At St Paul’s Nursery, learning through play is at the heart of all we do and we strive to lay the foundations for our children’s lifelong learning. We recognise that every child is unique; we thereby provide them with opportunities to follow their individual imagination and creativity. Also due to this, our curriculum is developed and adapted each year to follow the interests and fascinations of the children in the current year group whilst also building specific knowledge, identified through the areas of learning and the current world they are growing up within. We recognise how learning builds sequentially – by building knowledge and skills and revisiting them frequently to support ‘sticky learning’.
We have a large classroom and outside space that our children have access to everyday (whatever the weather)! There are areas to discover and extend play, in both areas, with stimulating resources. From cosy book corners, to small and large construction, role play, sensory play and creative spaces to name but a few. The children are taught how to respect the environments and resources, as they become independent leaners. We know that children learn best when they are healthy, safe and secure, when their individual needs are met and when they have positive relationships with the adults who care for them.
We understand the importance of building positive relationships with the children, through key-worker groups, but also with parents. We work in partnership with parents to provide feedback on the children’s progress, alongside offering support and advice to parents on how to support at home. The Nursery staff do home visits for every child, offer stay and play and reading sessions throughout the year, run curriculum meetings on Phonics, reading and writing and maths, send home newsletters on how the children are doing and invite parents to join us as we adventure into the woods.
We follow the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) Statutory Framework, which sets the standards that schools must meet for the learning and development and care of children from birth to five.
We support our children in all seven areas of learning but focus on the three ‘prime’ areas in our Nursery year, as they are crucial for igniting children’s curiosity and enthusiasm for learning, and for building their capacity to learn, form relationships and thrive, ready for school. We have a strong focus on PSED, giving the children opportunities to develop their sense of wellbeing, ability to regulate their feelings and show kindness to others.
The Prime areas are: Personal, social and emotional development, Communication and language development, Physical development.
The specific areas of learning are: Literacy development, Mathematics development, Understanding the world, Expressive arts and design.
Alongside ‘what they learn’ we also develop ‘how they learn’. We provide high expectations alongside developing the Characteristics of Effective Learning to encourage children to develop perseverance, resilience and self-belief so that they can problem solve and achieve whilst developing a ‘growth mindset’.
Our Day in Nursery
A typical session in Nursery:
Self-Registration and Child Initiated Learning (CIL)
When the children arrive at Nursery they will self-register (find their name card) and then go to play. We encourage their parent or carer to settle their child before leaving.
Funky fingers – fine and gross motor skills activity
Whole Group Time
The children join together for a welcome session/short activity eg story or song.
Adult Led Activity
The children take part in small group activities to develop skills and learning.
Child Initiated Learning (CIL)
This is the time when children are initiating their own learning, both inside and out. They are actively exploring and discovering at their own levels, in their own ways. The adults will be interacting, assisting, observing and supporting the children during this time.
Snack station is open throughout CIL so that the children can chose to eat and drink when they are ready.
Tidy up Time
A crucial learning time where the children learn to take responsibility and care for their environment and resources.
Phonics and Story Time
All the children come together to review the morning. We play listening
games, read a story or poem, and maybe sing before we finish the morning
Home time or Lunch club
The Nursery staff walk the children up to lunch club and hand over any information to the staff.
At St Paul’s we offer 15 hours of education which is split into 3 hours every morning from Monday to Friday from 8.55am – 11.55am.
We work closely with Chipperfield Preschool to support children needing wrap around care. The staff from the Breakfast club will drop the children to Nursery and the Nursery staff walk the children to lunch club. This helps support strong communications between the two settings and parents.
Click here to know more about Chipperfield Preschool.
For further information regarding our schools admissions, please click the link below.