Me and My Setting


My name is Katharine Bowdidge and I have lived in Fleet, Hampshire since I was 5, so I know the area well! I am married to my husband Julian and we have a 14 year old son Charlie and a collie dog called Hobbes.

I have been caring for children since 2004 when my son was born. I trained as a Relax Kids Coach in 2010, mainly teaching classes with infant school aged children. I have also completed training in 'Mindfulness for Educators'. In 2012 I started working part-time as a nursery assistant at a local Nursery and looked after babies, toddlers and pre-school aged children. In 2013 I also took on an after-school nanny position with a family in Church Crookham, looking after their son and daughter who were 10 and 12 respectively at the time. My son was with a childminder for a time when he was younger, so I have experience of childcare both as a parent and as a carer, so I am able to empathise with parent's worries or concerns.

My childcare setting is in my family home, in a quiet cul-de-sac, in the Pondtail area of Fleet. I have a small back garden with a decked area, and astro-turf lawn, where the children can play. We are also so lucky to have the canal, woods, heathland and pond right on our doorstep! Perfect for 'Expotitions'! (as Winnie the Pooh would say). There are also several parks and soft-play areas nearby, as well as plenty of baby and toddler groups. 

I love all things to do with arts and crafts, especially incorporating nature into our craft projects. I have tons of art supplies, so we'll always have something crafty on the go! As well as the main living areas in the house, we have a dedicated playroom/sleeproom for the children to use. We have a whole-house water filter system, so I can provide tasty filtered water for the children to drink, wash with and play with (e.g. sand/water table, paddling pool).

Before and After school care:
I will be able to take children to and collect children from, Fleet Infants and Velmead Junior schools. My son previously attended these schools, so I know the schools well and have good relationships with the staff there already. We will generally walk to and from school and when the weather is nice we can walk along the woods and canal, which is just lovely with the dappled sunshine in the mornings and feeding the ducks in the afternoon :)

We do not use video games in the setting at all and minimise TV in the mornings before school, as research has shown that when children watch fast moving cartoons and video games before school, they find it harder to adjust and concentrate at the slower pace that their teacher will be working at. So we tend to have toys out, or colouring or the children might like to read, so their brains are all ready for a fun day ahead of learning.

After school, the children will be able to have a healthy snack and drink, do arts and crafts and have a play. There is space for them to do their homework if they have any or they can do puzzles and play board games. They are allowed to watch a little TV after their evening meal if they wish.

Early Years care:
I aim to offer a very welcoming and mindful setting where children can learn and develop in a holistic and nurturing environment in conjunction with the parent's preferences and needs for the child.

I will follow the early years framework and aim for children to learn and develop through purposeful play that's both adult and child-led.

My Qualifications:
  • Ofsted registered
  • Level 3 Home-based child-carer award  
  • Level 3 Safeguarding training 
  • Paediatric First Aid certificate
  • Certified Relax Kids Teacher 
  • Course taken in Mindfulness for Educators  
  • Degree in Business Psychology & Marketing

I seek to do Continuing Professional Development (CPD) and have taken advantage of courses offered locally and online, including...
  • Irresistible Learning
  • Behaviour and self-regulation
  • Online safety/cyber bullying
  • Parenting Teenagers (much of which was applicable/adaptable to younger children too)
  • Safer Food, Better Business for childminders
  • Sing 'n' Sign
  • I was offered a place on the Post Grad Early Years Teacher Status course at Reading University, but had to defer it due to a change in personal circumstances. This is something I hope to take up again in the future.
I am a member of Pacey (Professional Association for Childcare and Early Years)

I have full Public Liability Insurance and both my home and car insurance cover me for childminding. I have a full clean driving licence & 7 seater car.