Easy Shortbread Recipe for Preschoolers

Easy Shortbread Recipe for Preschoolers

Baking with your preschooler is so rewarding for all involved and can help them to be less picky with food. The key is to start simply with something they are guaranteed to enjoy and to forget perfection, it can get messy and it may not look anything like the picture – yet this is where the magic happens… So, here we have a simple favourite to get you started with thanks to Southwell Preschool. As well as designing tartan, making haggis and learning poems, the shortbread baking formed one of their activities celebrating Burns Night.



250g   or    9 oz   Plain Flour
75g     or    3 oz   Sugar
175g   or    6 oz   Butter

Take the handwash, sleeves up, aprons on train….

Preheat the oven to 160 C / Gas Mark 3.

Line your baking tray with tin foil – It’s easy to work with for little fingers and easy to clean up afterwards.











Weigh out the ingredients, involve your child with checking the numbers.




Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and rub into fine breadcrumbs,
then divide equally between the children if you have more than one.



Squash and Roll into balls – Cut in half – Create Fingers
or indeed any shape and animal your little one’s heart desires.

Prick all over with a fork.





Bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes.

Sprinkle with sugar as soon as they come out of the oven.

Allow to cool and that’s it – super easy shortbread.


I hope you enjoy eating your shortbread creations as much as we did, we would love to see your pictures.

For those interested here is how this all links to Ofsted Areas of Development:
We always look out for the development milestones within our children whether activities are child led or pre-planned, this recipe was part of a number of Burns Night activities, celebrating special occassions and other customs and cultures. We are developing mathematics by weighing out ingredients and discovering that things change when we cook them, introducing a little bit of science. Lots of new words were learned and it promoted communication. This covers areas of learning from both the prime areas and the specific areas of development. But most importantly it’s Messy & Fun !

Thanks for reading.


Ann Best

Ann Best

Supervisor at Southwell Preschool

Our preschool is a non-profit charitable setting staffed with qualified professional child care workers and run by a voluntary management committee. Sessions are for children from the age of 2 until they start school. We pride ourselves in being child and environment led  providing playful activities in our building/garden as well as experiences within the community and our parkland setting.

Southwell Preschool Logo


Telephone us on
07910 889040 or 01636 813821

A peek inside the Opticians’ Examination Room

Optique of Southwell provides a range of optical examinations and products for people of all ages and what really sets them apart from the large chains is the time they dedicate to each customer and the equipment they have available. We meet Allan Connolly the co-owner and Optometrist at this independent high street Opticians. We also see inside the examination room as Allan explains what each piece of equipment is used for. See the video below for full details.

Optique of Southwell is situated on King Street in the centre of Southwell, a market town in the north of Nottinghamshire. The video was originally broadcast on Facebook Live during their Christmas giveaway, do pop onto their facebook page for updates of the latest offers and competitions.

Video Overview: 

Allan Connolly has been a qualified optician for 20 years and covers the full spectrum of examinations including Enhanced Eye tests, using a state of the art OCT machine (Optical Coherence Tomography)  which enables him to scan the eye and investigate further via the 3D images. We see in the video how the images allow him to view the optical nerves, the photo-receptors and different layers of the retina. Allan is then able to identify developing problems even if symptoms are not present yet within the patient, enabling preventative advice and treatments to be discussed.

Optique of Southwell specialise in Contact Lenses, Dry Eye Treatments and Visual Dyslexia Examinations.

Be prepared to spend about 1/2 – 1 hour in the examination room and additional time with Rowena Munro, co-owner and qualified Optician to discuss your practical needs in relation to the prescription and the frames themselves.

Contact Optique of Southwell directly on: 

Tel: 01636 816255
Facebook: @optiqueofsouthwell

Or better still visit them at: 

30 King St, Southwell NG25 0EN

Optique of Southwell






OR CALL MICHELLE ON 0779 967 2080.

Creatives of Southwell Coming Together.

Creatives of Southwell Coming Together.

Just before Christmas I met with a few crafters and artists in a very short space of time and realised how none of them knew each other, despite all being situated from around the Southwell Area.  Having run creative businesses ourselves we know how crucial it is to have a network to tap into and others to collaborate with on projects, So Alicia and I decided to begin a closed Facebook group ‘Creatives of Southwell’. Already it has over 75 members. 

The individuals joining are from a range of backgrounds and cover the full spectrum of creative skills including music, photography, fine art, tattoo art and crochet. 

