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Hartside, County Durham Crook DL15 9NN

01388 766686

EYFS Staff

BEth Hodgson - Assistant Head Teacher - EYFS Leader

Hi there! I teach the Reception boys and girls but I work with all of the children in our EYFS unit. I absolutely love playing and working in EYFS!  My favourite things to learn about are pirates and dinosaurs.  I like to teach phonics and I love to make silly songs up and have lots of fun everyday! 

My favourite story is The Tiger Who Came to Tea by Judith Kerr.

My favourite song is 'mm nn Went the Little Green Frog!'

My favourite thing to play is… playing with the children outdoors where we can be as messy and noisy as we like!   I especially like making soup and pies in our mud kitchen.  Oh and finding worms and minibeasts hiding under logs (Our Miss P hates worms so we have to look for them secretly – sh!)  I love climbing on our climbing frame and pretending it is a space ship but I am not very good at jumping off.   I am really good at building dens and castles outside too!

Outside of school life I enjoy reading lots of books, going to the beach and walking my dogs called Sid and Derek.  Sid can be naughty because he loves pinching socks and Derek likes to jump up on the settee even though he's not allowed!   Mr. Hodgson, likes to think he is a bit of a farmer (even though he is not really) and he has seven hens that live in our back garden! I have two children to keep me busy at home too, they are called Alex and Tobias.



Laura Burgess - Nursery Teacher

I am the Nursery teacher at Hartside and I love being part of the Early Years team, working with all of the boys and girls in both Nursery and Reception! I enjoy exploring our outdoor area, building dens and digging for treasure – every day is different! 

I love sharing stories with the boys and girls; my favourite is ‘The Gruffalo’. We sing lots of songs and rhymes in EYFS and the children love learning new ones! I like ‘The Caterpillar Song’ and ‘Dingle Dangle Scarecrow’ the best! 

Our imaginations run wild each day in EYFS, mixing potions in the mud kitchen, building boats with the blocks and sailing off on little adventures or making jet packs from ‘junk’ and flying off into space – anything is possible!

When I’m not at work, I enjoy spending time with my friends and family. I have a little boy called Alfie who is 4 years old and has just started school. We love going on days out to the farm or the park, I can’t believe how quickly he is growing up! Soon, he will have a little baby brother or sister to play with as I am expecting a new arrival in October!


Leanne Sudder - Teaching Assistant

I am proud to be a Teaching Assistant within our EYFS unit and I really love coming into school every day wondering what fun and exciting things we are going to learn.  My favourite thing to learn about is mini-beasts so I can’t wait to get outside and explore with the children.

I love being creative, especially with natural resources so I am always on the lookout for new ideas and resources whilst at the seaside and forest. 

My favourite story is ‘Charlie and the Chocolate Factory’ by Roald Dahl and I also love reading ‘The Hungry Caterpillar’ with the children.

I love to sing ‘Old Macdonald had a Farm’ with the boys and girls and enjoy creating new songs with the children.

I have a 10 year old daughter called Hollie-Anne who keeps me very busy with archery, French, swimming and Harriers, plus she even manages to squeeze in playing the Cello in an orchestra.  

In my spare time I like to run, grow vegetables and cook.  Mr Sudder and Hollie-Anne enjoy taking me on lots of camping and boating adventures where we love to explore new and exciting places.  We love visiting different countries and love anything Disney.


Emily Mustarde - Outreach Support Assistant

I am proud to be part of Hartside Primary as an Outreach Support Assistant within our EYFS unit, and I love all the new exciting things we get to do every day. I like to spend a lot of time outside and help the children make different things such as obstacle courses with crates, or cakes in the mud kitchen!

As I get to spend time on a one to one basis, I enjoy being in the ‘two’s room’, doing little jobs like finger painting or building with blocks.

We like to read stories and sing nursery rhymes, my favourite is Twinkle twinkle little star.

I also have two children myself, who attend this school too. Mollie, who is 7 years old, and Ella, who is 4 and also in the EYFS unit with me!


Danielle Lomax - Higher Level Teaching Assistant

I am proud to be a Teaching Assistant within our EYFS unit and I really love coming into school every day wondering what fun and exciting things we are going to learn.  I love visiting the pond, discovering tadpoles and frogs.

I love being creative in the junk modelling area, making structures and getting messy with the paints.

My favourite story is The Gruffalo!

I love singing ‘There was a Little Turtle’ and doing the actions with the boys and girls!

At home, I have 2 little girls, Belle who is 7 and Myla who is 6 months old. Together we love going swimming and going on long walks with our dog, Millie.

Annie Mann - Teaching Assistant

In love being a Teaching Assistant in Early Years and get excited thinking about where our imaginations might take us each week! My favourite things to learn about are minibeasts and anything enchanted and magical, faires, wizards, potions and witches. I really love anything that involves sparkle and glitter!

I enjoy singing and dancing, especially Sticky Kids and anything Disney! I also like getting messy in our art and junk modelling area, making the girls and boys into superheroes.

My favourite story is Stick Man by Julia Donoldson as my little boy likes to read it every night.

My favourite song is ‘sleepy bunnies’ as my little girl loves to hop around like a rabbit at home.

I have a little boy called Zachary who is 3 and a little girl called Aria who is 1. We love exploring the outdoors on our weekends, anywhere we can find bugs or get our welly boots and puddle suits on and get dirty!



Michelle Porteus - Higher Level Teaching Assistant

I love being a Higher Level Teaching Assistant at Hartside. I love turning up to work each day wondering what adventures we are about to have.

My favourite area is the junk modelling area. I love to make models with the boys and girls. I also enjoy cooking with the children, making all kinds of creations like pancakes, cookies and chocolate reindeer!

My favourite story is ‘A Squash and a Squeeze’ by Julia Donaldson. I also like the ‘Shark in the Park’ stories too. 

At carpet time I will quite often be found singing lots of songs, ‘Little Peter Rabbit’ and ‘Dingle Dangle Scarecrow’ are my favourites.

I have 2 children, Ellie is 15 and Carter is 3. We like to go on days out together and we all love the beach. I have a little dog called Marley too. To keep me busy at home I like to bake and try out new recipes.

Richard Pratt - Teaching Assistant

I’m lucky to be part of the EYFS family here at Hartside. I have worked at the school for around 6 years after starting as a volunteer. I  have worked in Key Stage one as a SEND Teaching Assistant and as the classed based year one TA. This year I have gone back to my roots and returned to EYFS where I get to play and be messy. 


I enjoy working in EYFS the excitement and challenges of working with younger children really helps to keep me on my toes. No two days are ever the same in early years. As a child I came to Hartside and I feel lucky that I’m now part of the team help to educate the next generation. 


I am a very excitable person and like to help others when I can. Outside of school I am vice chairperson of a charity that provides activities for children within the local community.