With lockdown starting to slowly lift in the UK, Absolutely Mama rounds up three of the best nurseries in London to get your child’s name down for now…
The location: The Kindergartens is a family of nursery schools in the south west and west of London. Since their first nursery school opened in 1993, they have grown to a family of ten, who are all rated ‘Outstanding’ by Ofsted. With a unique approach to the Early Years Curriculum, they are able to support and educate children aged 2 to 5 years old.
What to expect: All Kindergartens locations follow the EYFS Curriculum with the 7 stages of learning complemented by their range of clubs and peripatetic lessons. These include art, movement, tennis, science and drama. These programmes help the children prepare to make the transition into primary education by enabling them to experience a full day at school.
Their approach: The Kindergartens were one of the first groups of nursery schools in London to set up its own Forest School. The children at The Kindergartens take part in Forest School fortnightly using various areas of Wimbledon Common and Holland Park. Learning is brought to life by providing children with real experiences and by making it meaningful and purposeful
RIVERSIDE NURSERY SCHOOLS
The location: Riverside Nursery Schools is a family of five unique and beautiful nurseries in the London borough of Richmond.
What to expect: Riverside offers an individualised education, to nurture the growth of the whole child. Children are encouraged to become independent thinkers, and the nursery strives to instil the intellectual, emotional, and physical skills they need to become self-motivated learners, flexible thinkers and creative problem solvers.
Their approach: Teaching at Riverside draws inspiration from a range of established pedagogies including Montessori and Reggio Emilia, which are taught alongside the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum. Teachers work closely with parents to ensure each child’s individual needs are met and a consistent approach between nursery and home helps Riverside children to be settled and happy.
Hopes and Dreams Montessori Nursery School
The location: Hopes and Dreams is located in two beautiful Georgian townhouses on City Road in Islington, minutes from Angel. The nursery consists of several large, light classrooms, and a lovely secure garden for them to be able to use all year round.
What to expect: Hopes and Dreams Montessori Nursery School mission is to provide a nurturing and stimulating environment where our children grow and learn through creative play. Our multi-age classrooms foster independence, whist our broad curriculum encourages responsibility and respect. All of our dedicated team of staff help to guide each child at their own pace.
Their Approach: Our practitioners have high expectations for the learning and development of all the children and this is underpinned by the themes and principles of the EYFS and the Montessori Method of education to achieve the learning outcomes. Teaching is of consistently high quality and responsive to the children’s needs. The prepared environment and the Key Person and ‘Buddy’ provide a secure base for the children to develop bonds, build positive relationships with adults and peers, and develop self-confidence, self-esteem and social skills, for example sharing and turn-taking through play.
The children play and learn in a rich language environment where the practitioners are role models and use their vast experience to encourage, support and focus on helping to develop in the prime areas of learning and development, enabling the children to reach their full potential.
EATON SQUARE NURSERY SCHOOLS
The location: Eaton Square has four London nurseries across Belgravia, Eccleston Square, Knightsbridge and Pimlico. Each has a different personality, but all offer homely and fun atmospheres in stunning surroundings. All are close to outdoor parks or playgrounds, which children can enjoy to the full.
What to expect: Eaton Square aims to foster happy and independent children and they put an emphasis on forging strong home/school links. Many children attend the nursery from ages 2-4 and then go on to study at Eaton Square’s Prep school and then their Senior school.
Their approach: A timetable of structured play is offered alongside a focus on all aspects of the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum. Ballet, Music, Swimming, Yoga, Drama and Karate are taught by specialist teachers and there is help available from the Learning Enrichment department for any child who requires additional support.