The Benefits of Nursery School
During a child’s formative early years, it’s so important that positive growth, wellbeing and development are supported. At St George’s School for Girls, we offer a quality nursery school experience, in a warm and caring environment which aims to nurture curiosity, inspire learning and promote independence for the best start in life.
In this blog our Head of Nursery, Lisa Nettleton, discusses what your child can expect from attending our nursery and how this prepares children for the school experience. Click on the image below for an interactive version of the article.
St George’s Nursery caters for children from age three to school age and offers individual support for every child. The ante preschool class is open to boys and girls aged three to four, while the preschool class is comprised solely of girls. This enables us to support each child's unique learning style, allowing children to flourish, whilst also encouraging peer group bonding, shared experiences and social interactions before progression into Junior School.
We have a fantastic team of nine staff members across two nursery classes, two of whom are qualified primary teachers. Before becoming Head of Nursery, Lisa Nettleton was a primary teacher in our Junior School and has been part of the St George’s School community for just over 10 years. All other members of the nursery team are highly qualified early years practitioners with a range of nursery-specific training. We have a generous staff-to-pupil ratio to supporting our team of experts, allowing for small group learning experiences and offering increased flexibility to families.
Families with young girls at St George’s Nursery can invest in their daughter’s future from age three to 18, with the option of all-through education. Here, children can move smoothly through from nursery to Junior School, then on to our secondary school environment, safe in the familiarity of an all-through campus supported by a team they’ve known throughout their childhood years. Knowing our children as individuals as well as learners, and giving them the space to be themselves, allows us to make times of transition and change run as smoothly as possible.
Learning through play is central to life at St George’s Nursery. We take pride in creating engaging spaces filled with unique objects, styled to promote exploration, curiosity and imaginative play with a balance of planned and spontaneous play both indoors and out. We believe in developing the child as a whole and have high aspirations for each individual; quality play in the early years supports this.
Our nursery children benefit from specialist activities on set days throughout the week, which helps them get used to time, patterns and routine. For example this year, Tuesday is Music morning while Wednesday is Ballet morning and we have weekly PE lessons taught by our specialist teachers who become familiar faces for continuing students. We also have weekly visiting experts including a sensory and sign language specialist to complement the range of teacher- and practitioner-led activities on offer each afternoon.
We encourage our children to develop a love of being active and being outdoors. We know we are fortunate to have immediate access to expansive, green areas. We have a comprehensive outdoor learning programme, with activities taking place in a variety of spaces including our Fantastical Forest and Secret Garden as well as at our school’s new eco-friendly pond area. Being outside, connecting with nature is wonderful for the health and wellbeing of children and it is fantastic to see their excitement when they get outside!
Our central location means we are within easy reach of popular attractions like the Royal Botanic Gardens or National Gallery of Modern Art, where we go on off-campus field trips. With our school minibus, we can also go further afield to family-favourites like Craigie’s Farm.
Being able to offer our nursery families choice and flexibility is so important to St George’s and we provide a choice of morning sessions or full day nursery sessions.
Our wrap-around care includes a breakfast club and after school care, called Nursery+. Our breakfast club opens before school hours offering a nutritious breakfast from 07:45 am. Healthy eating is promoted across the school to help set students of all ages on track for happy and healthy lives.
The on-site catering team provides freshly prepared, healthy meal and snack options and our nursery children enjoy a hot lunch each day. We can even provide a late meal with our Nursery+ provision which operates up to 6:00 pm.
Meet Lisa Nettleton
"I am the Head of Nursery, responsible for the day-to-day operation of St George’s Nursery. I manage the staff team, sharing in planning responsibilities and with an overview of each child’s progress. I am a direct source of communication with parents as communication is at the heart of our school community and we operate on an open-door policy. I am part of the Junior School Leadership Team which allows me to act as a liaison point between the Nursery School, Junior School, and wider school community.
There is something very special about working with children at these early stages of their educational journey. You are caught up in their excitement and wonder as they make discoveries about the world around them. It is a lovely feeling to be accepted naturally into the play of young children. You end up so involved in their lives. All of the nursery team get to know our families so well – parents, grandparents, friends and other family members - and this personal approach is so important in creating a great experience for your children. As a parent myself, I value this so much.
As a school, we understand the pressures of modern life and being able to offer variety and flexibility is key at St George’s nursery. We take a truly personal approach with every child – sharing their joys and successes - so that our children blossom getting off to the best, most confident of starts in their early school lives."
Are you looking for an attentive and stimulating nursery for your child?