Already questions have been answered by sharing info/experiences, details of events shared and today a meeting was held to coordinate participation in Open Studios Notts 2018. 

Tina Bettison Of Beloved@thebarn approached us offering her Gallery as a space for those interested to meet in person and decide on a plan that will create an event which is likely to draw more publicity and more visitors to the area. 

We are all about highlighting and promoting the talent within this area and are thrilled that bringing creatives together online is creating ‘real life’ experiences for all to enjoy …. Watch this space as we continue to update on what is happening. Exciting times ahead !! 


Cofounder of Southwell Scoop
If you are a creative individual or business in the Southwell or surrounding villages area come and join in the conversations in the  Creatives of Southwell group. If you would like to promote yourself further via our website and social media then feel free to get in touch x 

Childhood passions lead to Sue Hartley photographing the Southwell Area

Childhood passions lead to Sue Hartley photographing the Southwell Area

Often lifelong passions begin in childhood and our newest addition to the Featured photographers section is a fine example of where this can lead. Sue Hartley has now gained experience in many aspects of photography including judging and being a committed member of local photographic societies as well as working commericially.

Sue’s interest is in the process of creating the photographs and is very keen to contribute to our growing media database, approaching the area with a purpose and using her talents to really highlight the community spirit that makes the Southwell area so special.

Hear from her below and do connect with her on Social Media.

“I took my first photograph aged around 5yrs old, having been allowed to have a go with my Dad’s camera – it was of my grandad and I still have it. I had my own first camera at the age of 10yrs after pestering for one for Christmas (not very well thought through as, on my pocket money, I couldn’t afford film or developing costs…) and have been hooked ever since. I finally, around 30yrs ago, was in a position to enrol at Doncaster College to take City & Guilds in Photography, where I gained distinctions in each of the seven modules. I also joined a camera club to keep up with current trends and to continue receiving constructive criticism from peers. Having moved to Nottinghamshire in 2002, I am currently a member of Nottingham and Notts. Photographic Society. Last year I successfully submitted a panel of work to the Photographic Alliance of Great Britain for accreditation, gaining my CPAGB.

After attending a seminar on judging I was persuaded to add my name to the list of the North & East Midlands Photographic Federation’s judges and now also travel around the East Midlands judging photographic competitions at clubs in the area, which I thoroughly enjoy.

Photography has always been my passion rather than my job; I still do wedding and portrait work (including new-born) commercially, although I do limit the number of bookings per year so that I have time to complete personal projects. As it’s the process of taking photographs that I love I’m happy behind a camera whatever the subject and have a wide portfolio of landscape, cityscape, wildlife, macro, street, music gigs, and non-commissioned portrait photographs. I also enjoy post-processing and my current project is to extend my Photoshop skills to include more composite images and creative work in my collection.

Photographs are meant to be seen and not just to languish on hard drives so, when I saw that the Southwell Scoop were looking for contributors to its media data base, it seemed like a good opportunity to put my work in front of local people. It’s also a motivation to go out locally and look at the area with a different eye – shooting with a purpose rather than just meandering does concentrate the mind, and I plan to do this rather than relying too much on my back catalogue.

Whilst I would obviously be happy to chat to anyone wanting to book a wedding or portrait photographer I would also be willing to consider collaborations with fellow creatives, or to discuss photography requirements that local charities or community event organisers may have. I have previously volunteered my services to our local air ambulance and at craft days organised by Southwell Baptist Church, as well as at the Southwell Fun Day. Having invested heavily in professional equipment and in learning photography skills it’s good to be able to use these to benefit good causes from time to time. (I do come DBS checked, in case you’re wondering).

I’ll look forward to hearing from and maybe meeting with some of you, hopefully in the not-too-distant future.”

Sue Hartley CPAGB

Sue Hartley CPAGB

Semi-Professional Photographer

Look out for Sue's photographs on our social media @SouthwellScoop

and here on the website - Sue Hartley Gallery.
All images are protected by copyright - belonging to Sue Hartley.

Contact Sue Hartley directly
Tel: 07866 617463  
email: suehartley@live.com
Instagram: sue_hartley_photography 




A New Year symbolises a new start you tell yourself. So you’ve decided 2018 is YOUR year.

You’re going to get HEALTHIER, FITTER, HAPPIER!!!

