training to gain the knowledge and experience required to cater for the needs of all the children who come into our care.

I have a bearded dragon, a rabbit, 3 guinea pigs and 2 mice. I love being outside and enjoy anything to do with animals and nature.

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Laura Johnson - Early Years Teacher

PGCE Primary Education & Early Years Professional Status

I joined Discovery Vine in 2006 whilst I was at university working towards a BA Honours degree in Primary Education. Since then I have also been awarded the Early Years Professional Status.

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Over the years I have completed many other training courses in order to further my personal & professional development. These range from Paediatric First Aid and Safeguarding Levels 1 & 2 to Early Talk Boost.

Throughout my time at Discovery Vine I have worked in all of the settings and gained experience of working in both Out of School clubs and Pre-Schools.

I am now working part time for Discovery Vine across all the settings helping to evaluate and improve on the high quality of care we aim to provide . I have recently returned to work after having my first child.

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I have a level 4 Diploma in Child Education and a degree in Personnel Management and Development. I have 20 years experience in Early Years Settings. I am a working mother and to relax I love to spend family time going on adventures in our caravan

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Laura Griffin - Early Years Practitioner

BA (Hons) Early Childhood Studies

I have a BA (Hons) Degree in Early Childhood Studies and graduated in July 2016 from Edge Hill University. As part of my studies I have carried out a number of placements at a specialist school and various nurseries.

I have been working for Discovery Vine since April 2015 across their various locations. I currently work during school hours as an Early Years Practitioner in their Pre-School at Longsands.

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My ambition in the future is to continue to be involved in the development of children, and ultimately to become a play therapist.

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Lauren Weyer - Play Worker

NVQ 3: Health & Social Care

I have been been working at Discovery Vine since November 2015 in their breakfast, after school and holiday clubs. I am Level 3 qualified in Health and Social Care and I am currently working towards Level 3 in Play work. In the future, I would like to work in the Early Years sector. In my spare time, I love to shop!

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Tamlyn Penny - Play Worker

NVQ3: Children's Care, Learning & Development

I have worked with children since 2003 when I left the Royal Air Force to become a nursery nurse after I achieved my Diploma in Child Day Care. I worked at various nurseries & became a childminder in 2005. I enjoyed this very much but I missed working with large groups of children & other staff. I went back to work in a nursery where I achieved an NVQ Level 3 in Children’s Care, Learning & Development.

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I have a daughter called Beth, I enjoy music, concerts, travelling, going to the cinema, socialising with friends, being pampered & I love supercars. I have driven a Lamborghini which was a wonderful experience & wish to drive other cars too. My dream is to one day go to New York & drive along route 66.
I have been a room leader in a baby room and although I enjoyed this very much I wanted to expand my knowledge & experience by working with older children. I came to Longsands in September 2015 & I thoroughly enjoy it. The children & staff are wonderful to work with & I will be furthering my knowledge in the upcoming future by studying for a Level 4 in Early Years. I hope to stay with Discovery Vine for a long time.

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Swati Vaja - Play Worker

NVQ 3: Early Years Practice

I have been working with children of all ages since qualifying with a Btec Diploma in NNEB in 1991. I re qualified in 2010 with Level 3 in Early Years and I have been working as a nursery nurse in a range of settings and schools.

I am married and have 4 lovely children. In my spare time, I enjoy cooking and baking for my family and friends.

I started working for Discovery Vine in Sept 2015 while I was attending college to study for my A levels. I currently attend weekly training in London at a school called West End MT. I also sing with the Lancashire Youth Jazz Orchestra. I enjoy travelling, shopping and spending time with my friends and family.

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Lisa Timms - Play Worker

BSc Applied Sport Psychology