Early Years Educators

Qualified to a minimum of Level 3, our Early Years Educators work together to provide the highest standard of physical and emotional care for all children.  They plan the day to make sure each one is full of fun, learning and new experiences for all age groups.

  • Vicky Smith

  • Jessica Jones

  • Chelsea Cowton

Heather Jones

Early Years Educator

'Little Miss Top Tips'

Joined June 2018

Professional Qualifications:

  • Diploma in Pre-School Practice (2000)
  • Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) (2012)


  • Channel General Awareness (June 2018)

Continuing Professional Development:

Key Areas:

Hobbies/Interests: I enjoy walking and doing jobs in the garden. I am a keen traveller and I like being exposed to, and learning, new languages. 

Tell us a little about your previous work with Early Years children... 

When I initially enrolled on a course to do a Diploma in Pre-School Practice, known as a DPP, I completed my placement at Bedale Under Fives when it ran from rooms in the Town Hall. I then went on to work as an assistant manager at a pre-school in Shipston-On-Stour, Warwickshire. Most recently I have been in Greece for six years working for a holiday company, caring for children of all ages and from all nationalities.

Why have you chosen to come and work for Incy Wincy's? 

Incy Wincy's has an excellent reputation, I can see that the care and nurturing of the children is their top priority. I feel very lucky to be invited to join a team that is so committed to the welfare of each individual child. I am excited to be a part of it all.

What is your favourite book? 

My favourite book is 'We're Going on a Bear Hunt', with all it's lovely descriptive language. 

What makes you laugh? 

It is hard not to laugh at some of the comments children make, the thoughts in their heads can sometimes just tumble out in words.  There are always occasions though when it is better to hold the laughter in until out of sight of the children! 

Heather's top tips... 

  • A slice of soap in your socks at night stops leg cramps. 
  • If you get a pen mark on your blouse, place a piece of kitchen paper under the mark, squirt it a few times with                                       hairspray, pat it dry, squirt it again and wash. it works every time!

Vicky Smith

Early Years Educator

'Little Miss Bubbly'

Joined April 2007

Professional Qualifications:

  • Diploma for the Children and Young People’s Workforce, Level 3 (2012)


  • EYFS Incredible Learning Journey (January 2014)
  • Introduction to Forest School (November 2014)
  • Paediatric First Aid, Level 3 (January 2016)
  • Promoting Positive Behaviour (September 2014; updated February 2017)
  • Working with 2 year olds 


Currently Studying:

Key Areas:

Hobbies/Interests: Watching my son play cricket and football. We're both keen Leeds United supporters too.


What do you enjoy most about living in Bedale?

I moved to Bedale when I was a few months old, when my Grandad became the Postmaster. I lived in a very busy household as three generations lived together. It's a lovely town to live in as, after all these years, I have so many friends and family around.  Bedale is the perfect size to get to know everyone.

What do you enjoy the most about working at Incy Wincy’s?

The thing I enjoy most of all about my day to day role is the expressions on the children’s faces during our activities or when they are out and about; they really can’t disguise when they are surprised, amazed or completely absorbed in an activity.

I have stayed at Incy Wincy’s because it has such a lovely atmosphere, we really do all get along working together as a team to provide the best experiences we can. It is such a special job, I like everything - though playing is always more fun than the paperwork!

Where do you go to get away?

The east coast; the seaside always makes me feel calm and relaxed. I often go to Flamborough, and watching my son happily splashing around in the waves makes me smile. Anyone who knows me knows how important family is, perhaps because so many of us lived together when I was younger, so whenever we go to the seaside my mother comes along too.

What was your favourite toy when you were younger?

So many of the children at Incy’s arrive with something to snuggle during the day and I was no different when I was little. I had a yellow blanket with teddy bears on, known suitably as my ‘teddies’, and even when I was a teenager I would take it on sleepovers.  It's still in my wardrobe today, though a little the worse for wear from being so well loved.

At Incy’s, I like the large, wooden construction blocks in the Grasshopper room and really enjoy watching the children make all sorts of wonderful things from them. 

Vicky's top tip...

Always try and see the funny side of everything!

Jessica Jones

Early Years Educator

 Jessica Jones

'Little Miss Chatterbox'

Joined August 2020

Professional Qualifications:

  • Degree, Level 6 


  • Makaton Level 1 (October 2021)
  • Paediatric First Aid, Level 3 (2020)


Currently Studying: Masters 

Key Areas:



What is your first childhood memory?

I was 3 and going on holiday with my mummy, daddy, nanny & grandad.  We had a caravan and a tent, I remember spending all day at the seaside, building sandcastles and then being very excited to go back and eat in the tent. It felt like a big adventure!

When you were little what did you hope to do when you grew up?

I remember I wanted to be a nurse or a teacher, then when I was older I did work experience in an early years class in a school and that was it my mind was made up.  I was going to work in early years and inspire young children to learn.

Tell us a little about your career to date...

As a student I completed a placement in a private day nursery, I then took a part-time job with them while i studied towards my Level 2 7 3 qualifications.  I continued to study and gain practical experience though my job until I graduated with a degree in Early Childhood Studies.  I stayed on after graduating, working with 2-3 year olds until I made the move to Bedale and took up my role at Incy Wincy's.

Is there one activity you particularly enjoy during the nursery day?

I like joining in with role play it may be a pretend bear hunt, train ride or visit to the seaside; there is no limit on children's imagination.

What was your favourite toy when you were younger?

Jess's top tip... children need to be on the go and having fun to learn the most, don't assume they are learning just because they are sitting still!

Chelsea Cowton

Early Years Educator

'Little Miss TBC'

Joined July 2021

Professional Qualifications:


  • Introduction to Child Protection, Level 2 (July 2021)
  • Home Office Prevent Online Training (July 2021)
  • Paediatric First Aid (September 2018)

Continuing Professional Development:

  • Makaton, Level 1 (October 2021)
  • EYFS 2021, Supporting birth to 2 year olds, NDNA (August 2021)
  • Exemplary Practice with Babies, NDNA (August 2021)

Currently Studying:

Key Areas:

Hobbies/Interests: Taking my puppy for long walks, especially going to the beach.


What activities do you believe bring the most fun and laughter to the children?

My firm favourite, messy play! Whether it be paint, shaving foam or water the children enjoy splashing around, getting messy, exploring textures and learning new vocabulary. 

Why have you chosen to join Incy Wincy's?

I had heard amazing things about Incy Wincy's and believe I can progress here, developing my skills and expanding my knowledge.  The team make you feel so welcome and it is such a lovely setting to be a part of.

Favourite food...

My all time favourite, pasta with halloumi fries coming close second.

If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go?

I would travel to Rome, I enjoy being busy so I would need a fast paced city break - of course Rome has the added bonus of pasta too!

Chelsea's top tip...

Get involved! it may be stories, construction or messy play children will simply enjoy having you join in the fun and sharing the experience.

Michelle Saunders

Early Years Educator