* Perhaps you’ve realised you’ve been feeling like something’s
not quite right?
* Fed up of feeling tired, stressed?
* You feel and look heavier.
* Lack energy.
* Can’t remember a time where you had dedicated time for
yourself and without feeling guilty.
* You’re getting older and you’re not happy with how your body
has changed.
* You’ve let things slide because life just gets in the way

Ok so now you’ve decided you want to make a change how are you going to do that? You’re a grown up. You’ve a pretty good idea what changes you can make to be healthier. Change your diet! Stop smoking! Stop drinking! Reduce stress! Exercise!

The problem with New year resolutions is they are not sustainable. Whether we decide diet or exercise is the way to go to achieve our goals it is often done with a heavy heart and a sense of doom.

What if the only resolution you need make is to alter the way you think about your body and about exercise, and enjoy the results.

You may think the way your mind works has little to do with starting a new exercise programme. But negative thinking and lack of self kindness can stop us before we even get started. Or if we do get started we quickly run out of steam.

Change the way you think about exercise by following these 5 STEPS and you will be on the way to a more sustainable lifestyle change which will be of immense benefit for your health and wellbeing, both physical and mental.

1) Believe you can change the way you think. 
This can be a hard one to accept. We think many things are out of our control and that dictates how we feel. But it doesn’t, your thoughts do that.
In any given situation you can chose how you feel about it. For example, you may look in the mirror and feel bad about your reflection. You’ve had a baby and your body isn’t the same as it was. However your new thought could be ” I’ve grown a new person inside me. How amazing am I!” You just need to decide to replace the old damaging thought with a believable positive one and the feelings will follow. It just takes practice.

‘Whether you THINK YOU CAN, or you think you can’t, YOU ARE RIGHT’ (Henry Ford)


2) Stop hating on yourself.
Change is much easier if you are kinder to yourself. Hating your body is not going to help you. Do you hate your body because you aren’t a young, slim model? Who decided your body isn’t good enough? It’s you after all. Don’t fall for the western notion of beauty. Change is much easier if you love yourself and your body. After all if you want to get fitter and healthier that’s a good thing to do for your body right? So make a list of the things your body can do and focus on what you do like about your body.

Realise it’s not your body that’s the problem it’s your thoughts about it.


3) Challenge negative thoughts.
Notice your negative thoughts and challenge them. For example You’re busy, giving to work, to family and there’s little time for yourself.” How long can you keep this up for? Your body has a great way of making sure we pay attention to it. We become stressed, tired, run down. We need to listen to it before something goes wrong. Consider your body as a beautifully built machine. Every machine needs a certain amount of care taking, service to keep it running smoothly.

Consider what you’re making time for. Exercise is something which helps you run as smoothly as possible. Aren’t you worth it?


4) Be kind to yourself.
Listen to the things you say about yourself. “I have no motivation”, “I’m fat”, “i’ll be no good at it anyway”, “I won’t fit in” etc……..all negative. What If your best friend was trying to make the changes to their life that you are contemplating now, wouldn’t you choose kinder words of encouragement and enthusiasm? Then do the same for yourself.

‘You’ve been criticising yourself for years and it hasn’t worked. Try approving of yourself and see what happens’. Louise L Hay.


5) Take one step at a time.
Don’t leap in and decide you’re going to do the most challenging exercise, then beat yourself up when it becomes too difficult. Consider what type of exercise you’ll enjoy and how you’ll do it. If it’s some form of dance, yoga, exercise class go along to a class and test it out. If you’re a beginner talk to the instructor who can offer modifications to start with. Change happens one step at a time.


Try our FREE no strings , Dance Fitness class, or Yoga class. You’ll discover like-minded women who are all shapes, sizes and ages. The classes are supportive, non-judgmental, fun, friendly and liberating!

Classes are based at Upton Hall, The British Horological Institute. Serving communities in Southwell and surrounding areas.
Daytime and evening classes.

There are limited FREE spaces so the offer is only available to the first 7 people to text YES yoga! Or YES Dance Fitness! below! along with your name.
Drakeford Dance Fitness mobile 07583579017.

Decide now while the thoughts of a New year’s resolution or intention is ripe in your mind. Avoid the January rush and secure your space.
Comment YES for further information and take the first step towards becoming a healthier, fitter and happier you!

Drakeford Dance Fitness

Drakeford Dance Fitness

Dance Fitness Instructor

Based at the beautiful Upton Hall – British Horological Institute just outside of Southwell, Nottinghamshire.
Paula provides a variety of classes to help relax, build confidence and improve fitness.
To find out more about her Zumba, Yoga or Body Confidence classes please contact her directly.

Find out more:  call/text 07583579017 
Email paula.drakeford@gmail.com